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A Man Suspected Of Fatally Shooting Five People In Louisiana Was Arrested After A Manhunt

Authorities announced there was a search for Dakota Theriot, 21, a day earlier.

Last updated on January 28, 2019, at 5:59 a.m. ET

Posted on January 27, 2019, at 10:39 a.m. ET

Livingston Parish Sheriff

Authorities on Sunday arrested Dakota Theriot, 21, a suspect in a shooting spree that left five people dead in Louisiana — including his parents and three members of another family.

Theriot was found in Richmond County, Virginia, on Sunday morning, according to the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office, and was booked by that agency.

Investigators were on the lookout for Theriot in Virginia, believing him to have family ties to Richmond County. A family member there requested authorities search a residence.

"While Deputies were on site, Theriot arrived at the residence in a motor vehicle with a firearm pointed out of the window,” officials said. “The Deputies sought cover and challenged Theriot, who then dropped the firearm upon their commands and was taken into custody without incident.”

Louisiana authorities announced a search for Theriot a day earlier, related to shooting events in two parishes that they described as a “domestic incident.”

Officers responding Saturday to a call about a shooting at a trailer in Gonzales, Ascension Parish, found Elizabeth and Keith Theriot with gunshot wounds, Sheriff Bobby Webre told reporters Saturday.

One of the victims told officers that they were shot by their son. Both died at a hospital from their injuries.

In neighboring Livingston Parish, authorities reported the deaths of three individuals, Billy Ernest, 43, Summer Ernest, 20, and Tanner Ernest, 17.

Webre said on Saturday that one of the Ernest victims could have been in a “boyfriend/girlfriend” relationship with Dakota Theriot.

“This is probably, I would say, one of the worst domestic violence incidents I have seen in quite a while,” Webre said.


The victims in Livingston Parish were from the Ernest family. The Sheriff's Office there originally told media the family's name was spelled Earnest.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.