“Louisiana is an open-carry state. The guy was straight-up legal,” Police Chief Rick Richard said of the armed citizen’s firearm (in plain view) on his side on April 4, 2016.
“Although Mr. Breland’s death is a tragedy, this office agrees that the shooting was legally justified under the circumstances and will not pursue criminal changes based on the evidence submitted to date,” Montgomery said in a news release that also included surveillance camera video of the incident which confirmed the armed citizen’s account of the incident.
After completing their investigation, Mandeville police concluded Shawn Breland, 42, of Folsom, was the aggressor at the Shell gasoline station and convenience store. On Friday, St. Tammany Parish District Attorney Warren Montgomery confirmed the legally-armed citizen who fatally shot Folsom will not be prosecuted.
The armed citizen, who was inside the store trying to make a purchase, tried to calm the situation by telling Breland to leave, according to the police account. The citizen followed Breland outside to get his license plate for police, but Breland got out of the vehicle and attacked him, police said.
The citizen drew his weapon, ordered Breland back and retreated into the store, but Breland followed and continued the attack, grabbing for the gun, according to authorities.
After backing into a corner of the store and still under attack, the man fired one round, striking Breland, and fired twice more when Breland kept coming at him, police said.
While I can already hear our reader’s comments saying the armed citizen should not have left the convenience store to get Breland’s license plates in the first place, but think the countless stories we’ve also covered of people leaving an argument to retrieve a gun from their vehicle or house. He had no way of knowing what Breland was leaving the store to do.
His actions were justified and I’m sure the store clerk would agree that it’s a good thing he was armed and shot straight.