Todd “T.J.” Toups Jr. was a senior at St. Amant High School, enjoyed theater and choir, led a youth group at his church and was the type of person who wanted to make everyone happy.
“He was the greatest young man you could ever want to meet in your life,” his aunt, Deborah Brouillette, said Sunday. “And I’m not just saying that just because he’s my nephew.”
Brouillette said Toups, 18, was not a fighter.
So when he was fatally stabbed Saturday while picking up a girl before the homecoming dance, Toups’ family could not believe he was involved in a fight.
Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley said in a news release Saturday that Toups stopped by a residence at Cobb’s Trailer Park on Roddy Road shortly before 4 p.m. to pick up the girl, who was a friend, when he was stabbed.
The Sheriff’s Office suspects a 16-year-old Baton Rouge boy who recently transferred from St. Amant High School to Woodlawn High School was responsible. He was at the same residence as Toups on Roddy Road to visit a different friend.
The release says Toups and the boy, who was not identified because he is a juvenile, began to argue and the boy stabbed Toups. He was taken to a Baton Rouge hospital where he later died.
Brouillette said the family has text messages from the girl whom Toups went to pick up Saturday that explain what happened and will be turned over to investigators.
“They’re acting like T.J. had a fight and that didn’t happen,” Brouillette said. “T.J. is not a fighter. He didn’t have a weapon.”
Toups was a “good boy,” his aunt said. He was involved in his school as well as his church, Household of Faith in Gonzales.
The 16-year-old was booked into the Assumption Youth Detention Center with no bail on a count of second-degree murder, the release says.