A sprawling police chase that led officers around Uptown and Mid-City New Orleans and caused several crashes Tuesday afternoon began with gunfire on Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard and has resulted one arrest, but investigators are still trying to determine exactly how all the events fit together, they said Wednesday.
Around 4:10 p.m. Tuesday, officers outside the Sixth District station heard gunfire ring out nearby and almost immediately received a call of shots being fired near O.C. Haley Boulevard and Felicity Street about three blocks away, said NOPD Lt. Frank Young at the Sixth District’s weekly meeting to recap of major crimes Wednesday. As officers responded, bystanders pointed toward a Lexus SUV that Sgt. Daniel Scanlan tried to stop at South Claiborne Avenue and Martin Luther King Boulevard, but it pulled away, prompting a chase that led onto Interstate 10, over to Carrollton Avenue, around Palmetto Street, around Xavier University and down to South Claiborne, Young said.
During the pursuit, several minor crashes were reported, including at least one involving police vehicles. Ultimately, however, the vehicle escaped from police, Young said.
Back at the original crime scene, investigators found nine shell casings and a gun clip on O.C. Haley Boulevard near Felicity, and witnesses described the shooting as one dark-colored sedan firing on another, Scanlan said. Investigators later learned that the Lexus SUV may have been provided by another individual, Scanlan said, but when they questioned him, he denied any involvement. He was, however, found with a loaded, stolen handgun, and was charged with illegal possession of it, Scanlan said.
Despite the number of rounds fired, no victims ever surfaced at local hospitals, and police do not believe anyone was shot in the incident, Scanlan said. The investigation is continuing, he said.