DONALDSONVILLE — The stepfather of the man slain in his front yard Monday said Ascension Parish Sheriff’s detectives told him they feel confident the perpetrators will be caught.
Marvin Gros, stepfather of Chad Nichols, said Tuesday that detectives are in touch with him regularly.
“They’ve been keeping me abreast; all the detectives feel very positive” of bringing Nicols’ killer or killers to justice, said Gros, a Donaldsonville attorney.
Nichols, 37, was gunned down and killed in his front yard, at 178 Latino St., close to 3:30 p.m. Monday. A second man shot at the home, Benny Booker, 29, 54054 Spellman Wall Road, Prairieville, was taken to a hospital but died of his injuries.
Assailants fled in Booker’s white Dodge Magnum, with Louisiana licence plate YPC 682, Chief Deputy Tony Bacala said Monday.
Surveillance video captured the Dodge speeding through Donaldsonville following another vehicle also believed involved in the homicide.
That vehicle appears to be a 2008-2011 white BMW 3 series, Bacala said.
Latino Street is a quiet street off La. 308, lined on both sides with large lots and neat homes and trailer homes.
A memorial had been set up by Tuesday in front on Nichols’ trailer home, where his work shoes and tennis shoes are neatly lined up on a shelf outside the door.
Purple and gold LSU balloons and black and gold Saints balloons waved in a slight breeze Tuesday afternoon in a circular garden planted with pansies and daisies.
The memorial, Gros said, had been made by Nichols’ sister, Casey Gros Hood.
Gros said Nichols’s son, Cade Hernandez, lives with his mother in Harahan and turned 14 on Saturday.
“It’s been very tough,” Gros said.
Nichols had begun his own pressure-washing business this past fall and, before that, worked as an electrician at area plants, Gros said.
“He was very personable,” Gros said. “Nobody ever said anything bad about him.”
The shootings of Nichols and Booker bring to four the number of people shot in Donaldsonville in the last week. The other two, a sheriff’s deputy and a teenager, survived their separate shooting injuries, and arrests were made in both cases.
A prayer rally that had been scheduled for Monday, before the shootings of Nichols and Booker, went ahead that evening in Donaldsonville’s downtown square.
The organizing group, Answering the Call, is trying to turn the tide on crime in the city.
“We’ve never had anything like this, ever,” Donaldsonville native Marcie Madere, at work in an insurance business on Marchand Drive, the main street in Donaldsonville’s downtown, said Tuesday.
“I grew up here, I’m from here,” she said. “We’ve had crimes happen, randomly, every couple of years” but nothing like that of the first month of the new year.