BATON ROUGE, LA – Every parent’s, father’s and police officer’s worst nightmare: A city police officer is mourning the loss of his two-year-old son after a shooter sprayed bullets into the home where his son resides.
Vince Hutchison, Jr. is a police officer in New Roads, LA, a town just north and west of Baton Rouge. Vince had finished a shift and then went to spend time with his son.
He’d just taken him back to the boy’s mother’s house when the unthinkable happened. Azariah Christien Thomas, just two years old, was hit by bullets fired into the house.
Speaking about the shooter, Hutchison explained:
“He really took an angel from this earth.
“Christien was loved by many and showed love to many.”
Hutchison went on to explain that this wasn’t a drive-by shooting, and that the shooter is known.
The shooter was identified as Kendrick Myles of Baton Rouge. Hutchison stated that the man exited his vehicle and fired directly into the house where his son was.
The Baton Rouge Police Chief, Murphy Paul, said that Myles kicked in the front door to the home before starting to shoot.
A clear motive has not yet been released, nor information as to whether the shooter had any type of relationship to the boy’s mother.
This child’s murder culminated a violent evening for Myles as at least four incidents were reported.
The first incident was in Baton Rouge, where Myles shot a family member. That person’s injuries weren’t life threatening.
Myles then kidnapped a nine-year-old child, a family member, from a home in East Baton Rouge Parish. It was then that Myles fired shots into the home on Upland Avenue where Christien Thomas was.
The last incident occurred back in Baton Rouge, where Myles shot another family member. Myles released the nine-year-old and was captured after a stand-off with police.
Myles is being charged with first degree murder, six counts of attempted first degree murder, attempted second degree murder, three counts of illegal use of a weapon, three counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, home invasion, and being a fugitive from the Baton Rouge Fire Department for an arson investigation, and the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office is charging him with kidnapping.
There is a history here that cannot be refuted.
In 2017, when Myles was a released convicted felon, his probation was revoked because it was reported that he was threatening his family members with a firearm.
When he was arrested in relation to the revocation, he was found with illegal drugs and at least one firearm. His formal arraignment included charges for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, possession of marijuana, and possession of a firearm by a felon.
Myles’ attorney filed a motion to dismiss the charges but was denied at a final hearing in August of 2018. It is unclear how much, if any, time Myles served for these convictions along with his probation violation.
It is clear, however, that he was free and walking around this past week when he fulfilled his promises and threats to harm family members.
One could easily cry out for gun control or the intervention of law enforcement into this shooter’s life. The fact is that the man had an established history of drug trafficking and violent outburst towards his family yet was allowed to walk free.
We can lambaste the justice system for not doing more, but it is the family and community that have lost a step here. When you allow someone with a proven track record like this around your family or community, you accept the consequences of their actions and resulting travesties.
There is a heartbreaking realization that can be gleaned from this: our police officers risk their lives on a daily basis, thrusting themselves into situations that are dangerous and unpredictable, and most officers think that making it home at the end of a shift is the end to the danger.
This scenario proves that the fear and worry can be easily compounded by the reckless and illegal acts of a family member or acquaintance.
This officer made it home safe from his shift and spent quality time with his son, only to lose him in a split second through something the officer couldn’t control.