Teens with guns lead police on high-speed chase
New Orleans Teens Burglarize Two Gun Stores - Lead Officers on High-Speed Chase
Five New Orleans teenagers are in custody for leading Slidell Police in a high-speed pursuit, after burglarizing two gun stores. It is believed that the five teenagers are part of a much larger group who have been plaguing St. Tammany, Orleans, and Jefferson Parish with burglaries, carjackings, and robberies.
Shortly before 3:00 a.m. this morning (Monday, April 27, 2020), Slidell Police responded to a burglar alarm at Paulie’s Pistols (3805 Pontchartrain Drive) and discovered the glass front door was shattered. Officers discovered a suspicious red Mercedes sedan in the area and attempted a traffic stop. The driver of the vehicle led officers on a high-speed chase across the I-10 Twin Span bridge and into New Orleans.
A Slidell Police officer, who was waiting at the foot of the bridge, deployed spike strips and successfully ended the pursuit. The suspects are also believed to have burglarized another gun store in Covington, earlier in the morning. That incident is being investigated by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.
During the chase, the suspects began throwing several guns out of the car’s windows and on to the side of Interstate 10. Police located the weapons and discovered they were stolen from a previous gun store burglary at F.I.T.S. Indoor Range, which occurred earlier this month on April 2nd.
Slidell Police, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office have been investigating a string of gun store burglaries, all of which occurred over the past two months.
F.I.T.S. Indoor Range was burglarized on March 7th and April 2nd, and Arms Merchant, LLC (Mandeville, LA) was burglarized on March 29th. This past Friday, the ATF, in conjunction with the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) was joined by New Orleans Crimestoppers, and were offering a reward of up to $12,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the gun store burglaries. Those cases are still under investigation, and the reward is still being offered.
The five teenagers, caught earlier this morning are, just a small part of a much larger organization of juvenile criminals from New Orleans.
Earlier this month, Slidell Police had another encounter with four teenagers in a stolen car. The teens were caught by a Slidell Police K-9 unit after leading officers on a high-speed chase throughout the city. The juveniles, who are also believed to be affiliated with this burglary ring, were all from New Orleans and linked to burglaries, carjackings, and stolen guns.
Slidell Police Chief Randy Fandal says, “I’ve said it time and time again, and my stance hasn’t changed. If you come to the Northshore to commit a crime, you will be caught. I will not stand for it, nor will our citizens. We work hard to keep a safe community, and we aren’t going to allow these teenagers to come and plague our city. My message to anyone thinking about preying on our community is this…we will not stop at the parish or state line. We will pursue you until you are apprehended.”
All five teenagers will be booked into the Florida Parishes Juvenile Detention Center with various burglary charges and possession of stolen firearms. The investigation is on-going and is being worked in conjunction with the ATF, St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana State Police, and NOPD.
*NOTE* The photos posted are from various social media accounts of some of the suspects who are apparently posing with stolen guns. The red Mercedes was the vehicle used in last night’s incident.