Arabi man wounded by falling bullet while watching fireworks

St. Bernard Sheriff’s Office

An Arabi man was wounded by a falling bullet while watching fireworks in front of his door at midnight on New Year’s Eve but is out of a hospital after surgery to remove the projectile, Sheriff James Pohlmann said.

The 54-year-old victim, whose name wasn’t released, had just stepped outside his home in the 1800 block of Schnell Drive with his wife to watch neighborhood fireworks at midnight on New Year’s Eve when he felt pain in the lower torso, the sheriff said.

When he went inside to examine what hit him he was bleeding heavily and his wife drove him to St. Bernard Parish Hospital.

An X-ray revealed a projectile lodged in him and he was transferred to University Hospital in New Orleans for surgery, where a bullet was removed, the sheriff said.

There are no suspects in the shooting but anyone with information on the shooter should call the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office at (504) 271-2501 or Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111.

“Law enforcement has repeatedly stressed the danger of shooting weapons in the air to celebrate the New Year,’’ Sheriff James Pohlmann said. “Here is proof of what can happen – a man wounded while standing outside his door. This could have been a fatality we are talking about and I hope people learn something from this.’’

There were reports of at least one person seen shooting a handgun in Arabi at midnight New Year’s Eve and three casings were recovered in a lot in the 1800 block of Center Street, Sheriff Pohlmann said. But they didn’t match the caliber of the bullet recovered from the victim, he said.