Iberia

Sep 6, 2011 7:05 PM by MIKE MAGNOLI

New Iberia, 18 year old woman shot to death: Sheriff's Office Suspects Accident

An 18 year old girl dies in what the Iberia Parish Sheriff's office believes is an accidental shooting.

It happened at a home off Curtis Lee Road, but it's affecting the whole community in New Iberia.

...

"She was laughing and running around with a bunch of the girls Friday night, she went to school with a bunch of them and they all were friends."

Those words coming from bartender, co-worker, and friend TJ Derouren. She tells of a hardworking student who was shy at first but learned quickly the ins and outs as a waitress and she put her customers first: 18 year old Mandi Viator- dead from a gunshot wound. The Sheriff's Office suspects it was an accident while her fiance was handling the weapon.

TJ Deouren tells us, "She was really looking forward to spending their life together and she talked about him a lot and loved him-- we're hearing it was the fiance but we're hearing like you're hearing, it was an accident, how could this happen?"


The shooting happened at a camp ground five minutes from the restaurant. Mandi and the fiance lived together in a camper.


No charges have been filed yet.

Family members say the fiance told them he was moving a gun in the couple's camper when it fired- the bullet said to have gone through a wall, a dresser, and a shower curtain before striking Mandi. Paramedics arrived quickly but doctors couldn't revive the 18 year old woman.


The Sheriff's Office says any charges for negligence or illegal use of a firearm will come from the DA's office after a full review.

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