Manslaughter charge in death of nurse hit by stray bullet

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A 37-year-old man has been charged with manslaughter, accused of fatally shooting a woman bystander on Bourbon Street while fighting for a security guard’s weapon.

Police had arrested Louis Barnes on a second-degree murder charge after the shooting Feb. 24. However, the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office said in a statement Monday that prosecutors found murder could not be proved beyond reasonable doubt and brought the lesser charge instead.

Friday’s bill of information also charged Barnes with attempted second-degree murder and a firearms violation. Barnes’ bond is set at $1.5 million.

The statement says 36-year-old nurse Julie Couvillon (KOO-vee-yanh) was hit in the neck by a stray bullet as the guard tried to eject Barnes from a restaurant.

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Barnes’ public defender said he could not comment.

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