Police kill suspect after brutal attacks on elderly

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wwltv.com

Posted on May 8, 2011 at 5:53 PM

Updated Monday, May 9 at 2:53 PM

Scott Satchfield / Eyewitness News

FRANKLINTON, LA - Broken windows and glass scattered across the ground were visible signs of one man's rampage through a typically quiet block in Franklinton early Sunday morning.

"I tried to call the police,” said neighbor Willie Mae Warren. “I was so nervous, I couldn't even call 911."

Warren watched in horror as the suspect moved from house to house – using bricks and other objects to beat people and smash windows, before a police officer shot and killed him.

The attack sent four people to the hospital, including 76 year old Phil Barnes, who was beaten with a tree limb.

"We've been here for about 37 years and nothing never happened like this, and we was frightened," said his wife, Louise Barnes.

The suspect, officials say, kept going for more.

"Then went next door, committed another battery on an elderly female, actually hit her in the face with a brick, and then moved across the street over here to Serenity Village and continued to do much of the same," said Capt. Justin Brown with the Franklinton Police Department.

It was an attack on his own neighbors, Brown said.

Serenity Village is an assisted living center, where the suspect -- 38 year old Phillip Garrett -- has lived for a few months. Police say Garrett suffered from a mental disability, and had a criminal history.

Willie Mae Warren helped end the rampage.

When Garrett approached her, the 86 year old pulled out a pistol and fired three times.

As Garrett backed away, help arrived.

In the alleyway next to Warren’s unit, a police officer confronted Garrett.

Officials say, after dodging a brick thrown by Garrett, the officer tried to use a taser.

They say that didn’t work.

"The officer tried to create distance between himself and the suspect and the suspect closed that distance. The officer fell to the ground. The suspect approached him and got over the top of him and was about to strike him with a brick and that's the point that the officer used deadly force," Brown said.

Neighbors say Garrett was typically friendly, but Sunday, they saw a drastic change.

"Yeah, he was scary. He was real scary,” Warren said. “I didn't know what he was gonna do."

Louisiana State Police are now investigating the case.

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