Three teenagers have been arrested in the Louisiana murder of a pregnant woman due to give birth in a matter of days, in a murder reportedly a case of mistaken identity.
The youths, all 19, face charges of second-degree murder and first-degree feticide following the murder of 36-year-old Ketisha Johnson, who was found dead in her car in Baton Rouge.
The teenagers, Marques Porch, Gregory Parker and Derrick Curry, were arrested after Ms Johnson was found dead in her car in the early morning of April 16.
At around 12:30 a.m., Johnson was ready to pick up partygoers from an Easter party in North Carrollton when she was shot multiple times. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Affidavits from the detained youths indicate that surveillance footage from shortly before the shooting showed a dark Honda parked across the street from the party. Lawyer informed.
A group of people are outside the car talking to each other when Mrs. Johnson arrives in her white sedan, causing the people near the Honda to duck. They can then be seen pulling out guns and firing them at the white sedan.
As Mrs. Johnson tried to escape, the shots struck her and killed her, including her unborn child. She can then see the suspects in the video fleeing the area in the Honda.
The men were identified by witnesses present at the scene. All of the suspects told police that they thought Ms. Johnson’s car was one that had passed that same night. An occupant of that separate vehicle had fired several rounds of shots into the air as he passed.
Mr. Porch was also injured in the incident. He told police that he owned the Honda and that he had supplied the other teens with the firearms, according to affidavits. He admitted that he arranged for someone to collect the weapons before the three men were arrested.
At the time of his arrest, Mr. Porch was a corrections officer working part-time for the West Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office.
The office’s public affairs officer, Corporal Landon Groger, said Monday that the teen had been fired after his arrest.
Mr. Porch was a full-time corrections officer between June and November 2022 and then part-time from February of this year until his dismissal on Sunday.
Police Sergeant L’Jean McKneely told WAFB: “Over the course of [the] investigation, we believe the person who shot her thought she was the person who had just fired the multiple shots.”
A childhood friend of Ms. Johnson, Deanna Williams, told WBRZ that it “didn’t make sense” and that Ms. Johnson “was an innocent person.”
Jail records indicate that all three suspects were booked into the East Baton Rouge Parochial Jail. When they appeared before a judge on Monday, they were ordered to remain in pretrial detention without the right to bail, according to Law and Crime.