Louisiana State Trooper Steven Vincent, a 13-year veteran of the force, died Monday from injuries he suffered when he was shot in the head Sunday afternoon. Police video show Vincent, 43, was shot while trying to talk to a man whose pickup truck had run into a ditch. The trooper had arrived on scene at 2:43 p.m., when the suspect exited the vehicle shortly after with a sawed-off shotgun.
“I am very saddened to report that Senior Trooper Steven Vincent has passed away this morning from the gunshot wounds he suffered yesterday in conjunction with a traffic investigation,” Colonel Michael D. Edmonson said in a statement. “As an organization, we are heartbroken over this senseless and tragic death. Our thoughts and prayers are with his surviving wife Katherine and his son Ethan as well as his entire extended family.”
The video shows the man, identified as Kevin Daigle, 54, of Lake Charles, hit Vincent with at least two or three buckshot rounds, inflicting major damage. Immediately after the shooting, Daigle wandered into the road and over to Trooper Vincent, asking if he was alive. “You could hear him breathing, telling him, `You’re lucky. You’re lucky — you’re going to die soon.’ That’s the words that came out of his mouth,” Edmonson said.
He said two or three drivers stopped immediately, one of them making a quick turnaround on the two-lane highway to rush to the trooper’s aide. That driver wrestled the shotgun away from Daigle, who had multiple DUIs, while the others got him to the ground and slapped Vincent’s handcuffs on his wrists. The good Samaritans were unhurt, according to Edmonson. Meanwhile, there has been an outpouring of support from within the community. The Seven Slot Society of Southwest Louisiana held a candlelight vigil for Trooper Vincent at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital on Sunday.
“Steven was proud to serve as a Louisiana State Trooper and we were proud to count him among our ranks,” Edmonson said. “This loss exacts an enormous emotional toll on the State Police family, but we will do what is necessary and proper to honor Steven and support those who knew and loved him. He will be missed but never forgotten.”
Edmonson said Vincent had a wife and a 9-year-old son, and that one of Vincent’s brothers is also a state trooper, while yet another is a police chief in the nearby town of Iowa. The department is requesting prayers in support of the family on Facebook, which has been shared and liked over 10,000 times as of the writing of this article.
“His family lives and breathes law enforcement.”