Clerk shot in Bogalusa robbery dies; charges upgraded to first-degree murder

Murder charges have been added for three suspects in the armed robbery that occurred on December 28, 2018, at Bogalusa-area convenience store where a store clerk was shot. The clerk, Abdulraham Alaquir Taleb, 53, of Bogalusa, died at University Medical Center in New Orleans on Sunday, and the three suspects who were returned to Washington Parish on Friday (Jan. 4) will now be booked with first-degree murder, Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office authorities have announced..

The three suspects who were captured in Alabama will be booked with the murder charge and armed robbery are pictured above (L-R): Lance Hunter Rouse, 24, of Picayune, MS; Levi Austin Lee, 17, of Carriere, MS; and Melissa Michelle Smith, 29, of Tylertown, MS.

Authorities said video evidence from the store showed Taleb outside the business doing his daily routine when two armed suspects pulled up to the store and got out of a vehicle carrying shotguns and confronted Taleb when an altercation occurred, and Taleb was shot with a shotgun blast according to the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office..

The suspects walked past the wounded Taleb, went into the store, and took cash and merchandise from the store before fleeing the scene, according to the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office.

The three were captured in Montgomery County, Alabama, on Interstate 65 south of Montgomery after a local deputy spotted the car driven by the suspects. Spiked barriers were used to stop the suspects vehicle and allow for their capture during a high speed chase. (Previous coverage of this story)


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