Police: Jailed man linked to deaths

Marlon Romaine Carter’s luck ran dry in an alley about two weeks ago when Baton Rouge police cornered the elusive convicted felon while he was in possession of a revolver.

Since then, police say, while Carter has been jailed, witnesses have identified him as the triggerman in two mid-July fatal shootings that occurred in Baton Rouge just four days apart — not long before police chased Carter into the alley near the North Boulevard bridge because his bicycle lacked proper lighting.

Cpl. L’Jean McKneely, a police spokesman, said Tuesday that witnesses most recently came forward identifying Carter, who turned 42 on Monday, as the man who shot and killed Travis Jones, 22, on the night of July 10. The shooting occurred near North 17th and Convention streets, just a few blocks north of where police captured Carter on July 23.

Police less than a week ago identified Carter as the man accused of fatally shooting Charles Vincent, 59, the night of July 14. That shooting occurred on Florida Street near where Jones was fatally shot.

Investigators have not found any connections, excluding the witness statements, between the deaths of Jones and Vincent other than that bullets of the same caliber were found at both shooting scenes, McKneely said.

It’s unclear whether the bullets were shot from the same weapon, he said.

Carter, who has recent addresses in Zachary and Monroe, was booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on July 24 after police chased him into the alley. He ditched his bicycle and hopped a fence taller than most professional basketball players, but police were able to corner him in the alley, where they found him hiding behind an air conditioner, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Carter is accused of throwing some items onto the roof of a nearby building while police chased him. But the items — a cellphone and a Smith & Wesson revolver — later slid off the roof and landed where Carter was hiding, the affidavit says.

Police booked him into the Parish Prison on counts of resisting an officer by flight and felon in possession of a firearm. They also booked him on an unrelated Sheriff’s Office warrant on counts of domestic abuse aggravated assault, aggravated battery and child desertion.

That warrant stemmed from a February incident near Zachary in which deputies say Carter hit a woman in the head with a handgun, causing lacerations needing 35 stitches and 14 staples to close. The woman, no age available, told a deputy that Carter threatened to kill her and her infant daughter, who was present during the ordeal, after Carter looked through the woman’s cellphone and accused her of cheating on him.

The disturbance unfolded in the 21900 block of Samuels Road, where the deputy arrived to find the woman screaming for help on Feb. 24. The deputy secured the woman and her 2-month-old child in her patrol unit before chasing after Carter. But Carter escaped, the warrant says.

Carter, however, was unable to escape police in the alley near the Trevor J. Sims Memorial Bridge, also called the North Boulevard bridge.

Police saw Carter just after midnight on July 23 riding his bicycle in the 1600 block of North Boulevard. The affidavit doesn’t indicate whether Carter was a suspect in any killings at the time.

An officer noticed Carter’s bicycle was not equipped with a working tail light or head light, the probable cause affidavit says.

When the officer tried to stop him, Carter pedaled faster. He eventually jumped off his bike and leapt over a fence at least 7 feet tall before finding himself trapped in the alley, where police took him into custody.

The counts Carter has been booked on now include: first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, second-degree murder, illegal use of a weapon, felon in possession of a firearm, resisting an officer, domestic abuse aggravated assault, aggravated battery, child desertion and second-degree battery.

Before factoring in any additional bail set on the first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder counts, Carter’s bail totaled at least $400,000, booking records show.

Follow Ben Wallace on Twitter, @_BenWallace.