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La. officer fatally shoots armed drug dealer

By Walt Philbin and Daniel Monteverde
The New Orleans Times-Picayune

JEFFERSON PARISH, La. — A detective with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office fatally shot a man Wednesday night suspected of taking part in a drug deal, said Sgt. Larry Dyess, a sheriff's spokesman.

Following a tip of a possible drug deal at the Home Sweet Home Motel in the 4200 block of Airline Drive, plainclothes detectives with the special investigations division on patrol in the area approached two men in the hotel's courtyard parking lot.

The deputies were on patrol because of a recent rash of armed robberies in the area, Dyess said.

The detectives approached the two men, Dyess said, and an argument broke out in which one of the men began to fight with one of the detectives.

During the struggle, the man pulled a semi-automatic gun from his waistband and pointed it at the detectives, Dyess said.

At this point, one detective fired a single shot, fatally wounding the man. It was not yet clear where the victim was struck.

Deputies had identified the man but were not yet releasing his name or age, Dyess said. There was a record, however, that he had checked into the hotel.

The second man did not appear to be involved with the fight, Dyess said, and investigators were questioning him and looking for additional witnesses.

Charges are pending on the outcome of the investigation, Dyess said.

During their initial investigation, deputies found a small crack pipe on the scene, Dyess said.

Anyone with information about this shooting should contact Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111 or toll-free at (877) 903-7867. Callers do not have to give their names or testify and can earn up to $2,500 for tips that lead to an indictment.

Copyright 2008 The New Orleans Times-Picayune

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