NewsCovering Louisiana


Auto shop owner accused of hammer attack on suspected thief

Posted at 5:20 PM, Dec 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-12 18:20:39-05

GRETNA, La. (AP) - An auto body shop owner has been accused of kidnapping a man he believed stole tools from his business and then smashing the man's hands with a hammer during a beating in his shop.

Chad Baxter, 37, saw someone on surveillance video last month stealing $7,000 worth of tools from his shop, Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Capt. Jason Rivarde told The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate.

Baxter reported the burglary to the sheriff's office, Rivarde said. He told authorities he recognized the man in the video as "Dorian", who was hired for a day to clean up around his business. The sheriff's office obtained an arrest warrant for Dorian Lewis, 39.

Lewis later told authorities that Baxter spotted him Thursday at a store and forced him into a vehicle at gunpoint. The sheriff's office says Baxter allegedly beat Lewis at the back of his auto shop.

Baxter flagged down a passing deputy and presented the injured Lewis, Rivarde said. Lewis told investigators about the retaliation for the reported theft.

Baxter was arrested Thursday and charged with second-degree battery and second-degree kidnapping.

Lewis had surgery for his injuries and was charged with simple battery after his release from a hospital.

It's unclear whether either man had attorneys who could speak for them.