Shreveport Mayor Releases Statement in Wake of Violent Weekend
In an all too familiar scenario gunshots rang out again late Friday night, early Saturday morning in downtown Shreveport. When the smoke cleared one man was dead, at least one other wounded.
Caddo Parish Coroner Dr. Todd Thoma released the name of the victim of the downtown shooting. John Ruffin Jr., 41, of the 7200 block of Union Avenue, was shot multiple times in the 400 block of Commerce Street just before 2:30 a.m. He died at 3:15 a.m. at Ochsner LSU Health hospital. Ruffin becomes the 42nd homicide in Shreveport in 2023.
In other shootings across the city, 26 year old Eric Scott died on Wallace Avenue. 28 yearold Antonia Smith was killed on Murray Street over the weekend.
“Overnight brought more disturbing gunfire to Shreveport, killing at least three people in separate incidents. My heart hurts for the victims and their families, and I know I speak for the entire City when I extend our sincere concern and condolences. All the incidents are under vigorous investigation by the Shreveport Police Department.
“Shreveport Police Chief Wayne Smith is calling in officers for overtime to put more officers on patrol tonight in high crime neighborhoods and downtown to have a greater presence in these locations immediately. SPD will marshal all available law enforcement, including neighboring and cooperating agencies, to put as many law enforcement personnel on the street as possible.
“SPD and the Administration are considering additional remedies that may involve local legislation and other oversight. The Administration understands that the Council intends to call a Public Safety Committee meeting next week, and the Administration will cooperate fully with the Council and others with ideas on how best to respond to the serious increase in gun violence in our community.
“As always, the City calls upon any person with knowledge about any of these crimes to call SPD at 318-673-7300 and ask for the detective desk, or to call Crimestoppers at 318-673-7373. You may call anonymously. Information leading to an arrest may result in a cash reward, as much as $2,000.
“SPD’s experience is that most or all of the weapons used in the violent crimes we have experienced this year in Shreveport are illegal weapons or are used by people who do not have the
right to use or possess them. Do not leave your weapons exposed or in an unlocked vehicle. Protect your weapons from unauthorized use or theft. Report stolen weapons immediately, including serial numbers in the report.
“The community must band together to put away the perpetrators of these outrageous acts. This is a difficult problem, and we must all be part of the solution. We must make Shreveport a safer place again.”
Downtown nightclub owner Tim Huck, who has been an advocate for endorsing the city's noise ordinance, released the following statement:
These were not club patrons. These were individuals hanging out in the streets. ￼ Video surveillance throughout downtown shows them partying and dancing on Spring Street just a minute before this ￼ incident
For over a year , I have asked the Shreveport police department to enforce the city noise ordinance . They have refused to do so. I have spoken to the Mayor just two weeks ago, who promised something would be done . Nothing has been done . As a result the DJs at downtown club Haze , managed by Patrick Brown, which has an open air rooftop setup, continue to play music from the 2 story rooftop with their speakers aimed towards the streets. The music can be heard for blocks . This attracts underage people and loitering of non club patrons in the streets outside and around the club blocking traffic , dancing , with no police supervision - a very predictably dangerous combination in Shreveport .
The sheriff and police chief had a recent press conference and pledged this dangerous activity supposedly would end . Despite multiple calls from myself, other businesses, and downtown residents , nothing has happened , and the nonsense continues in downtown Shreveport .
In social media posts , the manager of Haze has equated asking spd not to enforce the noise ordinance to racism and as an attack on something termed "the culture" . I do not know what "the culture" is that promotes underage people to be out after curfew , loiter , cause mayhem , and block traffic in the streets , and clubs' music to disturb the sleep of hotel guests and downtown residents Peaceful patrons and visitors looking for a good time are afraid to enter downtown Shreveport at late night hours for fear of getting caught blocked in a street where SPD and the sheriff have apparently abandoned all semblance of law and order.
Another senseless shooting in Shreveport, tacitly and unwittingly authorized by senseless city leaders. I will continue the fight to force the city of Shreveport to enforce the laws ... of the city of Shreveport .
Huck told KEEL News at least three other people were injured in Friday night's shooting, including one of his employees who was hit by a richocheting bullet. The employee suffered non-life threatening injuries.
Shreveport Police released the name of the suspect in Friday night's shooting. SPD has issued a warrant for 2nd Degree Murder for 29 year old Brandon Batiste. Police ask that if you have any information on Batiste's whereabouts to please call Crime Stoppers at 318 673-7373
Caddo Parish Violent Offenders for 7/8-7/14/23
Gallery Credit: Caddo Correctional Center
Caddo Parish Violent Offenders for First Week of July 2023
Gallery Credit: Caddo Correctional Center