A Louisiana state trooper who was shot in the head with a sawed-off shotgun during a weekend traffic stop died on Monday morning, police said, as authorities praised the good Samaritans who rushed to his side.
Authorities plan to charge Kevin Daigle, the accused shooter, with first-degree murder in the death of Steven Vincent, 43. Vincent had been attempting to help a motorist whose pickup truck was apparently stuck sideways in a ditch, Col. Michael Edmonson said.
Edmonson said police video shows Vincent, a 13-year veteran of the state police, offering assistance to the apparently stranded man.
The video then shows the pickup truck door opening and Daigle coming out with a shotgun. Edmonson said the tape shows the shotgun blast.
After the shooting, Edmonson said, Daigle wandered into the road and walked over to Vincent, asking him if he was alive. Edmonson said the gunman tells Vincent: "You're lucky — you're going to die soon.'"
That's when two or three drivers stopped, one of them spinning around on the two-lane highway. That driver wrestled the shotgun away from Daigle, Edmonson said. With the help of the others, he got Daigle to the ground and snapped Vincent's handcuffs on his wrists.
At a news conference on Monday, Edmonson applauded the civilians who rushed to the trooper's aid, singling out the motorist who grabbed the gun.
"I couldn't be more proud to know this man," Edmonson said of the good Samaritan, who stood at his side. The driver declined to speak but was visibly teary-eyed and choked up. He received a round of applause.
Vincent is survived by his wife and 9-year-old son.