A suspect has been arrested in the homicide of 17-year-old Garon Lewis, the New Iberia Senior High student who was shot and killed Aug. 16.
Garon, the son of Iberia Parish School Board member Raymond “Shoe-do” Lewis, was found shot in his vehicle near the intersection of Audrey and Rene streets in New Iberia around 9:20 p.m. Aug. 16. At a NISH vigil Aug. 28, friends and family remembered Garon as a kind, encouraging and steady friend who was an earnest listener and good advice giver.
New Iberia Police Chief Todd D’Albor announced the arrest of 20-year-old Trevonce Bernard, of New Iberia, at a press conference Tuesday morning. Bernard was apprehended Monday night and booked into the Iberia Parish Jail on counts of second-degree murder, illegal use of a firearm and aggravated criminal damage to property, online jail records show.
Bernard’s bond has been set at $820,000, the chief said, according to a KATC live stream.
D’Albor declined to elaborate on Bernard’s arrest or the accused's potential motive, citing the ongoing investigation, but did say this is the first stage of the investigation and law enforcement believes more details will be uncovered. He said investigators will ferret out any other individuals involved and encouraged the public to continue submitting tips.
“It’s a senseless tragedy. It’s something that should not happen in any community, especially here in New Iberia where we’re building trust and our community is starting to come together,” the chief said.
Garon’s father Raymond Lewis thanked law enforcement and community members for their support. Lewis reflected on the troubled feeling that plagued him Aug. 16 and his prayers to the Lord for the feeling to abate.
Instead, hours later, there was a knock on the door from Garon’s best friend. Before Lewis and his wife, Roxy, made it to the car, Mayor Freddie DeCourt and Chief Todd D’Albor were pulling up to deliver the news of their son’s death, he said.
Along with his prayers for peace, Lewis said he had prayed to see his son’s graduation. Though that will never happen, Lewis said he took comfort in the belief his son is in heaven.
“I said Lord…let me live long enough to see my baby graduate. Let me live and then after that whatever your will is for me, please let it be done,” he said. “The graduation I was talking about was the walking with the cap and gown, but the graduation he got, it was a greater graduation because…he is present with the Lord. What greater graduation for Christians and those that believe?”
In his statements, Lewis also reiterated his family’s request that there not be retaliation for his son’s death. He made the same request at the NISH vigil, calling on community members to have faith law enforcement will achieve justice.
The grieving father and law enforcement officials called for an end to violence in New Iberia and the surrounding parish.
“This was a senseless death. We do not need this in our city, and no one should have to go through this,” he said.