2 Jefferson Parish congressmen convicted of manslaughter while shooting people in a car

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) – Two Jefferson Parish congressmen who shot dead a man who refused to be ordered to get out of a moving vehicle last week in Marrero have been arrested on manslaughter orders and fired. discharged from the department, Sheriff Joe Lopinto said Monday night (February 21).

Lopinto announced the arrest and fines of 29-year-old Isaac Hughes and 35-year-old Johnathan Louis, each of whom had been on patrol duty for the JPSO for two years or less.

Congressmen have been on administrative suspension since they shot and killed 32-year-old Daniel Vallee on February 16 outside what Lopinto describes as a known “cracked house” in the 500 block of Wilson Street in Marrero.

Isaac Hughes and Johnathan Louis
Isaac Hughes and Johnathan Louis(Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office)

READ MORE: ‘My son is now gone;’ Family mourns man shot dead by JPSO delegates after refusing to get off car

Lopinto said Hughes and Louis were among five deputies who responded to a neighbor’s noise complaint at the site and had been trying to convince Vallee to step out of a car that had been parked outside for more than 12 minutes. Vallee refused their orders, Lopinto said, and when he fired while facing the delegates, the weapon was drawn.

Lopinto said body-worn camera footage of the deputies and interviews with JPSO personnel at the scene confirmed that when Vallee hit the car horn, one deputy opened fire and the second. participate in multi-shot. Vallee died at the scene, authorities said.

“Mr. Vallee has taken every opportunity to cooperate and comply,” said Lopinto. “There is strength that is clearly justified at the moment, but it is not deadly power. … This is I’m so sorry for everyone.”

Lopinto said JPSO investigators looked at a range of possibilities, from failing to make an arrest for a legitimate murder to convicting deputies of negligent homicide, manslaughter or even second degree murder. Ultimately, he said, detectives did not find criminal intent to support a murder charge but did find probable cause to seek a warrant for manslaughter.

Manslaughter of Louisiana carries a penalty of up to 40 years in state prison when convicted. However, it will be up to the District Attorney’s office Paul Connick to decide what fees the former deputies will ultimately face, if any.

“There is a defense here,” said Lopinto, based on his belief that delegates were truly in fear for their lives during the encounter.

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