Serpas apologizes for late release of officer-involved shooting information

New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said the late release of information about an officer-involved shooting was a "snafu" and mistake on the part of the police department, for which he accepts full responsibility.

Officer Lisa Lewis fired a weapon during a traffic stop Monday, striking suspect Armand Bennett, 26, in the head. Serpas the shots were fired following a scuffle between the two. However, the NOPD did not disclose the shooting to the public until Wednesday evening.

Citing the ongoing investigation, Serpas declined to be specific about the sequence of events, but he did say the traffic stop was initiated based on outstanding warrants stemming from a previous incident between Lewis and the suspect in which the suspect resisted arrest and escaped.

Attorney Nandi Campbell, who represents Bennett, disputes Serpas' account of how both incidents unfolded. Campbell says her client has never been convicted of a crime.

Monday's shooting happened in the 3700 block of Mimosa Court in Algiers at 1:20 a.m.

Bennett has been in the hospital for the past two days, but his injuries are not life-threatening, police said. Upon his release he will booked with five outstanding warrants, including illegal possession of a weapon, resisting an officer charges in Gretna and Orleans, possession of marijuana and criminal damage to property. There may be additional charges stemming from Monday's incident.

Officer Lewis sustained a minor hand injury, and was treated and released from the hospital, a police spokesperson said.

Serpas said he signed off on the release of information Monday, but it was never made public.

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