Dakota Theriot - Photo courtesy of Livingston Sheriff's Office.

Gunman kills 5, including parents, in Louisiana shooting spree, police say

Shootings in Louisiana: What We Know (via CBS news)

  • Five people are dead in two separate – but related – incidents.
  • The “prime suspect” is 21-year-old Dakota Theriot, wanted for first-degree murder and other charges.
  • He is considered “armed and dangerous.”
  • Two of the victims were the suspect’s parents.
  • Evelyn Ernest, the mother of one victim and grandmother of two others, told CBS News that her granddaughter and the suspect were briefly in a romantic relationship .

Authorities in Louisiana say separate but related shootings in two different parishes have left five people dead. CBS affiliate WAFB-TV reports that detectives on Saturday were looking for 21-year-old Dakota Theriot, who is wanted for first-degree-murder, illegal use of weapons, and home invasion.

Ascension Parish Sheriff Bobby Webre told a news conference that deputies were called to a trailer in the city of Gonzales for a “domestic incident” on Saturday morning. Upon arrival, deputies found two people who had been shot but were still alive: Elizabeth and Keith Theriot, both 51. WAFB reports the couple was killed in the bedroom, authorities said.

WAFB reports that deputies were able to interview Keith Theriot before the couple was transported to a hospital in Baton Rouge, where they later died.

From that interview, authorities identified the couple’s son, Dakota, as “our prime suspect in this case.” He is being sought on first-degree murder and other charges.

Webre said Dakota had lived with his parents briefly but was asked to leave the residence and not return. He is considered “armed and dangerous” and was driving a stolen 2004 Dodge Ram pickup, gray and silver in color.

The sheriff said three other shooting deaths occurred Saturday in neighboring Livingston parishes, about 70 miles west of New Orleans.

Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard confirmed on Facebook that three deaths happened in his parish and identified the victims as Billy Ernest, 43; Tanner Ernest, 17; and Summer Ernest, 20.

Livingston Parish Sherriff’s Office spokesperson Lisa Steele said there is no motive at this time. However, Steele said there was cause to believe the suspect had a relationship with one of the victims in Livingston Parish.

Ascension sheriff’s spokeswoman Allison Hudson says authorities believe the shootings in the two parishes are connected, and investigators from both jurisdictions are working together.

Author: CBS News
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