NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - New Orleans Police say a second suspect in a Mardi Gras double shooting is on the run. While he's wanted for attempted murder, the NOPD says there's been an uptick in murders in the city.
The NOPD believes Jerald Bordere, 18, pulled the trigger in the double shooting that happened Mardi Gras Day on the parade route near Union and St. Charles. Around 3:15 that afternoon, a fight broke out and two people were shot, one in the head and one in the leg. Last week, officers arrested another suspect, Kentrell Howard, 17. He now faces two counts of principle to attempted murder. But, police say Bordere and a third suspect remain at large.
"It is our understanding there may be individuals who have helped him flee New Orleans possibly to the Texas area or are helping him flee New Orleans so, we would urge those individuals as well as himself to turn himself in," said NOPD 8th District Commander, Nicholas Gernon.
There were three separate shootings on Mardi Gras, another on the parade route at Second and St. Charles that killed a man. And in a third, five people were shot in the Lower 9th Ward, two of which died.
"Well, certainly there's an issue with guns and I think that's really where the major problem occurs. If these rates continue we will have the highest homicide rate since what, 2011 where we had almost 200 homicides, so this will be over 200 if we stay at the current rate," said Dillard University Criminologist Ashraf Esmail, Ph.D.
New Orleans Police say murders are up in the city nearly 18%. There's been 39 homicides to date this year compared to 33 during the same time frame last year. What's more? The NOPD believes a significant portion of the shootings they've seen since Mardi Gras week are linked to gang activity and retaliation.
"The key word you just mentioned, retaliation, we seem to be in a time where we retaliate very harshly to situations, you look at some of these things and you read about them and you're wondering well how did that end up in a homicide, it doesn't make any sense," said Esmail.
As for the Mardi Gras shooting near Union and St. Charles, police say one person remains in the hospital.
"The victim that was struck in the head is still unconscious, we have not been able to talk to him, he's still in ICU," said Gernon.
While homicides are up, the NOPD says non-fatal shootings are down by 40% and armed robberies have decreased by 51%.