Tuxedoed groom accused of shooting 2 in wedding night dispute during traffic jam

U.S. and World
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LAPLACE, La. (WGNO) — A groom — still wearing his tuxedo — allegedly shot two people after an argument with his new bride and a male friend while stuck in traffic, according to Louisiana authorities.

At about 10:30 p.m. Saturday, a multiple-vehicle crash closed I-10 West and brought traffic to a standstill with congestion reaching one mile by 11 p.m., according to a tweet from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development

During the traffic jam, an argument between the newlyweds and the friend, who was in the back seat, escalated, resulting in the passenger fleeing the vehicle, St. John Parish Sheriff Mike Tregre told WGNO.

The 30-year-old groom and driver is accused of chasing the friend on foot, then shooting the man in the leg, Tregre said.

Tregre said a stray bullet also went through the rear windshield of another vehicle, striking an uninvolved motorist in the hand as he and his two children, ages 14 and 16, were returning to his Lafayette home after landing at the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.

Tregre said the groom had accused his new wife of having an affair with his friend, reported sister station KLFY.

The man is also accused of pursuing his bride, who fled the car and found refuge in an ambulance she flagged down as it was on its way to the crash scene. St. John Parish sheriff’s deputies raced on foot one mile to the scene.

An off-duty deputy who was also stuck in traffic overheard the call on his radio and left his vehicle to assist. Tregre said the deputy, whose name has not been released, was the primary officer in the groom’s arrest.

“You simply cannot duplicate this kind of scenario in training,” Tregre said.

The man was charged with two counts of aggravated criminal damage to property, illegal use of weapons or dangerous instrumentalities, aggravated second-degree battery and attempted second-degree murder.

The victims, whose identities were not immediately revealed, were airlifted to a New Orleans hospital. The male passenger was reportedly still in the hospital, while the uninvolved motorist was discharged.

The interstate was closed for more than four hours with traffic congestion reaching more than three miles.

“Our officers reacted bravely and accurately and took the suspect into custody with minimal personal damage,” Tregre said. “It is a testament to the training our young men and women do and I am very proud of each and every one of them.”

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