BILOXI, Mississippi – A 4-month-old used as a human shield while the child’s father was involved in a shootout with police following a police chase in two states on Monday has died.
Authorities revealed on Tuesday that the child died in hospital. The little boy has been identified as La’Mello Parker.
The child was hospitalized as a result of the police chase and transferred to the University Hospital in Mobile, Alabama, from Biloxi.
“Despite the efforts of medical staff, the child died from the injuries sustained,” Biloxi police said.
The child’s father was killed as a police chase on I-10 ended in Biloxi. Earlier today, the father, identified as Eric Smith, 30, shot and killed his ex-girlfriend and the woman’s nephew at a house in Baker. Smith fled the scene with the 4-month-old.
State Police said they were aware of Smith’s movements as he left Louisiana for Mississippi, pursued by law enforcement for part of the ride – most of the stretch of 40 miles he drove in Mississippi. State police said no AMBER alerts had been issued because the whereabouts of the child was known to authorities.
During the pursuit in Mississippi, Smith was involved in a shootout with law enforcement and used the child as a shield. Smith and the child were both shot. Smith died at the scene in Harrison County, Mississippi.
The chaotic and violent day began just before lunchtime when the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Deputies answered Richmond Street in Baker after a 911 call was disconnected. The deputies who responded found two people shot dead.
Christin Parker, 32, and Brandon Parker, 26, were murdered. Parker is Smith’s ex-girlfriend, authorities have said.
In Baker, an eyewitness described a horrific scene.
The victim’s daughter ran to a neighbor for help, exclaiming: “She heard two gunshots and they shot her mother,” an eyewitness said.
“I came over there and went into the room and tried to choose [Parker] to see if I could help… but she was lifeless and there was… too much blood coming out of her head, ”the witness told WBRZ.
Later, when Smith was spotted on the freeway, numerous law enforcement agencies began a two-state chase, from Louisiana to Mississippi.
Click here to watch the I-10 chase video
Click here to watch video of police deploying spike bands during chase
After hitting spike strips, the vehicle Smith was driving finally rolled through a grass median on I-10 East at kilometer 40 in Biloxi. His car got stuck and as Smith got out of his vehicle he was shot and killed by police.
Biloxi police did not disclose how the child was shot.