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Palmetto man arrested on first degree murder charges

Posted at 3:33 PM, Nov 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-06 16:52:31-05

MORROW, La. — The St. Landry Parish Sheriff's Office have arrested a Palmetto man for charges of first degree murder and attempted second degree murder.

Sanplice Simien, 43, of Palmetto, was arrested by SLPSO deputies on two counts of first degree murder and two counts of attempted second degree murder.

According to a release from SLPSO, deputies were dispatched to the 100 block of Cook Street in Morrow on Oct. 5 in regards to a shooting.

Upon arrival, deputies say they were directed to what appeared to be an abandoned mobile home. Deputies located a silver colored truck parked in the driveway with a deceased male, who was later identified as Michael Dawain Thomas, inside the vehicle.

Detectives state that Thomas was involved in a heated argument with Simien days before the shooting. Additionally, they say that Simien was robbed in the Morrow area by Thomas at gunpoint days prior while an unknown individual removed $1,200 - $1,400 from Simien’s back pants pocket.

Investigators say that upon further investigation, it was determined that Thomas along with Ladarious Keller, Emerick Simon and another person were in a vehicle at a residence on Cook Street in the Morrow area when they were ambushed.

Detectives state they were able to place Simien near the scene of the shooting during the course of their investigation.

When Sanplice neared the vehicle, investigators say, he began shooting at the unsuspecting victims and he then fled the area. Thomas died at the scene.

SLPSO state that a Cook Street resident came to the assistance of Keller and Simon and drove them to a local hospital.

Keller died as a result of his injuries at a local hospital, while Simon was treated for multiple gunshot wounds. A third passenger was not injured in this incident and remained at the scene, according to police.

SLPSO state that Simien was booked on Nov. 4, at the St. Landry Parish Jail. A bond has been set for Simien in the amount of $700,000.

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