Keelen Armstrong, 24, has been arrested on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of 1-year-old Londyn Samuels on South Saratoga Street last week, authorities announced Wednesday evening. Armstrong is also charged with the attempted first-degree murder of Samuels’ babysitter, who was wounded in the shooting, police said.
Armstrong was stopped for speeding on the interstate near Crowder Boulevard in New Orleans East early Wednesday morning, and Officer Ernest Bringier found that he was driving with a suspended license and had outstanding arrest warrants from Gretna, so Bringier arrested him, according to a NOPD news release. Around the same time, Homicide Detective Robert Barrere determined that Armstrong was a suspect in the Samuels death, so Armstrong was brought in for questioning and the eventual murder charges, the release states.
Authorities have said at least one other person may have been involved.
“I’d like the people of New Orleans to recognize that it took this police department less than 7 days to make an arrest in this case,” said NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas in the news release. “Our Sixth District officers, crime scene technicians, firearms examiners and homicide detectives put hours and hours of hard work into this case. They’re dedicated officers, and they’re also dedicated members of this community. They were determined to identify those responsible for killing this baby.”Meanwhile, investigators want to speak with 33-year-old Keith Ward about the circumstances surrounding the death of 11-year-old Arabian Gayles in a shooting in the 1300 block of General Ogden Street on Monday, the release states.
“They believe Ward was on the scene of the crime early Monday morning, and they think he may have critical information that can assist in the investigation,” the release states.
Anyone with information in either case is urged to call CrimeStoppers at 822-1111. The reward for tips in the cases has been raised to $5,000.