HAMMOND, La. (BRPROUD) — A 16-year-old was killed in Hammond late Saturday night, the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Office said Sunday.
According to Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Chief of Operations Jimmy Travis, deputies were called to the St. Paul Loop area after a 911 caller said someone had been shot. Deputies say the unidentified 16-year-old male was found unresponsive suffering from a gunshot wound.
The victim was pronounced dead on the scene. He has not yet been identified.
The homeowner says there was a physical altercation between a male and female party goer, which reportedly sparked confrontation among some of the other attendees.
“‘Hey, man. Why did you do that to that girl, you know, fight on me,’” homeowner Leslie Thompson said as she recalled the conversation. “He jumped in his car before I can get over there, stating, ‘I’m gonna be back. I’m gonna be back,’ and he left. I went inside, came right back out.”
Then, the night turned deadly.
“They started exchanging gunfire between the two automobiles,” Travis said. “We found over 30 shell casings. We have nine-millimeter, we have 40-caliber, and we have 7.65 by 3’9, also known as AK-47 rounds.”
The homeowner says she knew the 16-year-old victim well. He attended Hammond High School.
“Yes, he comes after school every day, every day,” Thompson explained. “He never once had a gun. He never once talked about gangs. He always talked about when he finished school, he was going to work offshore and get him a good job and be somebody.”
So far, three teenagers and an eighteen-year-old are in custody in connection to the shooting.
As for neighbors, this may be the last straw.
“I can’t even eat. I’m ready to get out of here,” Thompson said. “Before this happened, [there were] all kinds of guns being shot right here. I don’t even know what… I’m just ready to get out of here so bad back here.”
The investigation remains ongoing.
On Monday, there will be grief counselors available at Hammond High School.