LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - City Officials have released a statement on the Lake Charles officer-involved shooting of Juston Joseph Landry.
On Jan. 11, Landry, 26, was fatally shot by a Lake Charles Police Officer. LCPD says the officer was responding to a weapons complaint around 12:51 a.m.
Together, Mayor Nic Hunter and Lake Charles Police Chief Shawn Caldwell spoke Friday afternoon at City Hall, although they declined to comment on the specifics of the investigation because it is under investigation by Louisiana State Police.
“What happened last Friday resulted in the death of an individual and anytime that happens, no matter the situation, it is a tragedy so we continue to keep the family of Mr. Landry in our prayers, we continue to keep the family of the officer involved in our prayers and we continue to keep this entire community in our prayers,” Mayor Hunter said. “Anytime you have a situation like this, it’s very serious and we immediately turned this case over to the state police because we want a thorough, transparent and complete investigation of what took place. We understand that there are some out there that want answers and want them today, but quality investigations that are transparent and thorough, especially when you’re talking about from the Louisiana State Police, are not always immediate. We have turned everything over to the Louisiana State Police and we await the outcome of their findings.”
Caldwell said: “We realize the gravity of this, and that is why we have, as the mayor said, asked for an independent investigation by the Louisiana State Police. This is an example of our commitment to accountability. Like he said, realize, with these skilled investigators, it takes time. It’s a deliberate, methodical, detailed process that requires time and we owe this to Mr. Landry, the family, the officers involved and the community.”
Hunter asked the community to stay together.
“We understand there’s a lot of emotions involved in this, but we have reached out to leaders in the community where this took place, we met with them almost immediately, we tried to get them together immediately, because we believe that Lake Charles is a community that can get through some of these issues,” Hunter said. “We call upon this community to stay together in this time and await the outcome of this investigation.”
State police on Thursday released the initial report as part of a public records request by KPLC.
The initial report says Landry “presented” a handgun during an argument with a store clerk and when confronted by a Lake Charles Police Department officer.
Police were called to the RaceWay gas station in the 1200 block of MLK Hwy. The officer located Landry about a block away. The shooting took place in the 1000 block of MLK, near the intersection with Pineview Street.
The initial report was compiled by state police, which is investigating the shooting at the request of Lake Charles police.
The complaint says that state police learned that a male subject, later identified as Landry, became involved in a verbal argument with a clerk at RaceWay. Landry “presented” a gun and threatened the clerk.
Landry then left the store and headed south on foot on MLK Drive, according to the report. The police officer located Landry, who “presented a handgun and refused to comply with commands.”
The report goes on to state that a short foot pursuit ensued, ending with an “encounter that resulted in (Landry) being shot multiple times.”