A Zachary man was arrested Wednesday on negligent injuring after a 2-year-old child found the man's gun and shot an 8-year-old child in April, according to a Baton Rouge police arrest warrant.
Police said 30-year-old Johntra Jermane Bell left a loaded handgun in the front passenger door of a vehicle, where the toddler found it on April 24. The toddler then accidentally shot an 8-year-old boy in the shoulder, which caused him to be hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries, according to Bell's arrest warrant.
The boy was initially taken by a private vehicle to Baton Rouge General Mid-City, but because that hospital no longer has an emergency room, Emergency Medical Services took the boy to Our Lady of the Lake Hospital, according to previous reports and Bell's arrest warrant. Investigators initially said they believed the incident happened in the 3500 block of Victoria Drive.
After the incident, Bell took the gun and left the scene, police say. Despite attempts by investigators and the mother of the injured child to get the gun from Bell, detectives never obtained the weapon. Officers issued a warrant for Bell's arrest on negligent injuring and obstruction of justice on May 8.
A Louisiana State Police trooper located Bell during a traffic stop on U.S. 190 Wednesday morning after noticing that the vehicle Bell was driving did not have a license plate, according to an additional arrest report for Bell. The trooper discovered that Bell had a fake temporary tag and a warrant for his arrest.
Bell, of 5056 East Central Ave., Zachary, was booked in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on switched license plate, expired driver's license, failure to register vehicle and the arrest warrant.