Four people accused of murder in shooting that left one IHOP employee dead, another hurt

mega shooting
Source: MEGA

Jun. 25 2021, Published 11:05 p.m. ET

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Four people have been arrested in connection to a shooting that killed an IHOP employee outside the restaurant in Baton Rouge, Lousiana, police said.

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Investigators are looking for a fifth suspect in the case, Trevell Jarrell.

Two men, a third female suspect and a juvenile were arrested and booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison overnight, WBRZ 2 reported.

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The men have been identified as Melvin Brooks Jr., 21, and Tyrese Keller, 20. Sources told WBRZ 2 that the juvenile has been identified as Najee Skipper.

Investigators believe Jarrell and Skipper shot the two IHOP employees on May 25 with the help of Brooks and Keller.

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One of the victims, Courtney Whitfield, died at the scene. The other worker was seriously wounded but survived, according to authorities.

Police used video surveillance and eyewitness accounts to identify the suspects.

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Shermane Molden, a female friend of Brooks, is also facing charges. She traveled to IHOP with Brooks, Jarrell and Keller that morning to scope out the restaurant. Molden later confirmed she let the suspects use her vehicle, a silver Hyundai, later that day.

After the morning trip to IHOP, they dropped Molden off at a Baton Rouge apartment.

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Investigators say Jarrell and Skipper then used a stolen blue Toyota Matrix to go back to IHOP, where they shot the employees around noon, according to WBRZ 2.

Detectives watched video surveillance, which showed Jarrell and Skipper sitting in a parking lot adjacent to the IHOP for about half an hour until the two employees exited the restaurant for a break.

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At that point, officials say the two gunmen pulled up to IHOP and fired multiple shots at the employees.

The Toyota then fled the parking lot. The car was later found engulfed in flames in a neighborhood a few miles from the site of the shooting, WBRZ reported.

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Footage from the neighborhood shows the two suspects running away from the vehicle and heading west, police say. The two were seen getting into Molden’s car in a nearby church parking lot.

The two then picked Molden up from the apartment where they had dropped her off that morning. An intensive investigation followed, including multiple interviews with eyewitnesses, which led to the arrests.

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Keller, Brooks and Molden were booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on first-degree murder charges.

Skipper, the juvenile, was also arrested on charges of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, simple arson, obstruction of justice and illegal possession of stolen things.

Anyone with information on Trevell Jarrell's whereabouts can contact the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office at (225) 389-5000.


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