Dakota Theriot

Dakota Theriot 

LIVINGSTON – The man charged with five counts of first-degree murder after a two-parish shooting spree in January has been moved from the Livingston Parish Detention Center.

Dakota Theriot is now in custody at Angola State Penitentiary, according to the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office.

The Louisiana Department of Corrections reached out to LPSO to put Theriot under its custody, Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard told The News in a phone conversation on the evening of March 6.

The safety of deputies, other inmates, and Theriot himself played a role in the DOC’s offer, Ard said.

“He’s obviously a dangerous man, so that was the safest thing for us to do,” he said. “We have a safe facility, but most of our offenders are not high-profile, and Angola houses those types of individuals.”

Theriot, 21, faces three counts of first-degree murder in Livingston Parish and another two counts in Ascension.

He allegedly shot Billy Ernest, 43, daughter Summer Ernest, 20, and son Tanner Ernest, 17, on the morning of Jan. 26 at the mobile home along Courtney Road near Walker. He had been living with the Ernest family for several weeks.

Theriot then drove to Gonzales, where he allegedly killed his parents, Keith and Elizabeth Theriot, both 50.

Dakota Theriot is believed to have killed all five with use of a firearm he allegedly stole from his father.

Deputies in Richmond County, Va., arrested Theriot less than 24 hours after the shooting. Theriot used a truck belonging to Billy Ernest to drive to the rural town of Warsaw, Va., where deputies arrested him upon his arrival at his grandmother’s home.

He waived extradition and was flown back to Louisiana on Feb. 1.

Arraignment in 21st Judicial District Court is set for March 18, District Attorney Scott M. Perrilloux said.

Neither Perrilloux nor 23rd Judicial District Attorney Ricky Babin have said whether they will seek the death penalty for Theriot.

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