NOLA Police ID Parade Shooting Suspect

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
May 14 2013 10:59 AM

With Help of Surveillance Footage, NOLA Police ID Parade Shooting Suspect

Screen shot 2013-05-13 at 11.12.03 AM
A digital still released by New Orleans police on Monday

Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

The surveillance camera images may have been blurry, but it didn't take long for New Orleans police to use them to name a suspect in Sunday's shooting at a neighborhood Mother's Day parade in the city's 7th ward. Police on Monday identified 19-year-old Akein Scott as the alleged gunman caught on tape fleeing the scene, where 19 were wounded.

Scott, who has previously been arrested for possession of a firearm and narcotics charges, was IDed by several people after the surveillance footage and stills were released, according to police, who say they are now searching for the suspect. Superintendent Ronal Serpas, who called Scott "no stranger to the criminal justice system" late Monday, had no problem issuing a stern and very ominous-sounding warning, as the Associated Press notes:

"We would like to remind the community and Akein Scott that the time has come for him to turn himself in," Serpas said at a news conference outside of police headquarters. A photo of Scott hung from a podium in front of the police chief. "We know more about you than you think we know," he said.
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At this time, it's still unclear what prompting the shooting in the first place. Police had previously suggested that there were as many as three gunman, although they'll need to wait on the ballistic evidence from the scene to know for sure.

This obviously isn't the first time surveillance videos and other digital images have been crucial in aiding investigators search for suspects in a mass shooting. Last month, Boston Marathon bombing suspects Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were identified after the FBI released images and raw video footage to the public.

Jennifer Lai is an associate editor at Slate. Slate Plus members, email her here.

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