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Published On: Wed, Dec 2nd, 2015

Gun control didn’t stop Moe Allen, Louisiana Bunny Friend Park shooter, part of ‘catch and release’

Police have identified Joseph “Moe” Allen as the first suspect named in connection with the mass shooting that wounded 17 people at Bunny Friend Park. Allen was arrested, according to court documents obtained Monday and will face 17 counts of attempted first-degree murder.

“Detective Cockerham located a witness to this incident who supplied the detective with a name and a nickname of one of the many shooters that were involved in this mass shooting,” the warrant request said. “During the photographic lineup process, the witness positively identified Mr. Joseph “Moe” Allen as the subject that was observed walking into Bunny Friend Playground and firing a semi-automatic handgun into the crowd, which resulted in 17 people being injured.”

Allen, 32, is a convicted felon with a rap sheet dating from 2002, which includes home invasion, carjacking, illegal carrying of weapon and possession of cocaine and heroin. He was on the street as part of the recent catch and release program.

"Moe" Allen

“Moe” Allen

New Orleans police said Allen was the first of several suspected gunmen identified from two rival gangs who opened fire on each other despite hundreds of people gathered in the park around 6:15 p.m. on Nov. 22. Authorities said the large crowd had gathered for a music video shoot in the park.

No one there had sent videos to police, Mayor Mitch Landrieu said. “And everyone knows there are lots,” he said.

“We need videos. We need photos. We need people to come forward,” police Superintendent Michael Harrison said.

“This is just the first shoe to drop,” Landrieu said. “We are going to do everything we can to make sure all the other shoes drop as well.”

Allen turned himself in Saturday and made his first appearance in Orleans Parish Magistrate Court on Sunday, when his bond was set at $1.7 million. He was scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Dec. 8, on the request of his private attorney Kevin Boshea.

Kenner Boss posted a video on Facebook that shows the scene at Bunny Friend Park in the Upper 9th Ward earlier that evening, he said — young people dancing to a DJ with their friends.

Ten of the 17 victims were under 21, police chief Michael Harrison said; the youngest was 10. He said the shooting appears to be gang-related.

Darlene Cusanza, president and CEO of Crimestoppers Greater New Orleans, said the organization is increasing its reward to $5,000.

“We are not getting as many calls as I would like to see,” Cusanza said, noting her frustration, given there were hundreds of witnesses.

Police need the help from those who were there so they can do their jobs and “take back the community,” Landrieu said. “There were over 400 to 500 people out there last night. (That’s) a lot of cameras, a lot of cell phones … it’s out there.”

 

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About the Author

- Catherine "Kaye" Wonderhouse, a proud descendant of the Wunderhaus family is the Colorado Correspondent who will add more coverage, interviews and reports from this midwest area.

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