Man accused of trying to murder police at Highland Road apartment has his charges reduced
BATON ROUGE - Charges have been reduced for the man accused of cocking a gun and pointing it at police officers who were responding to a call at a Highland Road apartment complex last year.
That encounter was captured on body camera video and released to the public this summer. Two officers showed up at the Hub apartments for a call involving a suspicious person. During that call, gunshots were heard on their body cameras. That's when they went to where the shots were being fired and had a gun pointed at them, with the suspect refusing to comply.
Officers fired shots back at Malik Chavis, and he was hit in the shoulder and the hand. He was originally charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder on a police officer, possession of a firearm by a felon and illegal use of weapons.
However, the district attorney's office billed Chavis with only a single charge one month after the incident. District Attorney Hillar Moore said that was done to keep him locked up. Chavis is charged with illegal use of a weapon.
Moore said Friday that his office had reviewed the body camera video, and would be adding additional felony charges of aggravated assault with a firearm against a law enforcement officer. That carries up to one to 10 years in prison if convicted. After his office reviewed the video, Moore said aggravated assault more appropriately fits the incident on tape.
The original charge would have carried up to 50 years if convicted.
Residents in the area vividly remember the situation last year. They don't think it's right that charges are being reduced for a man who interrupted their peace.
"That's not right," one concerned resident said. "The cops are around here, to protect all of us around here....to reduce the charges for someone who pulled a gun on a cop is just wrong."
Chavis is due back in court next month, when additional charges will be added.
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