Police: Suspect IDs alleged gunman in toddler’s death

The man arrested Thursday for allegedly firing the shot that killed 13-month-old Londyn Samuels and wounded her 18-year-old baby sitter was identified as the gunman by another suspect booked in the shootings.

According to court documents, 24-year-old Keelen Armstrong told investigators that a friend he called “Dee” was responsible for the shooting. Armstrong identified Dee as 19-year-old Darnell Ramee.

Both men have been booked on charges of first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder.

The baby sitter told police that she saw Armstrong and Ramee at a friend’s home on Aug. 29 at the same time she was there. It was there, she told police, she saw Armstrong hand a 9 mm gun to Ramee, according to court documents.

A short time later, the baby sitter was carrying Londyn as they walked in the 2800 block of South Saratoga Street. A little after 8 p.m., two men walked up from behind and at least one of them opened fire, hitting the woman in the back twice, with one of the bullets traveling through her body and piercing the toddler in her neck or head.

Police have not said if they believe Armstrong also fired a gun. State law, however, allows for a person to be charged in a killing if he is not directly responsible for a person’s death but there is evidence he aided in the crime or was present when it happened.

Police have declined to discuss a motive in the shooting.

Armstrong was arrested Wednesday for driving 80 mph on Interstate 10 in New Orleans East. About the same time, homicide Detective Robert Barrere identified him as a suspect and booked him in the case.

After Armstrong allegedly identified Ramee as the gunman, police and federal authorities found him Thursday afternoon at a home in the 2900 block of Paris Avenue.

Magistrate Judge Gerard Hansen set bond for Armstrong at $1.2 million, while bond for Ramee, the alleged gunman, was set at $500,000.

A funeral for Londyn will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church, 1807 LaSalle St. Visitation begins at 10 a.m.