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Police searching for woman connected to robbery, hostage situation

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ADDIS - Authorities identified the suspect killed during a hostage standoff last night, and said one other person connected to the case is still on the loose.

Col. Richie Johnson with the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office said police shot and killed Ray Charles Hayes, 50, as he threatened to kill his hostage.

This happened after investigators said Hayes stole an Addis Police unit after a thwarted robbery, and led law enforcement on a chase before wrecking near the Intracoastal Canal.

Johnson said it all started last night when a witness saw a masked man go into Noah's Pharmacy in Brusly. They called 911, and police from Addis and Brusly surrounded the store.

Investigators found a woman believed to be Hayes' getaway driver in a back alley. While they were questioning her, police said Hayes came out of the store and saw the police. He ducked back into the store, took a customer hostage, then used the hostage to steal an Addis Police cruiser.

Johnson said police pursued the stolen vehicle before it lost control and flipped near the Intracoastal Canal. He said Hayes had forced his hostage to drive, and threatened to kill them.

Johnson said negotiators spoke to Hayes for about ten minutes before he said he was going to count down, then shoot everyone. When he got to "2", Johnson said an officer shot Hayes in the chest.

Investigators are still searching for the woman suspected of being the original getaway driver, who slipped away from the scene during the chaos. She was driving a black Pontiac Firebird.

State Police are investigating the shooting and chase, while the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office are investigating the initial robbery. Johnson said Hayes may have been responsible for a robbery at another pharmacy in Port Allen two weeks ago.

Anyone with information about her location or this case should contact the authorities.


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