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Baton Rouge police are questioning a 23-year-old White male in what they believe to be two racially motived killings of Black men, including a dishwasher who was on his way to work at a restaurant popular among Louisiana State University students, according to various media reports.

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Kenneth Gleason was arrested Saturday night on numerous counts of drug charges, but authorities do not have enough to charge him in last week’s shooting deaths of two Black pedestrians, Baton Rouge Sgt. L’Jean McKneely tells The Advocate.

“There is a strong possibility that it could be racially motivated,” McKneely said, writes NBC News. Without elaboration about the motive, he told the Associated Press that shell casings from the shootings linked the deaths and Gleason’s car matched the description of the vehicle witnesses saw at the scene.

In both shootings, the suspect reportedly fired from his car, walked up to the victims as they were on the ground and fired again multiple times, The Associated Press writes.

The first victim, Bruce Cofield, 59, believed to be homeless, was shot Tuesday. Donald Smart, 49, who was walking to Louie’s Cafe where he worked for 29 years as a dishwasher, died Thursday of multiple gunshot wounds. Both shootings occurred about five miles apart between 10:45 p.m. and 11:15 p.m ET, the report notes.

Police confiscated less than a gram of marijuana, along with vials of human growth hormone from Gleason’s home, The AP writes. Bond was set for $3,500 on Sunday evening.

SOURCE: The Advocate, NBC NEWS


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