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Child hit by stray bullet at Shreveport motel dies; suspect arrested

Joseph Lee Smith, DOB: 7/25/1987
Joseph Lee Smith, DOB: 7/25/1987(Gregg County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Mar. 23, 2021 at 10:20 AM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - The Shreveport Police Department has arrested a man they believe to be involved in a shooting that led to a child being killed.

Officials said Joseph Lee Smith, 34, and another adult male engaged in an altercation on Saturday, March 20 in the Super 8 parking lot on Monkhouse Drive. Smith allegedly produced a firearm and fired a shot towards the male. The gunshot traveled into a nearby hotel room and hit both the mother and child.

On Sunday, March 21, police got info that Smith was at an apartment in Longview, Texas. Officers there were able to arrest Smith. He was booked into the Gregg County Jail as a fugitive. He will be extradited back to Shreveport.

According to court records, Smith is a convicted felon. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison back in 2016 for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, but was released early for good behavior before serving his full jail term.

Image from the scene.
Image from the scene.(Kenley Hargett / KSLA)

Officials say a mother was grazed by a gunshot, while her 5-year-old child sustained a gunshot wound to the head. The child was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. The mother was transported for a minor injury and was later released.

The Shreveport Police Department confirmed Tuesday, March 23 that the child died from her injuries.

The investigation is ongoing.

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