ST. MARY PARISH, La. (KPEL News) - A St. Mary Parish jury has convicted a New Iberia teenager for shooting to death an LSU student at a party in Iberia Parish while he was on the run from a juvenile facility in Baton Rouge.

The story begins on October 17, 2020, when Jayden Vongchanh escaped from the facility, something his mother expressed frustration about in this WAFB article during which she said was too easy for him to do and that the search efforts were lacking:

“Yeah, I feel like he’s a missing minor and he’s not actively being searched for. So it’s just been like a really big runaround and nobody’s really looking so I’ve been putting up flyers all over and his dad has been putting up flyers and posting on Facebook trying to get it on the news just to get his face out there at least.”

Fast forward to December 13th of that same year, Vongchanh - who had been on the run for almost 60 days - and his friends went to the party and were told to leave the property in the 3100 block of Sugar Mill Road when they became disruptive. According to 16th Judicial District Attorney Bo Duhé,  Vongchanh pulled out a gun and shot the LSU student - 19-year-old Liam McDuff - as Vongchanh's group was getting in their car to leave. Then, Vongchanh boasted about the shooting on social media.

As our news partners at KATC reported, Vongchanh was arrested and charged with Murder and Richard Perez was arrested and charged with Accessory After the Fact Second Degree Murder and Contributing to the Delinquency of a Juvenile. After the jury deadlocked in Iberia Parish, it was transferred to St. Mary Parish where the jury unanimously convicted Vongchanh of manslaughter one week ago. Despite being only 15 years old at the time of the killing, Vongchanh was tried as an adult.

Sentencing is set for September 7, 2023. Manslaughter carries a prison sentence of up to 40 years.

Assistant District Attorneys Cynthia Spadoni and Ashley Hammons prosecuted the
case with assistance from Brady Holtzclaw.

The Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office investigated, with assistance from multiple other
agencies including the Attorney General’s Office, Louisiana State Police, and the New Iberia Police Department.

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