Concerns arise over parade route safety after shooting on Canal

Concerns arise over parade route safety after shooting on Canal

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - New Orleans police say parade-goers will be safe this Mardi Gras, despite two shootings on Canal Street in broad daylight.

"I was just in my hotel room and I heard pop, pop, pop, pop, type of unusual sound," tourist Barry Landsberg said Wednesday.

That sound was gunfire, erupting on busy Canal Street around 2:30 in the afternoon.

"The perpetrator who we have under arrest produced a firearm, shot the victim once to the face," NOPD Supt. Michael Harrison said.

The entire incident was caught on surveillance video. The shooting happened just hours before parade-goers lined Canal, and a day after someone opened fire three blocks away at Canal and Rampart, critically wounding a man in mid-afternoon.

"We're putting police officers out here to make sure you're safe. These people are making conscious decisions to do that on their own, but we are apprehending them," Harrison said.

Preventing the shootings from happening in the first place is what people we spoke to would like to see.

Justin Shaver says, "Yeah, I would say, yeah makes me pretty nervous."

Dorothy Chillis had plans to attend Wednesday night's parades, and says, "Tonight we were going to get the children, but my God, you don't want to bring the children out here."

Police say the alleged gunman, 24-year-old Justin Lewis, got into an argument with the victim before shooting him. The video shows the two pass each other on the street before Lewis allegedly pulled the gun. The aftermath sent people running for cover. Officers were already in the area for Mardi Gras patrols.

Harrison explains, "What we know is they heard gunfire and they were close enough to see what was going on after it took place."

The officers saw a man they identify as Lewis running toward Burgundy Street and quickly arrested him.

Police say they confiscated a weapon when they arrested Lewis. He's being held in Orleans Parish Prison without bond.

Lewis had prior arrests for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and illegal possession of a weapon. He's now booked with attempted second-degree murder and illegal possession of stolen firearms.

The victim in the shooting is listed in stable condition.

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