“This has been really hard on me. I’ve already lost two sons, and now this.” calena francis, grandmother of shooting victim DeAndre Jenkins
Two men were killed Tuesday in unrelated shootings that happened within minutes of each other.
Jermaine Vallery, 22, was shot at 11:22 p.m. during a shootout with another man outside an apartment complex at 8211 Ned Ave., near Gardere Lane, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Casey Rayborn Hicks said.
Both men were taken to a local hospital with gunshot wounds, Hicks said. Vallery later died. The other man, whose name was not released, is expected to survive.
Less than 15 minutes after Vallery was shot, 21-year-old DeAndre D. Jenkins was gunned down near the corner of Scenic Highway and Ellerslie Drive, a police spokesman said.
In the Gardere-area shooting, it is unclear why Vallery and the other man were arguing, Hicks said. She said it also is not clear who fired first.
Detectives are investigating the shooting and, depending on what they find, will determine whether any arrests in Vallery’s death will be made.
Vallery’s mother, Denise Vallery, said she doesn’t believe that her son fired any shots.
“He didn’t own a gun,” she said between tears. “He was a respectable young man.”
Vallery said she and her “baby” moved to Baton Rouge from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and that he “liked it here.”
“He was very friendly and helpful,” Vallery said. “He didn’t have a grudge against anybody.”
Vallery said she last saw her son about 30 minutes before he was shot.
“He and his friends sat right there and ate chicken and potatoes,” she said, pointing to her porch. “That was his last meal.”
In the second shooting, police were called to the 1500 block of Scenic at 11:33 p.m. Tuesday, Cpl. L’Jean McKneely said.
They arrived to find Jenkins lying on the side of the road, suffering from two gunshot wounds to the stomach, McKneely said.
Jenkins was taken to a hospital where he later died, McKneely said.
Detectives said they think Jenkins was shot during an argument about a dice game, McKneely said.
Although no arrests had been made or suspects named as of late Wednesday, McKneely said detectives have received several leads in the case.
Jenkins’ grandmother, Callena Francis, said she raised her grandson and that the Baton Rouge native was a soft-spoken, kind-hearted man who “always had a smile on his face.”
She said she joked with him earlier in the day on Tuesday, before he was killed.
“I saw him around 5 p.m. and told him not to eat all of the food in the house,” Francis said. “We both laughed and went our separate ways.”
Hours later, Francis said a friend of her grandson’s knocked on her front door and told her Jenkins’ had been shot.
“This has been real hard on me,” she said. “I’ve already lost two sons, and now this.”
Anyone with information about Jenkins’ death can contact police at (225) 389-4869 or Crime Stoppers at (225) 344-STOP or (225) 344-7867.
Anyone with information about Vallery’s killing can contact the Sheriff’s Office at (225) 389-5000 or Crime Stoppers.