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Louisiana Shooting Suspect Busted After Manhunt

Alleged shooter Dakota Theriot busted in Virginia after overnight manhunt
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 27, 2019 6:01 AM CST
Updated Jan 27, 2019 8:59 AM CST
This undated photo provided by Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office shows Dakota Theriot. Authorities in Louisiana say separate but related shootings Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019, in Livingston and Ascension...   (Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office via AP)
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(Newser) – Authorities in Louisiana hunted overnight for Dakota Theriot, the 21-year-old accused of killing five people on Saturday, but it was police in Richmond County, Va., who made the arrest early Sunday, reports the AP. He's to be returned to Ascension Parish to face at least two charges of first-degree murder. Meanwhile, more details are emerging about the victims: Theriot's parents and Billy Ernest, 43; his son Tanner Ernest, 17; and his daughter Summer Ernest, 20. Officials say Summer Ernest is believed to have been Theriot's girlfriend; he had been living with her family in Livingston Parish for several weeks. In a Saturday night news conference, Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard said authorities do not have a motive. They have spoken with Summer's mother, who said there were no red flags.

Authorities say Theriot was not on their radar (the Advocate reports his prior arrests are related to drug possession) and that they had never been called to his family's home. But Billy Ernest's sister said, "My family met him last weekend at a birthday party and didn't get good vibes from him." The AP reports there were two children in the Livingston Parish home who were unharmed: a 7-year-old who fled the house with a one-year-old and went to a neighbor's. Theriot allegedly drove 25 miles south to his parents' home after the shootings at the Ernest home; Ascension Parish Sheriff Bobby Webre says Theriot's father was found "gravely injured" and in a "dying declaration" identified his son as the shooter. Theriot had previously lived with his parents; a neighbor said "yelling matches" could be heard from the home. (Read more shooting stories.)

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