Three arrested in BR robbery, assault

Three Baton Rouge men were arrested early Tuesday after allegedly forcing their way into an apartment and forcing three people to strip and kneel before repeatedly beating two of them with a BB gun.

Edward Franklin, 20, and Travis Marcell Watson, 20, both of 620 W. Grant St., Baton Rouge, and Courtney Moore, 19, 3003 S. River Road, Baton Rouge, were each booked into Parish Prison on counts of armed robbery, aggravated second-degree battery, aggravated damage to property, false imprisonment and resisting an officer, prison records show.

“I’m glad our guys were close enough to be there in time to where they were able to prevent something else from possibly happening, because you just never know” what could have happened, said Cpl. L’Jean McKneely, a spokesman for the Baton Rouge Police Department.

He added, “We’re also glad someone apparently must have gotten involved. They must have seen something or heard and decided to call the police to come and intervene.”

According to arrest documents, one of the victims answered a knock at the door at about 11:38 p.m. and walked outside to talk to Watson.

After a brief conversation, Watson walked away and the victim took out his cellphone.

While the victim was on his cellphone, police said, Watson returned with Franklin and Moore and struck the victim in the head with a black handgun that police later learned was a BB gun.

The victim ran inside the apartment and locked the door, while the three suspects banged on the door, police said. The attackers threw a piece of concrete through a window, police said, prompting the victims inside the home to flee to a bathroom to hide.

The suspects kicked the door open and yelled at the victims to come out.

After walking out of the bathroom, police said, the victims were forced to strip and then kneel in the living room, police said. Two of the victims were hit repeatedly with the BB gun, police said.

The suspects took a Pantech cellphone from one victim’s pocket and $3 from another victim’s pocket before fleeing just as Baton Rouge police officers arrived, police said.

The suspects were arrested after a brief foot pursuit. Police reported that two of the victims had large cuts on their heads but refused medical treatment.

The victims told police that each suspect took turns holding the gun.