Suspects in Louisiana shooting captured in Alabama


A surveillance camera captured a shotgun toting suspect inside the J and Z Quik Stop near Bogalusa on Dec. 28, 2018. A store clerk was hit by a shotgun blast during the robbery, authorities said. (Via Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office)

Three suspects have been taken into custody in Alabama in connection with the robbery and shooting of a store clerk near Bogalusa, Louisiana, authorities said.

The suspects were captured in Montgomery County, after a vehicle pursuit that ended when authorities used spike strips to halt the vehicle, the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post on Saturday (Dec. 29).

Arrested on warrants accusing them of armed robbery and attempted first-degree murder were Lance Rouse, of Picayune, Mississippi; Levi Lee, 17, of Carriere, Mississippi; and Melisa M. Smith, of Tylertown, Mississippi.

The three were wanted in Friday’s early-morning robbery and shooting at J and Z Quik Stop on Louisiana 21, just outside Bogalusa, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Video evidence shows that the employee was outside the business doing his daily routine as the suspects’ vehicle pulled into the parking lot, according to the Sheriff’s Office. Two armed suspects got out of the vehicle carrying shotguns and confronted the employee. An altercation occurred, and the employee was shot with a shotgun blast, the department said.

The suspects walked past the wounded employee, went into the store and took cash and merchandise from the business before driving away, authorities said.

The victim was fighting for his life at University Medical Center in New Orleans, according to the Sheriff’s Office.