By Matthew Pleasant
Published: Thursday, May 7, 2009 at 12:00 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, May 7, 2009 at 12:28 p.m.
HOUMA — An armed burglary that ended with a homeowner’s brother fatally shooting a suspect was preceded by a rash of similar crimes in the area, deputies said.
Charles Mouton In the weeks before Tuesday night’s shooting, about 15 burglaries occurred, said Maj. Brent Hidalgo of the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office. Within the past month, missing goods including yard tools and even food have been reported to sheriff’s detectives.
The high crime is unusual for the Schriever area, and detectives are investigating, he said.
“It’s a list (of goods) a mile long,” Hidalgo said. “That’s not normal.”
About 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, two brothers who live in the 400 block of West Main Street discovered a pair of men — one of whom was armed with a BB gun — who had broken into one of the men’s garage.
The homeowner, Chris Derocher, and his brother, Bryan Derocher, live on the same property in separate homes.
Bryan Derocher called his sibling that evening when he saw two men walking around the property, deputies said.
When Chris Derocher, who was away from home, arrived, he noticed his garage window was damaged and a motion-sensor light inside the garage was turned on, deputies said.
Chris Derocher and his brother, who was armed with a handgun, opened the garage door and found the two men inside, deputies said.
One of the suspects, Terry Hayes, 34, brandished the BB gun at the men, and Bryan Derocher fired two shots, one of which struck Hayes in the torso.
Hayes died at the scene, deputies said.
Hidalgo said Hayes’ BB gun was indistinguishable from an actual gun.
The other burglary suspect, Charles Mouton, 42, of Thibodaux, was held at gunpoint by Bryan Derocher until deputies arrived.
Hayes had previously been arrested for armed robbery, theft, burglary, illegal possession of stolen goods and illegal carrying of a firearm, among other charges, deputies said.
Mouton had similar arrest history.
Mouton has been booked for simple burglary, aggravated burglary, parole violation and second-degree murder.
He is being held at the Terrebonne Parish jail in lieu of $250,000 bond.
A suspect can be charged with murder if, in the act of committing a burglary, a life is lost, said Carlos Lazarus, first assistant district attorney.
Bonds for the murder and parole charges have yet to be set, deputies said.
Hidalgo said deputies have increased their patrols in the area and are working on the outstanding burglary cases, some of which have been tough to solve because of a lack of evidence.
Deputies are looking into whether Mouton and Hayes were behind some of the cases reported in the past month, he said.
Attempts to reach the homeowner Wednesday were unsuccessful.
Moral to this story, never bring a BB gun to a gun fight...LOL
Staff writer Matthew Pleasant can be reached at 857-2202 or [email protected].