Bradley Parvez told a 911 dispatcher Thursday morning that a man in a black hooded sweatshirt was trying to steal a bicycle from the side of the house where he was staying, New Orleans police documents show.
But Parvez apparently did not wait for police to arrive at the house on Fern Street. Instead, he opened fire on the man through the front door, killing him in the yard.
The account of what led to the fatal shooting comes from an application for an arrest warrant for Parvez filed Thursday afternoon, providing the first explanation of why he shot at the still-unnamed 35-year-old victim, who was unarmed at the time.
Neighbors said they heard about five shots, three or four in rapid succession followed by one final pop, about 10 a.m. in the 1900 block of Fern Street. There was no commotion beforehand, they said.
Arrest documents list the Fern Street house as Parvez’s address, but neighbors said it belongs to his mother and he was only visiting or staying there temporarily.
After the shooting, detectives interviewed Parvez, 31, at police headquarters. He declined to give a statement, according to police and his attorney, and was booked on a count of second-degree murder.
The application for an arrest warrant says the shooting appeared to have happened from inside the home, noting a glass panel on the front door was shattered.
The document also says there was no sign that anyone had tried to break into the home, a fact that could figure prominently in whether Parvez is ultimately deemed to have been justified in shooting the man.
Autumn Town, Parvez’s attorney, has declined to comment on the case, but she has said that shootings involving one person on another’s property can be legally complicated.
But Dane Ciolino, a Loyola University law professor, said the facts that police have released so far seem to make the matter almost an open-and-shut case.
“If the victim was attempting to get into the house and the shooter was inside, a whole host of favorable presumptions would arise that would make the shooter’s case — self-defense — strong,” Ciolino said. “However, if the victim was not trying to break into the house but was attempting some type of property crime, then the self-defense case is questionable.”
He said Parvez would have been within his rights to go outside and shove or even punch an alleged thief.
“That would have been proportionate to the crime,” he said. “The deadly force is disproportionate.”
Parvez is a former soldier, having served as an Army specialist from July 2001 to October 2010, according to military records.
He also was a New Orleans Police Department recruit from March 2005 to February 2006, when he resigned. Parvez graduated from the Police Academy but never finished his field training and left the department under investigation, according to Tyler Gamble, an NOPD spokesman.
Gamble said the investigation centered on whether Parvez could obey authority and on the accuracy of the reports he wrote up, as well as the possibility that he may have abandoned his assignment during Hurricane Katrina.
Parvez remained jailed Friday. His bail was set at $250,000.
Follow Danny Monteverde on Twitter, @DCMonteverde.