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Shoppers of Gardere strip mall nervous of returning after 3 people were shot at laundromat Friday

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BATON ROUGE - Three people were shot after a couple went to a laundromat to confront a woman over a fight that happened days earlier at the same shopping center.

The East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office said the suspects walked into Gardere Coin Laundry around 4 p.m. Friday, both carrying a weapon. The man—identified as Rontrell Nelson—was carrying a rifle, and his girlfriend was armed with a tire iron, deputies learned after reviewing surveillance video from outside the business.

A witness at the laundromat said the pair confronted another woman inside, with Nelson's girlfriend swinging a tire iron at the victim's head. During the fight inside the business, Nelson allegedly fired several shots from his rifle, hitting a bystander.

Cameras outside the laundromat showed the victim running out the door with a gun in hand, firing back toward her attackers. Nelson was then seen walking outside and firing his rifle at the woman, who fell to the ground.

Both Nelson and his girlfriend—who was shot in the exchange—were seen fleeing the shopping center in their vehicle, which was later stopped by responding deputies.

Saturday, customers of the strip mall where Gardere Coin Laundry is located were apprehensive to bring their business back to the area.

"I don't want to catch a bullet going in the store or washing clothes," Chasity Morris said.

"It's just hard for people to try to live safely when they can't come outside the house because somebody is getting shot " Jmory Dixon said,

Nelson told investigators the victim had "snuck" his girlfriend in the parking lot of the same shopping center two days earlier.

Nelson was booked Friday evening on charges of attempted second-degree murder and felon in possession of a firearm.

All three people shot in the confrontation were taken to a hospital and are expected to survive.

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