NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - A burglary suspect who was shot by a homeowner in New Orleans East was arrested Wednesday, and police are looking for others who may have been involved.
The NOPD arrested 18-year-old Imani Smith in connection with a home burglary in the 6700 block of Foch Street.
At around 12:30 p.m., officers responded to a shooting on Dorian Street. When they arrived, they found Smith on the ground with a gunshot wound to the thigh. Witnesses told officers that Smith had broken into a home on Foche.
When officers relocated to Foche, the homeowner told them that he had received a phone call from his daughter, who said people had broken into their home and she had barricaded herself in a room.
The homeowner said he rushed to house armed with a gun and chased the suspects into the backyard. He said it was there that he thought Smith was trying to pull a gun out on him, so he fired multiple shots at Smith, hitting him in the leg.
According to the homeowner, Smith jumped over the fence and later collapsed on Dorian Street.
"The thing is, he shouldn't have been coming in that man's house, you know? And that's what these young people need to know," said neighbor Damon Williams. "Burglarizing - don't come in nobody's house. We're all hard working-class people around here. And they need to do something better than that."
Smith is being treated at the hospital. Once he is released, he'll be booked into Central Lock-Up.
During the initial investigation, police said they found items taken from the home in Smith's possession. Officers also recovered the homeowner's weapon and are in the process of questioning witnesses, the victims and the suspects.
No charges have been filed against the homeowner.
Police also arrested a 15-year-old male in the area for an aggravated assault that occurred several days ago involving the same homeowner. Detectives are investigating that incident, which had initially gone unreported to police, as well as the teen's potential involvement in today's incident.
The NOPD Seventh District Investigative Unit is in charge of the investigation and can be contacted at (504) 658-6070.
Citizens with information that can help solve this crime are asked to call Crimestoppers at 822-1111 or toll-free 1-877-903-STOP. You could receive a cash reward of up to $2,500 for the information leading only to the arrest, except on homicides, where Crimestoppers will pay half of the reward upon the arrest and half on the indictment of the responsible person(s). You do not have to give your name nor testify to receive the reward but you must contact Crimestoppers directly with your information. Citizens can also submit an anonymous tip online to Crimestoppers at www.crimestoppersgno.org.