Musician struck in head by stray bullet during concert in Houma, police say
HOUMA, La. (WVUE) - A Louisiana musician is recovering from what authorities are calling a non-life-threatening injury after being struck by a stray bullet during a concert in downtown Houma.
According to the Houma Police Department, officers responded to a call of shots fired around 8:30 p.m. on Saturday (May 13) in the area of Suthon Ave. and Third Street. Police say they found several shell casings, but no suspect or victims.
About 14 minutes later, a member of The Josh Garrett Band, which was performing at Luminate Houma (hosted by Lumiere Blues & Jazz Bistro), reported being struck in the head by an unknown object. Officials later determined the object to be a stray bullet, possibly from the shooting a little less than a mile away.
“We were playing right there in Downtown Houma, by Bayou Terrebonne. We were taking a small break, and the bass player just kind of collapsed,” Garrett said. “Initially, we thought someone had thrown something, a rock. When the police came, they said they had been responding to another event where shots had been fired. The lightbulbs went off, we kind of figured it was a round that had fallen down onto the top of his head.”
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The bass player asked not to be identified by Fox 8, but Luminate Houma set up a GoFundMe page to help him cover medical expenses. Garrett said doctors decided to leave the bullet in his head for now.
“This may be the first incident that I know of that we’ve had, and I’ve been here 24 years,” said Houma Police Chief Travis Theriot. “Somebody was on his side that night to be hit and survive something like that. It’s terrible that somebody can’t go to a family event, and something that someone does nowhere near there, and it causes you an injury like this. This is ridiculous.”
Theriot said he and other members of law enforcement constantly preach the dangers of firing a gun into the air. He said no suspects were on scene at Suthon and Third, but that detectives are working to piece together the parties responsible.
“Our investigators are working on it and hopefully we can get some closure for the victim, try and figure out why someone would do something so stupid and fire a weapon into the air,” Theriot said.
The investigation remains ongoing.
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