New Orleans police now believe that the pregnant woman and boyfriend found slain in the city's east side were hunted down.
Lionel Delpit III was more excited than anything to welcome his son, Lionel Delpit IV into the world this winter. According to a report from NOLA.com, however, Delpit’s hopes were snatched away when he and his 23-year-old girlfriend, Breon Stewart, were gunned down outside of their apartment in New Orleans.
The shooting took place on Wednesday, December 16 as the two sat together in Delpit’s Chrysler PT Cruiser. Officials believe that one or possibly more individuals were involved in the shooting. After the barrage of bullets ended, the three people in the car, Delpit, Stewart, and the unborn child, were dead.
Delpit’s cousin, Corey Rayford was distraught about the incident. “He was so excited about being a dad. All he talked about was the baby. I’m trying to get my head together. I just don’t know,” said Rayford.
The couple represented the 150th and the 151st homicides in New Orleans in 2015. The shooting, which occurred just before 10pm at the Wind Run apartment complex on 12151 North Interstate 10 Service Road, left numerous shell casings behind. Investigators searched the scene for evidence in the pouring rain that night.
According to Commander Doug Eckert, the head of the New Orleans Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division, the couple appears to have been the victims of a targeted homicide. Detectives are still not sure how many shooters there were, and are currently following a number of different leads.
“There is no good time for a homicide,” Eckert said, “But right before the holidays makes it worse.”
Delpit worked two jobs to prepare for the incoming baby, and acted as the little chief of the Black Feather Mardi Gras Indian tribe, which was started by his father Lionel Delpit Jr. and other family members in the early 1990s. Breon Stewart worked in a clothing retailer as she finished her degree. She was set to graduate next year to become a nurse.
A report from WVUE New Orleans elaborating on the details of the case can be found here.