2 Mardi Gras season visitors killed in separate shootings

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Stray bullets in separate shootings killed two people visiting New Orleans for pre-Mardi Gras festivities: a 15-year-old girl from Texas and a 33-year-old man from South Carolina.

Heaven Nettles, of Houston, was queuing outside a food truck blocks from a parade route on Saturday when gunfire killed her and two men also standing in the queue, it said local information.

The family comes every year “to visit family, friends and enjoy the carnival,” her aunt Donna Nettles from New Orleans told WVUE-TV. “Except (this time) heaven is dead.”

The coroner’s office identified the two men killed with Nettles as 39-year-old Donald Roberts Jr. and Marvin Pepp. Coroner’s spokesman Jason Melancon said he could not verify the hometowns of any of the three.

The coroner’s office has not released the name or home condition of the man killed in a shooting Friday night. But relatives identified him as Brandon Bovain of Orangeburg, South Carolina, The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reported.

Detectives told the family that Bouvain was in his vehicle in a hotel parking lot when people in two other vehicles began shooting at each other, Anthony Brown, one of Bovain’s brothers, said. addressing the newspaper.

“Brandon was one of the happiest people you’ll ever meet, and they took my heart — man, they took my world,” he said.

In total, there were three shootings Friday in New Orleans, two Saturday, another Monday and one early Wednesday, authorities said. None of the others were fatal.

Investigators do not believe the Texas teenager or the South Carolina man were intended victims in the fatal shooting, police said in emails Wednesday to The Associated Press.

Bovain, a furniture delivery man, his girlfriend and one of his younger brothers had made the impulsive decision to see Carnival, said another brother, James Bovain. He told the newspaper that the three were apparently checking into their hotel at the time.

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