Police: Burger King shooting suspect followed victim for miles

19-year-old arrested for drive-thru shooting in St. Charles Parish

ST. CHARLES PARISH, LA (WVUE) - Investigators say 19-year-old Damon Bryant was determined to commit a crime Wednesday morning.

"Something bad was going to happen somewhere that morning, and it was going to be the first place that this victim stopped," says St. Charles Parish Sheriff Greg Champagne.

Champagne says Bryant began targeting his victim in Elmwood at a Capitol One bank. The 30-year-old victim works as an ATM provider and was picking up thousands of dollars in cash to re-stock ATM machines.

When he left the bank, Champagne says Bryant followed him.

"The wrong person saw the wrong thing at the wrong time, and he saw that cash and he wanted it," Champagne says.

The ATM worker decided to stop for some food in Boutte, and at first pulled into the Racetrac in the 14000 block of Highway 90. The credit card machine there was down, so he instead decided to grab lunch at the Burger King across the street.

"The victim's in the drive-thru line and he gets his food. As he drives away from the drive-up window, he stops for a second to check his order, and I'm sure that pleased the robber because it conveniently gave him his opportunity," Champagne says.

The sheriff says Bryant walked up to the car, pointed a gun at the victim and demanded money.

The victim, though, tried to drive away.

"As he is leaving, the perp fires a shot. The victim had his arm up in a defensive posture, and is struck above the elbow," says Champagne.

He is recovering in the hospital. During the course of the investigation, deputies say they obtained multiple surveillance videos that showed exactly what unfolded. Jefferson Parish deputies arrested Bryant at his home in Avondale Thursday night.

"In our arrest of him last night in Jefferson Parish, it was able to give us additional information that we were able to link him to three different incidents that occurred between July 20th and July 27th," says Chief Deputy Joe Lopinto.

Lopinto says Bryant committed three armed robberies in Jefferson Parish, including last week's armed robbery of Copeland's restaurant on Clearview.

Sheriff Champagne says the St. Charles incident could have turned out much worse.

"This victim was shot in the arm in a defensive way, so by the grace of God and a couple of inches of aim, we could have had a deceased victim laying in the parking lot of  that Burger King," says Champagne.

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