Holden, Louisiana – 50 year old self-employed mechanic Dennis W. Carter, Sr. and his estranged wife, 49 year old Donna Carter have been having problems for quite some time. Problems serious enough for her to take out a protective order against her husband. At one point recently Carter had attempted to attack his wife with a machete and on several occasions their son, 26 year old Dennis W. Carter, Jr. had to physically intervene in order to protect his mother. He has been arrested three times this year in Livingston Parish, with three charges of violation of a protective order and one charge of domestic assault. The abuse, both mentally and physically, just kept escalating until it culminated in the final act around 10:30 Saturday night.
Carter had been living in Hammond, La (northwest of New Orleans) since their separation but he apparently made the approximately 15-20 mile trip out S.R. 190 to Holden yesterday in order to end the violence once and for all.
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Dennis Carter, Sr. at some point decided in his twisted mind that things would be better off with he and his family dead than alive and apart. Carter must have been severely depressed, how else to explain the twisted logic that drove him to kill the ones he loved?
At approximately 10:30 P.M. on Saturday Carter entered the home in Holden and the shooting started. Donna Carter and Dennis Carter, Jr. were at home along with Dennis Jr’s wife, Amber Carter and their two-year-old son. Another child, 16-months, was also at the home and miraculously survived unscathed. The rest of the family weren’t so lucky. Donna and Dennis Jr. were both killed in the shooting. Amber, six months pregnant, jumped out of the second story along with Masson, her two year old son. Police aren’t sure yet if Amber and Masson were shot inside the house or if Carter followed them outside but either way the results are the same. Masson was also shot to death and Amber Carter is in the hospital in critical condition with bullet wounds to her kidney and liver along with spinal cord damage caused by the fall. She and Dennis Jr. had been planning on moving out of the house relatively soon.
Doctors performed an emergency C-Section this morning in order to save the baby boy, named Aubrey. Reports state that he was born three months early but is healthy. Originally Amber was in a hospital in Baton Rouge but she has been transferred to New Orleans. I have no idea what her condition is or where the baby is right now. I’ll try and update the post when I have more information.
Neighbors heard the shots and dialed 911. After the shooting Dennis Carter, Sr. hopped in his car and took off. The same neighbor who called the police reported having seen Carter Sr. leaving the house with a gun and getting into his El Camino. Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Deputies spotted him about 20 minutes later but when he pulled off the exit he killed himself in plain view of law enforcement. State ballistics experts are conducting tests on the gun found in the car to see if it is the same used in the murders.
Amber’s most recent MySpace update was back in July and she was very happy. She posted “Amber is having a baby girl!”. According to the AP reports I read they said she had delivered a baby boy so either they are mistaken (Aubrey is a girl’s name generally) or the doctor was mistaken at her last sonogram. Either way I hope she makes it and the baby is OK. I have had it confirmed both in the comments as well as online that she did have a healthy baby girl just as her MySpace stated.
Update – Reports from several media sources are stating that prior to going over and killing most of his family Dennis Carter made a threatening phone call (via voicemail) on his other son Devin’s line on Friday. Devin called the police and deputies told him he would have to file charges with a justice of the peace in order to proceed with an arrest.