Report: Police say two Baton Rouge fatal shootings ‘possibly racially motivated'

 

BATON ROUGE - Police say two fatal shootings that occurred last week in Baton Rouge could have been racially motivated, the Advocate reports.

One man, 23-year-old Kenneth Gleason, has been detained for questioning in the shootings, however he has only been booked on counts of Schedule I and III drug possession on Saturday night. Baton Rouge Police Department Sgt. L’Jean McKneely said the shootings are connected.

“We believe (the shootings) could possibly be racially motivated," McKneely said.

The two shootings happened about five miles from each other with the first occurring on Tuesday when a homeless man, 59-year-old Bruce Cofield, was fatally shot in the 3400 block of Florida Street. The second shooting happened on Thursday when 49-year-old Donald Smart was fatally shot while walking to work in the 3000 block of Alaska Street. Both Cofield and Smart were black. 

McKneely said shell casings from the shootings matched and Gleason’s car fit the description of the vehicle police were looking for, however detectives did not find enough evidence to book him for the two shootings, the report says.

Gleason still remains the person on interest in the shootings, however the investigation is ongoing.

Read the full report here.  

© 2017 WWL-TV


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