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Police: Baby allegedly kidnapped from Baker area home dies

Eric Derell Smith
Eric Derell Smith(East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office)
Published: May. 4, 2021 at 8:20 AM CDT|Updated: May. 4, 2021 at 11:05 AM CDT
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HARRISON COUNTY, Miss. (WAFB) - A double homicide suspect from the Baker area and the baby he allegedly kidnapped are both deceased, according to the Biloxi Police Department.

WLOX-TV, WAFB’s sister station in Biloxi, Miss., reported the suspect, Eric Derell Smith, 30, died in an exchange of gunfire with law enforcement after a police pursuit that began near the Louisiana/Mississippi state line around 2:52 p.m. on Monday, May 3.

The Biloxi TV station also reported the baby was injured in that same exchange of gunfire and taken to USA Children’s Hospital in Mobile, Ala. where the baby later passed away.

Officials identified the baby as La’Mello Parker, who was born on Jan. 23, and Smith was the baby’s biological father. Authorities say Smith allegedly shot and killed his ex-girlfriend, Christin Parker, 32, who was also the baby’s biological mother at her Baker area home on Monday.

“The juvenile did receive injuries and was taken to a local medical facility for treatment. Despite the efforts of medical staff, the child passed away as a result of the injuries sustained. As stated, the investigation is ongoing at this time. Once a thorough investigation is completed the details will be released to the District Attorney’s Office for review,” the Biloxi Police Department said in a statement on Tuesday, May 4.

The Harrison County Coroner confirmed the suspect died from multiple gunshot wounds. The shooting was one mile west of the Woolmarket exit on I-10 east in Harrison County, Miss. Smith was in the driver’s seat. The coroner added it was not a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The coroner told WLOX News as soon as the gunbattle ended on Monday afternoon, U.S. Marshals dashed in, grabbed the child, and rushed the baby to the hospital. The child was shot but was crying and in stable condition when he was moved from Merit Health in Biloxi, Miss. to USA Children’s Hospital in Mobile, Ala.

The child later passed away from the injuries suffered Monday afternoon, police say.

Smith allegedly fatally shot his ex-girlfriend, Christin Parker, 32, and her nephew, Brandon Parker, 26, on the morning of Monday, May 3, in an unincorporated area of East Baton Rouge Parish near Baker, La., according to the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office. Officials also said Smith kidnapped a four-month-old baby from the scene before heading to Mississippi.

Many wanted to know why an Amber Alert was not issued by Louisiana State Police.

“Prior to the issuance of an Amber Alert, the suspect and child were located by investigators and patrol personnel actively looking for the vehicle. Mississippi authorities will be handling any investigation on actions that occurred in Mississippi and EBR will be able to speak on the investigation in Louisiana,” said Tpr. Nick Manale with LSP.

TFC Taylor Scrantz, a spokesman for Louisiana State Police, told WAFB Smith had been spotted in Mississippi late Monday afternoon.

EBRSO deputies said they responded to the 2000 block of Richmond Avenue after a 911 caller hung up around 11:30 a.m. Monday. Investigators said Smith entered the home on Richmond Avenue and fatally shot his ex-girlfriend and her nephew. They added they believe the shooting occurred during a domestic dispute and then Smith drove off in a blue Nissan Altima with dark tinted windows.

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