BATON ROUGE, La. - UPDATE JAN. 27 9:13 a.m. 21-year-old Dakota Theriot has been arrested by the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office in Virginia, the Associated Press reported Sunday.
ORIGINAL STORY JAN. 26:
Authorities say shootings in two parishes in Louisiana have left five people dead. Authorities identified a suspect, who is still at large.
Officials say the Saturday morning shootings happened in Ascension and Livingston parishes, about 70 miles (113 kilometers) west of New Orleans.
The suspect has been identified as Dakota Theriot, 21.
The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office said Elizabeth and Keith Theriot, both 50, were shot and killed in Gonzales. Keith Theriot was Dakota's father, according to the Associated Press.
Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard also confirmed on Facebook that three deaths happened in his parish on Saturday.
Those victims were identified as Billy Ernest, 44; Tanner Ernest, 18; and Summer Ernest, 21.
Ascension Parish Sheriff Bobby Webre said they were not relatives of the suspect but appeared to know him.
A neighbor who lives near the house told said two young children from the house ran to her home to ask for help after the shooting.
Charlenne Bordelon tells The Advocate newspaper that the children were at home at the time of the shooting that took place in Livingston Parish but were not injured. She says they are both under the age of 8.
Bordelon says Theriot was the older daughter’s boyfriend and that he’d recently moved in with the family but she did not know him.
A family member said she believes her niece had just started dating the shooting suspect, and that some family members didn’t get a good vibe from him.
Crystal DeYoung is Billy Ernest’s sister. She told The Associated Press that she believes Theriot had just started dating her niece, Summer Ernest.
DeYoung said Theriot doesn’t have a vehicle and she’s not sure how he ended up at the Ernest home on Saturday, but after the killings, he took off in her brother’s truck.
DeYoung said her brother, niece and nephew were good people who “trusted people too much.”
Webre said Dakota had lived with his parents briefly but was asked to leave the residence and not return.
Webre said they believe the suspect is heading east and that there was no reason to think he was now targeting someone else but warned that because he’s armed and dangerous: “Anybody he comes into contact with could be a target.”
Police believe he is driving a 2004 gray Dodge pickup truck.
He is considered armed and dangerous.
“I would not approach this vehicle. We feel no doubt that Dakota is going to be armed and dangerous and we need to bring him to justice really quick,” Webre said.
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