NewsCovering Louisiana


Opelousas man fatally shot by officer in Point Coupee Parish incident

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Posted at 6:12 AM, Dec 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-23 11:52:08-05

State Police are investigating an officer involved shooting that occurred Wednesday night in Pointe Coupee Parish that resulted in the death of an Opelousas man.

Troopers with the Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations were requested by the Pointe Coupee Parish Sheriff's Office to investigate a fatal shooting involving a deputy and an Livonia Police Department Officer on December 22.

State Police say that an investigation revealed that shortly before 6:00 p.m., on December 22, 2021, a Pointe Coupee Parish Sheriff’s Deputy and a Livonia Police Department Officer responded to a disturbance call on Cleveland Road in the Town of Fordoche.

Area residents had called 911, and reported that a suspect, identified as 48-year-old Jessie Lee Gaither IV of Opelousas, drove his truck through the front of a residence, which resulted in substantial damage.

Gaither then allegedly exited the vehicle brandishing a knife in one hand and a gun in the other. State Police say that after attempting to set the house on fire, Gaither left the residence, walking up the street. Area residents reported the subject’s actions and that he was armed with a gun.

Officers then arrived on the scene they made contact with Gaither.

As officers made contact, he allegedly brandished a knife. State Police say that officers gave Gaither repetitive verbal commands to stop advancing towards them; however, he allegedly refused. An officer then attempted to subdue Gaither by discharging his Taser, but it was unsuccessful. Gaither then brandished a firearm, which was later determined to be a flare gun, and discharged it at the officers.

An officer fired his weapon striking Gaither.

Gaither sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead on the scene by the Pointe Coupee Parish Coroner’s Office.

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