Man seeking fake pot booked in assault

Baton Rouge police early Monday arrested an Independence man who tried to rob a gas station he thought sold synthetic marijuana, then tried to ram the vehicle of the owner’s son, who was trying to lure the assailant away from the store, police said.

The attacker, identified as Laurence Graffeo, 38, walked into the Shell Station at 4454 Highland Road late Sunday and demanded the “product,” which police later learned was the synthetic marijuana “mojo,” according to an affidavit of probable cause.

When the clerk said they didn’t have any, Graffeo pulled a loaded .380-caliber handgun, and, pointing it at the clerk, threatened to kill him if he did not hand over the synthetic marijuana, the affidavit says. A customer walking in spooked Graffeo, who then left the store.

When Graffeo returned to the gas station later, the owner’s son left, trying to lure him from the store to keep the employees safe. Graffeo followed him, trying to ram the son’s car with his vehicle, the affidavit says. Police cornered Graffeo and arrested him soon after.

Graffeo, 122 Webster St., was booked into Parish Prison on counts of attempted armed robbery, terrorizing and aggravated assault.

Victim said to have thrown bottle at shooter

Court documents show the Sunday night shooting on Prescott Road that left one man fighting for his life happened after the victim threw a bottle at the alleged shooter.

Jonathan Foster, 25, 1532 Olive St., Baton Rouge, is wanted by Baton Rouge police on counts of attempted second-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Foster’s arrest warrant shows the victim was standing at an apartment doorway when Foster approached, walking to the apartment of his girlfriend, with whom he had an argument two days earlier.

The victim, knowing about the earlier incident, and Foster exchanged words before the victim threw a bottle at Foster, the warrant says.

Incensed, Foster ran down the stairs while yelling at the victim, pulled a revolver and shot the victim in the chest, the warrant says.

The victim underwent emergency surgery at a local hospital for life-threatening injuries.

Police: Man choked, threatened woman

Sheriff’s deputies issued an arrest warrant Monday for a man accused of choking a Baton Rouge woman earlier that day, telling her she “was going to die tonight.”

The victim, on the verge of losing consciousness, bucked hard enough that she got free of Brandon Maurice Graham’s grip, then jumped through a window while screaming for help, according to the warrant.

As the screaming woman attracted a crowd, Graham slipped away and left in a white Chevrolet Impala, the warrant says.

The victim had “numerous lacerations on her arms and legs from the glass window she jumped through,” Cpl. Brandon Berggren wrote in the warrant. “The victim was also observed to have red markings around her neck (to include swelling) and ruptured capillaries in the corners of her eyes from the incident.”

The victim told deputies that Graham, 28, went to her South Harrell’s Ferry Road apartment about midnight Sunday under the guise of wanting to talk about their relationship. But once her 4-year-old son left the room, Graham became irate while asking her about pictures on her cellphone, the warrant says. Then he allegedly pushed her onto the bed and wrapped his hands around her neck.

Graham, 734 Fontainbleau Drive, Baton Rouge, though the warrant says he may be living in Port Allen, is wanted on one count of attempted second-degree murder.

Authorities book 2 on suspicion of DWI

Authorities arrested at least two people suspected of driving while intoxicated in East Baton Rouge Parish and booked them into Parish Prison between 2:30 p.m. Monday and 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, booking records show.

Those booked and the counts against them:

  • Taylor Langston, 19, 250 Frank Taylor Drive, Downsville, first-offense DWI, driving over the median and driver’s license not in possession.
  • Jesus Vargas, 39, 151 W. Bolq St., Baton Rouge, first-offense DWI, possession of alcohol in a vehicle, improper lane usage and passing in a no-passing zone.

Compiled from staff reports. To talk to a crime reporter at The Advocate, call (225) 388-0369.