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Two arrested for manslaughter following fatal 2015 shooting

LAPLACE — Two local men are facing reduced charges this week in a case that dates back two years.

Juan Joseph Alexander, 40, of LaPlace and Bryant Hayes Jr., 30, of Reserve were each charged Tuesday with manslaughter.

Juan Joseph Alexander

The duo had faced murder-related charges following their December 2015 arrests.

Bryant Hayes Jr.

“It was supposed to go to trial this week, and the D.A.’s office met with my investigators in court and they decided to book them with manslaughter,” St. John Parish Sheriff Mike Tregre said Friday before press time, adding he was unaware of the basis for the charge changes.

Authorities have released few details since the deadly shooting among “acquaintances” Dec. 12, 2015, left one Reserve man dead and another in the hospital.

Hayes turned himself into deputies three days after the shooting, when he was booked with attempted first-degree murder and illegal use of a weapon.

Alexander was booked two days after the shooting with attempted first-degree murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and illegal use of a weapon.

At the time, Sgt. Dane Clement said authorities were not releasing what roles the suspects played because the investigation was ongoing, adding the suspects and two victims were all acquaintances.

Demario Gray, 29, of Reserve died a day after the shooting on Dec. 13, 2015.

Detectives identified the second victim as a 30-year-old Reserve man.

St. John deputies first responded to the 1100 block of River Road in Reserve at 12:15 p.m. Dec. 12, 2015, following a gunshots report. Deputies located a man with a gunshot wound at the scene.

A second man with a gunshot wound arrived in a private vehicle at Ochsner Medical Complex-River Parishes emergency room in LaPlace.

Both shooting victims were eventually taken to a New Orleans-area hospital for treatment.