A woman drove her Audi SUV home to the 4300 block of South Rocheblave around 8:45 p.m. Nov. 26, and four people came outside to help her unload the groceries, NOPD Sgt. Ernest Crayton said Wednesday during the Second District’s weekly meeting of ranking officers. A black Chevrolet Trailblazer pulled up, and two men in hooded jackets got out with guns, forcing everyone to lay on the ground and demanding their cash and cell phones, Crayton said.
The men took the money and tried to destroy the phones, though some were protected by outer coverings and still worked afterward, Crayton said. The gunmen left in both vehicles, and no one was injured in the attack, Crayton said.
Investigators believe the Trailblazer the men arrived in had been taken in a previous carjacking in Algiers area, Crayton said. Both SUVs have since been found abandoned, and investigators are working several active leads, Crayton said.
The victim did not appear to have been targeted or followed home, Crayton said.
“Those guys were just looking for a victim and happened to see her,” Crayton said.
Crayton also provided updates on two other recent robberies:
- After the arrest of 44-year-old Demetei Lewis in connection with a Nov. 17 attempted armed robbery in the 8700 block of South Claiborne, investigators are now looking for help identifying another man believed to have information about the case. His photo is at right.
- Investigators are looking for new leads into a robbery case involving a woman who was badly injured on Jeanette Street, Crayton said. Surveillance video from the Willow Street bus barn captured the woman walking prior to the incident, but no attackers appeared on the video, and thus far no other video has surfaced. Investigators were also unable to pinpoint the location of the attack, which has hampered the collection of evidence in the case, Crayton said.
Anyone with information about any of the above robberies should call Second District investigators at 658-6020, or call CrimeStoppers at 822-1111 to leave an anonymous tip that could be eligible for a cash reward.
The Second District is poised to end the year with a dramatic reduction in armed robberies over 2012. As of Wednesday, 50 armed robberies had been reported in 2013, down 35 percent from the 77 armed-robberies reported by the same point in 2012. The clearance rate is 36 percent, well above the national clearance rate of 23 percent for armed robberies in cities of 250,000 to 500,000 people, said NOPD Second District Commander Paul Noel.
“These clearance rates are some of the best in the city,” Noel said.