ABBEVILLE — Quintylan Richard had been out of prison less than two months Monday after serving time for burglary when he shot and killed an off-duty Vermilion Parish deputy, officials said.
Allen Bares Jr., a 51-year-old Vermilion Parish deputy, had informed Richard and another suspect that he was a police officer before Richard shot him, State Police Trooper 1st Class Stephen Hammons said Tuesday.
Bares was gunned down after encountering Richard, who was on parole, and Baylon Taylor on South Hospital Drive around 4 p.m. Police said the pair had just robbed a home near where Bares had mowed lawns, a side job Bares did for extra money.
Bares was a 12-year veteran deputy, mostly with the Vermilion Parish Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Mike Couvillon said.
“He was gunned down by two murderers when he noticed a crime that had occurred,” Couvillon said. “He was kind-hearted and very spiritual as an individual.”
Following a manhunt that lasted into Monday night, detectives talked Taylor, 19, into turning himself in. Richard was captured at a residence in Kaplan following Taylor’s arrest.
Both men were booked on one count each of first-degree murder of a police officer, unauthorized use of a moveable and burglary and are being held without bond.
Mike Harson, district attorney for the three-parish 15th Judicial District that includes Vermilion, said Monday that prosecutors would seek the death penalty for the man who pulled the trigger.
Hammons said more arrests were expected in the case, which is being investigated by State Police. He did not specify what other arrests are contemplated and for what crimes.
At a news conference Tuesday, Hammons and Couvillon joined other south Louisiana law officers who represented some of the 20 local, state and federal agencies whose hundreds of officers set up a perimeter around south Abbeville in the search for the suspects Monday night.
On Tuesday, with most operating on little sleep, they remained somber.
Hammons released a narrative about the crime that gave some details but kept others behind detectives’ vests, such as the origin of the gun used to kill Bares, its brand and caliber.
Hammons gave this account:
Bares drove up on Richard and Taylor on South Hospital Drive near the intersection of Cougar Drive south of Abbeville, where the two had wedged their car in a ditch — presumably after burglarizing a home near where Bares had mowed a lawn. Bares called dispatchers at the Sheriff’s Office to report two suspicious men before getting out of his truck to confront them.
The suspects confirmed in interviews with detectives that Bares had identified himself as a police officer before one of them — Richard, according to police reports — shot Bares.
Floyd Boudreaux, a 76-year-old retired carpenter who raises cattle, said he heard three shots — the first, followed by a slight pause, then two more in rapid succession. He didn’t immediately look out the door, he said Tuesday, because people are always firing guns in that rural section of Vermilion Parish.
When he did look outside, he saw one man climb into Bares’ truck — which pulled a trailer carrying a John Deere riding lawn mower — and drive north while the other ran back to the car to retrieve something.
The truck and trailer returned, this time heading south on South Hospital Drive, and picked up the second guy. Floyd said he was too far away — a few hundred feet — to see who was driving the truck.
Police found Bares’ truck off Miles Street in Abbeville later Monday night.
Boudreaux said he walked over to where Bares lay, bloodied. A deputy and passers-by also had arrived where the officer lay dying.
“He was lying on his back, still alive. He was talking, but not talking a lot. The other deputy was trying to talk to him,” Boudreaux said. “Poor thing. (The suspects) wanted his truck I guess. And they shot him.”
Taylor, who turns 20 Monday, was awaiting trial for simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling, according to records at the Vermilion Parish Clerk of Court’s Office.
Richard, who turned 20 in late December, has a longer record. Richard’s rap sheet shows arrests for misdemeanors and felonies, including burglary of inhabited homes, dating back to early 2012. He was sentenced to three years supervised probation for his first conviction, for simple burglary, in March 2012.
In February 2013, Richard was arrested again on a burglary charge and put in jail. In September, Judge Durwood Conque sentenced Richard to three years in prison at hard labor, with credit for the seven months in jail Richard had already served.
But on May 1, after serving less than half of his three-year sentence, Richard was released on a “good time” parole, said Pam Laborde, spokeswoman for the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections.
Laborde said Richard had been serving his sentence in Tensas Parish in northern Louisiana.
Sheriff Couvillon on Tuesday stressed the 24-7 rigor of being a police officer.
“You’re never off duty,” he said.
Bares leaves behind a wife and two children.
Bares’ Facebook page overflowed with condolences Tuesday.
“Rest in peace Allen Jr Bares you will be missed,” Torie Rudisill wrote. “Family meant the world to you and I was proud to call you my cousin and my friend.
“I could go on and on about the person you were but I think the posts to your wall says it all,” Rudisill.wrote. “You were a stranger to no one and a friend to everyone. We always joked back and forth about the trips I went on with my family. I think you just got the best trip of all. An eternal trip to Heaven.
“May you rest in peace. Until we meet again, You will be missed. We love you!” she wrote.
Advocate staff writer Ben Wallace contributed to this report.
Editor’s Note: This story was changed on Thursday, June 26, to correct the attribution for the quotes from Facebook at the end of the story.