Troopers Make Arrest in Hit and Run Crash Kills Motorcyclist in St. John the Baptist Parish

Published 5:33 pm Friday, April 23, 2021

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UPDATE: As part of an on-going investigation into the hit and run crash which occurred on February 14, 2021, Investigating Troopers secured an arrest warrant for 33-year-old Rayonchez R. Stewart of Laplace. Through an in depth investigation, Stewart was identified as the driver of the vehicle that struck and killed Gerard Milton on the night in question. Stewart surrendered himself to deputies at the St John Sheriff’s Office lock-up and was booked on charges of Negligent Homicide, Felony Hit and Run, Aggravated Obstruction of a Highway, Reckless Operation of a Motor Vehicle, Suspended Driver’s License and No Seatbelt.

UPDATE: The decedent has been identified as 48-year-old Gerard C. Milton of Laplace

Reserve – Last night, at approximately 3:20 am, Troopers with Louisiana State Police Troop B began investigating a hit and run fatality crash involving a motorcyclist on US 61 northbound near the intersection of East 22nd Street in St. John the Baptist Parish. Identification of the motorcyclist is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

The preliminary investigation revealed the deceased was traveling northbound on US 61 near East 22nd Street on a 2008 Yamaha motorcycle. At the same time, a 2016 Nissan Altima was also traveling northbound on US 61 in the right lane at a high rate of speed. For reasons still under investigation, the Nissan Altima struck the rear of the motorcycle causing the motorcyclist to be ejected. The motorcyclist sustained severe injuries and was pronounced deceased on scene. The motorcyclist was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. The unknown driver of the Nissan abandoned the vehicle and fled the scene. Although speed is a suspected factor in the crash on part of the driver of the Altima, toxicology test will be performed following an autopsy. Troopers are actively following leads pertaining to the driver of the Altima and we do urge anyone with any additional information to please contact Louisiana State Police Troop B at 504-471-2775. The investigation into this crash is active and on-going. No additional information is available at this time.

Troopers urge drivers to always be aware of motorcyclists around them, and likewise, urge motorcyclists to engage in safe riding practices when on our roadways. Motorcyclists should practice safe and responsible operator behavior such as obeying speed limits, wearing a helmet, and never operating their motorcycle under any form of impairment. If motorists witness hazardous situations or possible impaired drivers, they may dial *LSP (*577) to be connected to the nearest Troop to report that activity.