Woman accused of shooting wildlife agent pleads guilty

Arrested: Amethyst Baird (Courtesy: OPSO)
Arrested: Amethyst Baird (Courtesy: OPSO)
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BENTON, La. (KNOE) - The woman accused of shooting a Louisiana Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries agent pleaded guilty on Monday. 31-year-old Amethyst Baird, of Monroe, was charged after Agent Tyler Wheeler was shot several times during a traffic stop in Morehouse Parish between Sterlington and Bastrop around 2:00 am on January 7th, 2017.

According to District Attorney Steve Tew, Baird pleaded guilty to all four counts, which include:


  • Attempted first-degree murder of a police officer
  • Obstruction of justice
  • Illegal possession of a stolen vehicle
  • Illegal possession of a stolen firearm

What's next for Baird

Baird's trial was being held in Bossier Parish after a change of venue. She will continue to be held in Morehouse Parish without bail until her sentencing. Sentencing has been scheduled for January 26th at 9:30 am at the Morehouse Parish Courthouse.

Tew says he plans to have Agent Wheeler and another witness testify at Baird's sentencing hearing.

Back in August, Amethyst Baird's attorney motioned for her to be examined by a medical doctor. Baird's attorney claimed she had suffered a concussion just days or weeks before Wheeler was shot. That motion was denied for lack of evidence such a thing happened. At the time, the defense said they were still trying to get video of the incident. It's unclear at this time whether this issue will be brought up again during sentencing.

Baird already sentenced on other charges

Monday's developments are not the first consequences for Baird in the case. She was previously sentenced to 10 years for illegal possession of stolen things and 10 years as second time offender for possession of meth. The sentences are to be served consecutively.

Her attorney said they plan to file an appeal in that case, back in September. How this latest development will affect those plans remains to be seen.

Another suspect, 34-year-old Jeremy Gullette, is also charged in the case. Gullette is charged with one count of accessory after the fact to attempted first-degree murder. He is currently awaiting trial.

Wheeler back at work

Meanwhile, Agent Tyler Wheeler has recovered and returned to work. He was cleared to return to work in late July following several surgeries. Wheeler was back in uniform on August 4th and returned to patrol duties on August 14th.

Wheeler also released a statement to us at that time, saying, “I would like to thank everybody who has made it possible for me to return to work especially the doctors who got me stabilized and put back together, the rehab personnel, my family and the enforcement division for always being there every step of the way.”



 
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