Investigation into car burglaries leads to standoff ending in teenager's suicide
GONZALES - Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies say a Gonzales teen tragically took his own life while a St. Amant teen was arrested following an ongoing burglary investigation conducted by sheriff’s deputies in Ascension and Livingston parishes.
Investigators said the incident happened shortly before midnight when deputies went to a home on Wallace Acres Road in search of 19-year-old Caine Miller, who was wanted by law enforcement in Livingston in connection with several vehicle burglaries where numerous weapons, money and electronics were stolen. Miller was also a suspect in a series of vehicle burglaries in Ascension Parish.
Deputies said when they arrived at the Wallace Acres home, they met with the homeowner who didn’t even know the teenager was in his residence at the time. Investigators said they immediately found evidence that indicated someone had recently climbed in through the bedroom window.
As law enforcement continued to search the Wallace Acres scene, they learned that a 15-year-old from Ascension Parish was with Miller in the bedroom. Juvenile investigators from Ascension Parish had been searching for the runaway 15-year-old for the past week. Authorities had also developed the 15-year-old as a suspect early on in the same burglary investigation in which Miller was a suspect. They were in the process of obtaining arrest warrants on him in connection with vehicle burglaries in Livingston Parish.
Deputies said they heard a single gunshot come from the bedroom as they entered the residence, and they were forced to retreat to the outside of the house to bring the homeowner and his family to safety. Caine and the 15-year-old runaway were asked via PA system to surrender to deputies, but they failed to comply after several hours of negotiation. After the standoff ended, investigators learned that the single gunshot they heard was the sound of Miller taking his own life.
At about 3 a.m., the 15-year-old surrendered to authorities and was arrested as a runaway. He was taken to the Assumption Youth Detention Center and will be taken to Livingston Parish to face charges in that jurisdiction in the next few days, according to deputies in Livingston. Records indicate the 15-year-old has been arrested for running away from home before. The 15-year-old confirmed to deputies that Miller had in fact shot himself.
The Ascension Parish Crisis Response team was activated to clear the Wallace Acres home of any further threats, and they located Miller’s body in the bedroom closet with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead on the scene, according to Sheriff Jeff Wiley of APSO. The weapon Miller used to take his own life was reported stolen from a vehicle in Ascension Parish.
Miller had an extensive criminal record dating back to juvenile crime history. As an adult, deputies said he was arrested a number of times on charges related to burglary, theft, contributing to delinquency of a juvenile and aggravated assault with a firearm.
The 15-year-old runaway has also been arrested several times with charges connected to theft, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, illegal possession of stolen things and armed robbery.
The sheriff also said the 15-year-old and Miller were acquaintances, and there are additional arrests expected as the investigation continues.
Anyone with information about the case is urged to contact the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office at (225) 621-4636.