Bobby Charles Byrd, 39, is pulled from the Red River in July 2011.
Bobby Charles Byrd, 39 (Source: Caddo Correctional Center)
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -
Bobby Byrd was convicted on Wednesday for aggravated flight from an officer after a lengthy and dangerous high speed chase, back in 2011. The pursuit ended with officers having to forcefully remove Byrd from the Red River. Because of his past run-ins with the law the Caddo Parish District Attorney's Office wants to put Byrd away for a long time.
"They're trying to give him a life sentence on something that would have ordinarily carried a two year sentence," said Martha Hays, Byrd's Mother.
The chase started when officers spotted Byrd's vehicle, which matched the description of a vehicle used in a string of nightclub robberies. Byrd's family says he never robbed anyone but because of a condition he has he chose to run.
"Bobby is what you call a paranoid schizophrenic, bad. He gets scared and if he sees something that don't look right he runs," said Hays.
Bobby Byrd's family says he does deserve some time behind bars for running from police but they feel his crime does not merit life in prison. The final decision on sentencing will be handed down by Judge Emanuel; however family members say they are appealing to a higher judge.
"The only person I know to call on is God. I am asking this community, more than ever, to come through and just lift us up in prayer," said Mary Boyd.
Family members tell KSLA News 12 that Byrd is suing the city of Shreveport for the injuries he sustained while being pulled from the Red River. Byrd will be back in court on Monday, January 28.