On Friday, May 15, 2015 members of the Gretna Police Department responded to an Armed Robbery of a business in the 500 block of Lafayette Street. During the investigation it was learned two suspects entered the business armed with two semi-automatic handguns.
The suspects stole numerous types of pharmaceutical drugs and four hundred dollars in US currency. The suspects made good their escape in a 2009 Silver Ford Mustang.
Photographs of the person of interest were supplied to local news media. This lead to numerous calls identifying the suspect. Some calls were received from Louisiana State Correctional Facilities from inmates that served time with the person of interest.
Further investigation revealed the identity of the person of interest as one Royal Stevens, black male with a date of birth of January 28, 1977.
Investigators were able to locate the suspects’ vehicle and conducted round the clock surveillance. During surveillance investigators learned his place of residence, which was located in New Orleans, Louisiana. Investigator were able to secure a search warrant for his residence and two additional locations that had been identified as locations the suspect had ties to.
The search warrants were executed on May 26, 2015 with the assistance of the New Orleans Police Department Special Response Team, Gretna Police Criminal Investigations Division and the Westbank Major Crime Task Force. These searches revealed thousands of dosage units of pharmaceutical drugs, consistent with that which was taken during the course of the armed robbery. Clothing and additional evidence was seized.
Royal Stevens was booked at the Jefferson Parish Correctional Center with Armed Robbery with a Firearm. Mr. Stevens has previous armed robbery arrest and convictions in New Orleans, resulting in a thirty-five (35) year sentence of which he served nineteen (19) years and is currently on parole for fourteen (14) years.
The investigation is ongoing and investigators are attempting to identify the second suspect thru evidence obtained via the search warrants and surveillance.
Anthony H. Christiana Jr.
Deputy Chief of Police