EBRSO detectives are looking for the suspect involved in the Walmart shooting this afternoon after he assaulted and attempted to disarm a deputy, ultimately discharging a weapon while just outside the store entrance.
Officials say Gabriel Francis is wanted on the following charges:
- Attempted First Degree Murder of a Police Officer
- Resisting an Officer
- Disarming a Police Officer
- Theft of Goods
- Felon in Possession of a Firearm
- Battery of a Police Officer.
According to reports Francis entered the Cortana Walmart this afternoon and was observed on camera switching tags for various items and then attempting to pass through points of sale without paying for the items.
An EBRSO deputy working an extra duty security detail was notified by the store Loss Prevention Staff of the incident. When both staff and the deputy attempted to stop Francis from exiting the store, he became combative and proceeded to engage in a physical altercation with the deputy.
According to staff and witnesses, Francis was on top of the deputy attempting to remove the deputy’s holstered handgun causing it to discharge while in the holster. This occurred while staff also attempted to assist the deputy in gaining control of the suspect. Francis fled the scene on foot, dropping his wallet while fleeing.
Anyone with any information on the whereabouts of Gabriel Francis is urged to call Crimestoppers.
BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Police are investigating a report of shots fired near the Walmart at Cortana Mall.
According to sources, a shoplifter tried to leave the Walmart, and when a deputy tried to stop him a gun shot was heard, possibly from the suspect. No one was hit and the man fled. Authorities are now looking for him. He’s described as a black male approximately 5’3, around 30 yo, 160 pounds, wearing khaki shorts and a white shirt and has short shoulder length dreads.
Brittany Lucas was at the scene when she started rolling on this footage below:
WARNING: EXPLICIT LANGUAGE IN VIDEO:
Brittany’s Facebook post states that in the video, a “police officer and 3 others trying to stop a guy from shoplifting at Cortana Walmart police gun went off (no one was shot).”
Authorities are currently looking for a suspect.
The Baton Rouge Police Department is asking the public to avoid the area at this time.
Avoid Cortana Mall. There is an active police situation underway— Baton Rouge Police (@BRPD) June 15, 2020
A crew is on scene now and updates will be given as they become available.