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Nov 7, 2015 7:20 PM

Louisiana police arrest 2 officers in autistic boy's death

The Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS (AP) Two Louisiana law enforcement officers remained jailed Saturday while their colleagues tried to sort out the details that led to the death of a 6-year-old and the severe wounding of his father in a hail of gunfire.

Derrick Stafford, 32, of Mansura, and Norris Greenhouse Jr., 23, of Marksville, each faced charges of second-degree murder and second-degree attempted murder. They were being held in the Avoyelles Parish jail.

The dead child was 6-year-old Jeremy Mardis, who was in a car being driven Tuesday by his father, Chris Few.

State police said Stafford is a full-time lieutenant with the Marksville Police Department; Greenhouse is a full-time city marshal. Both were working part-time as deputy marshals in Marksville's Ward 2 when Tuesday's shooting broke out, state police said.

Any alleged motive for the shooting has not been made public. State police, who are investigating the shooting, said there so far has been no evidence found that Few had a gun.

There were initial reports Stafford and Greenhouse were among a group of marshals serving a warrant on Few. However, Col. Mike Edmonson, superintendent of Louisiana State Police, said at a news conference Friday night that there was no evidence that a warrant had been issued. That remained the case Saturday according to a state police, Trooper Scott Moreau.

Edmonson gave few details about the investigation or what led to Friday's arrest of the two law enforcement officers. He did say the probe included review of body cameras and 911 recordings. He also asked anyone with information about the shooting to contact state police.

"Six years old," Edmonson said of the child. "He didn't deserve to die like that."

He also called the video he reviewed "the most disturbing thing I've seen, and I will leave it at that."

Marksville City Marshal Floyd Voinche Sr. issued a statement this week saying the deputy marshals were certified as having undergone Peace Officer Standards and Training. He said he was cooperating with the state police investigation and declined any other comment.

Few's 57-year-old stepfather, Morris German, earlier in the week accused the marshals of indiscriminately opening fire on the vehicle. German said Few was heavily sedated after the shooting, unable to talk and had bullet fragments lodged in his brain and lung. He described Few was a loving father and added the man's son "was his whole life."

German added that the 6-year-old had been diagnosed with autism, describing him as a delightful child who "loved everything, everybody." German said the boy had no siblings and the family had recently moved to the town of Marksville from Hattiesburg, Mississippi.


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