Girl Shot in the Back of the Head After Playing on Neighbors Property

On May 7, 2023, tragedy hit the small community of Starks, Louisiana, as a 14-year-old girl was shot while playing hide-and-seek on a neighbor’s property.

According to the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office, the teen was shot in the back of her head, taken to a hospital, and treated for non-life-threatening injuries. The alleged shooter, 58-year-old David Doyle, was taken to the Calcasieu Correctional Center, charged with aggravated battery, four counts of aggravated assault with a firearm, and illegal firearm discharge.

The incident occurred on Jimmy Doyle Road, which is home to only three families. Doyle stated that he had seen some shadows outside his home, and thus, he had gone inside to get his firearm before returning to the outside and shooting at what he assumed were people running away from his property.

Due to the state’s “stand your ground” law, David Doyle could potentially use the law to his advantage as a defense in this case. The law states that a homicide is justifiable “when committed by a person lawfully inside a dwelling, a place of business, or a motor vehicle … when the conflict began, against a person who is attempting to make an unlawful entry into the dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle, or who has made an unlawful entry into the dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle, and the person committing the homicide reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the entry or to compel the intruder to leave the dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle.”

The case is heartbreaking for the tight-knit community, which is now torn and in shock over the incident that left a young girl injured. The future of this case is uncertain, but its profound impact on the town of Starks is now all too clear.