BR police investigate fatal shooting on Sparta Avenue

Baton Rouge police are investigating the fatal shooting of an 18-year-old man Wednesday afternoon in the 1900 block of Sparta Avenue.

Police Cpl. L’Jean McKneely said the victim, whom police have not identified, was shot in the midsection and taken to a local hospital, where he later died.

McKneely said investigators are looking for suspects and trying to determine the motive for the shooting, which occurred at 3 p.m.

Timmie Gonzales stepped outside because she thought she heard fireworks Wednesday afternoon. “Then I heard someone scream,” she said.

Gonzales said she ran outside her apartment on Sparta Avenue, just off La. 19 near Clifford T. Seymour Sr. Park, and soon found a group of people huddled around a wounded young man.

The man seemed OK at first, she said, and then he started gasping for air.

Gonzales said she told the man’s companions to tear off his bloody shirt and put pressure on the gunshot wound in his side.

“I just sat with him, and we prayed, and we waited for the ambulance to come,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales said she saw several people jump into two vehicles and leave right after the shooting.

Cedric Carter, a maintenance worker at the apartment complex, said a fight broke out among a handful of people and several gunshots were fired.

Carter said Wednesday’s shooting was the first violent incident at the complex in the nearly 10 years he’s worked there.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers at (225) 389-7867.