GRETNA, LA (WVUE) - Two men involved in a shootout with police officers Tuesday in Gretna face multiple charges.
Darryl Johnson, 22, faces possession with intent to distribute heroin, conspiracy to distribute heroin, four counts of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated criminal damage to property, being a felon is possession of an illegal weapon, possession of a weapon during a crime and resisting an officer.
Darrin Jones, 23, faces possession with intent to distribute heroin, conspiracy to distribute heroin, being a felon is possession of an illegal weapon and possession of a weapon during a crime.
The incident began Tuesday just after 3 p.m. as the West Bank Major Crimes Task Force was working an undercover drug operation at Claire Avenue and the Westbank Expressway, according to Gretna Police Chief Anthony Christiana.
Christiana said officers were investigating an expected heroin delivery when they spotted the "target car" circling and then driving to the back of a strip mall. When officers blocked the car with their cars to make an arrest, the driver, Johnson, put his vehicle in reverse to try and escape, police said. Johnson then accelerated toward the officers.
In an ensuing exchange of gunfire, one of the officers was hit in his bullet-proof vest. His injuries were not life-threatening. The suspects were hit multiple times.
Johnson was hospitalized in critical condition with a gunshot wound to the face. The second suspect, Jones, was hospitalized in stable condition.
Both suspects have extensive criminal histories and are on probation and parole for drug and weapons charges, according to police. Jones is also on parole until 2019 for second-degree murder.
The Major Crimes Task Force is comprised of officers from the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office, the Gretna Police Department, the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff's Office, the Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office and the Westwego Police Department.