Louisiana state trooper shot in the head with sawed-off shotgun during a weekend traffic dies from his injuries

NewsBy Neil Fetherston
Steven Vincent
Steven Vincent

A Louisiana state trooper who was shot in the head with a sawed-off shotgun during a weekend traffic stop died on Monday morning, police said, as authorities praised the good Samaritans who rushed to his side.

Authorities plan to charge Kevin Daigle, the accused shooter, with first-degree murder in the death of Steven Vincent, 43. Vincent had been attempting to help a motorist whose pickup truck was apparently stuck sideways in a ditch, Col. Michael Edmonson said.

Edmonson said police video shows Vincent, a 13-year veteran of the state police, offering assistance to the apparently stranded man.

The video then shows the pickup truck door opening and Daigle coming out with a shotgun. Edmonson said the tape shows the shotgun blast.

After the shooting, Edmonson said, Daigle wandered into the road and walked over to Vincent, asking him if he was alive. Edmonson said the gunman tells Vincent: "You're lucky — you're going to die soon.'"

Colonel Mike Edmonson, head of Louisiana State Police, said 54-year-old Kevin Daigle, of Lake Charles, was arrested at a hospital after other motorists saw the injured policeman and wrestled him to the ground.

Daigle faces charges including attempted first-degree murder of a police officer.

Colonel Edmonson said the officer died at a hospital in Lake Charles, Louisiana, on Monday as a result of his injuries. 

In a statement on its Facebook page, Louisiana State Police said: "I am very saddened to report that Senior Trooper Steven Vincent has passed away this morning from the gunshot wounds he suffered yesterday in conjunction with a traffic investigation.

"As an organisation, we are heartbroken over this senseless and tragic death. Our thoughts and prayers are with his surviving wife Katherine and his son Ethan as well as his entire extended family."

He told a news conference that video footage showed Trooper Vincent trying to talk a man out of the truck.

He said the truck door opened and Daigle came out armed with the shotgun. At least two or three pellets from the blast hit the officer in the head.

Trooper Vincent was a 13-year veteran who was married to Katherine and has a nine-year-old son Ethan.