Armed robbery leads to shooting


Managing Editor

What began as an armed robbery led to the shooting of one man and the arrest of another, according to Ville Platte Police Sgt. Joseph “Plywood” Fontenot.

Fontenot said the department was notified of shots fired in the South Soileau Street area at approximately 2:20 a.m. Thursday, October 2. Officers arrived and discovered a 54-year-old black male lying on the ground near the intersection of Oak Alley and Soileau Street. The victim had a gunshot wound to his chest and was transferred to Ville Platte Medical Center by Acadian Ambulance. He said the injuries were serious.

“Once I arrived,” Fontenot said, “I discovered there was another victim, who had been approached by a man with a gun.” The second victim, a 34-year-old white male, told authorities a black male had attempted to rob him at gunpoint. He was able to fight the man and managed to flee the area and hide until police arrived. As he fled the area, the suspect began firing at him striking the 54-year-old, a bystander who lived nearby, in the chest.

Fontenot said the second victim was able to give officers a description of a black male with a hooded jacket and detailed facial information. Officers located Paul Bertrand, 25, 411 W. Cypress, standing near the intersection of Rozas and Cypress. The suspect was brought to the scene and identified as the armed robber.

The evidence led police to arrest Bertrand, who has been charged with armed robbery, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, illegal use of a weapon while committing an armed robbery, two counts of attempted second degree murder and criminal damage to property. “One of the bullets struck a vehicle nearby and went through it breaking two of the windows,” Fontenot said as he explained the criminal damage charges. At press time, no bond had been set.

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