NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Travis Johnson likes to stay behind the camera and was shooting a music video with friends downtown when he heard gunshots Sunday night (Feb. 17).
“Probably 10,15 shots go off and we all stopped and looked at each other,” Johnson said.
He said they immediately jumped in the car, wondering how to help, not knowing if he was driving into more gunfire.
“It was chaotic," Johnson said. “Police everywhere, people were running people were scared to move because they didn’t know which direction to run to because it was shots going off everywhere, plus it was echoing everywhere.”
When he arrived, what he saw was a bloody bus stop. NOPD said five innocent bystanders were injured in a shootout between police and an armed robbery suspect.
Johnson said when he got out of the car he wanted to help, and doing what he always does, he hit record.
“I got closer up on the scene and saw one of the t-shirts the victims had on and there was a lot of blood everywhere,” Johnson said.
By this time, according to NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson, the suspect had already started running from police down Tulane Avenue. A law enforcement source told FOX 8 that suspect was Reginald Romero Bursey, and the shootout between Bursey and officers continued as he tried to run away.
The police chief from Columbus, Texas said they still have an active warrant out for Bursey’s arrest from an armed robbery last September and he is a known member of a Houston gang.
While officers were able to arrest Bursey and transport him to the hospital, Louisiana State Police said it was one of their troopers who shot and killed him during the gunfight. That trooper is on regular duty as the investigation continues, according to state police spokeswoman Melissa Matey
Johnson said he's still reliving what he captured on video that night.
“I was just praying, hoping no one would come back and start shooting again, I’m glad that didn’t happen,” Johnson said.
He said he knows those victims have a difficult recovery ahead of them and says he’s grateful for his safety that night.
“Don’t be scared to pick up the phone and check on your loved ones because that could have been anybody,” Johnson said.
As of Monday night, It was still unclear if the victims were injured by the suspect’s or the officers’ bullets.
Ferguson said the NOPD officers involved in the shootout have been placed on desk duty while an ongoing investigation involving NOPD, Louisiana State Police, and federal agents continues.