Update: Friday, 8 p.m.

A 20-year-old man arrested in the fatal shooting of his mother Thursday night did it accidentally during an argument about continuing to live with her, a Baton Rouge Police spokesman said Friday.

Sgt. L’Jean McKneely said Melissa Clay, 37, was arguing with her son, Dexter Clay Jr., 20, about having him leave the house and was pushing on him when his handgun fell out of his pocket onto the ground.

Dexter Clay leaned down to pick up his gun while his mother was hitting him. As he pulled away from her, he accidentally pulled the trigger shortly before 5:45 p.m., McKneely said.

Melissa Clay was shot once in the chest. Dexter Clay tried to help her, McKneely said. Once police arrived, she was taken to an area hospital but died a short time later.

Dexter Clay, 4138 E. Brookstown Drive, was arrested and booked late Thursday on counts of negligent homicide and theft of a firearm, jail records show.

McKneely said Clay cooperated with police officers and turned over the gun but officers arrested him because the shooting happened during an argument.

McKneely said Clay had minor injures from the dispute.


Authorities on Thursday night arrested a 20-year-old man in the shooting death of his 37-year-old mother at their house on East Brookstown Drive, Baton Rouge Police said. 

Police responded to the shooting at 4138 E. Brookstown Drive around 5:45 p.m., BRPD spokesman L'Jean McKneely said. The woman, who has not been identified, died at a local hospital shortly after being shot, he said.

She was shot in the torso, said spokesman Sgt. Don Coppola.

This story will be updated as more details become available.