At 4:38 a.m. Dec. 16, Red River Parish Sheriff’s Communications received a call in reference to a possible home invasion in progress at a residence located on Grand Bayou Loop off LA Hwy 1 north. A Red River Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy patrolling in the area was in close proximity and responded. Shortly after turning onto Grand Bayou Loop, the deputy observed a vehicle traveling towards him in the direction of LA Hwy 1. He activated his overhead lights, positioned his unit across the roadway, exited his vehicle and gave verbal and visible commands in an effort to stop the driver.
The driver ignored all commands and almost struck the deputy as the vehicle accelerated. The vehicle then turned south onto Hwy 1 as the deputy pursued. The deputy observed multiple items being tossed from the vehicle as it reached speeds in excess of 85 mph. The items were later recovered and determined to be items taken from the crime scene. Approximately 3 miles into the pursuit, just south of Harmon, the driver attempted to turn off the roadway into a private road.
When he attempted the turn, he lost control and ran off the private drive to the left just before crossing the railroad tracks. The vehicle became stuck in the rocks that line the railroad tracks. A second Red River Parish Deputy had set up at the intersection of Hwy 1 and La. Hwy 177 preparing to deploy spike strips.
Four occupants exited the vehicle, each fleeing on foot in different directions. Deputies immediately began a search of the area. Other deputies continued to the residence and began clearing the home to make certain no suspects remained on scene.
Deputies discovered the suspects removed a window air conditioning unit to gain entry into the house, but never entered the dwelling. Two vehicles parked outside the home had been burglarized. At 5:08 a.m. the alleged driver, Isaiah Woodward, was located and taken into custody without incident, while a search for the others continued.
The RRPSO K-9 unit, along with the departmental drone were deployed during the search. Personnel and resources from Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office, Desoto Parish Sheriff’s Office, Winn Parish Sheriff’s Office, David Wade Correctional Center and the La. State Police assisted in the search. While investigators interviewed Woodward, the search led deputies to what appeared to be a pick up site for the remaining three suspects. It was later determined they contacted someone via cell phone to drive to the area and pick them up.
After determining the subjects were no longer in the area, at 10:30 a.m. the search was discontinued. Later the same day, investigators identified a 16-year-old male juvenile as one of the three suspects. He was questioned, interviewed and subsequently arrested. The two remaining suspects, including a second 16-year-old male juvenile and a 17-year-old male, were also identified. They were questioned the following day and subsequently arrested. During the course of the investigation, investigators learned the crime was not random, but stemmed from a discussion on social media regarding the sale/purchase of a firearm.
On Dec. 16, Isaiah J. Woodward, w/m, 19, of the 4900 block of Hwy 494, Natchez, was booked into the Red River Parish Jail (RRPJ) charged with Reckless Operation of a Vehicle, Attempted Home Invasion, Principal to Burglary of a Motor Vehicle, Aggravated Assault with a Motor Vehicle upon a Peace Officer, Aggravated Flight from an Officer, Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery and Theft of a Firearm. Bond was set at $35,000 and he remains incarcerated in the RRPJ.
On Dec. 17, Nicholas H. Davis, w/m, 17, of the 200 block of Peninsula Drive, Natchitoches, was booked into the RRPJ charged with Attempted Home Invasion, Simple Burglary of a Motor Vehicle, Theft of a Firearm, Principle to Aggravated Assault with a Motor Vehicle Upon a Peace Officer, Principle to Aggravated Flight from an Officer, Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery and Theft of a Firearm. Bond was set at $35,000 and he remains incarcerated.
Both juveniles were charged with Attempted Home Invasion, Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery, Simple Burglary of a Motor Vehicle, Theft of a Firearm, Principle to Aggravated Assault with a Motor Vehicle Upon a Peace Officer, Criminal Damage to Property and Principle to Flight from an Officer. Both were incarcerated at Ware Youth Center, Coushatta. Both juveniles posted a $15,000 bond and were released to parents.
The investigation is ongoing and additional arrest(s) and/or charges are pending.