Michael Shorts indicted for murder, obstruction in Broadmoor shooting death
August 27, 2020
For Immediate Release

Contact: Ken Daley, Public Information

District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office on Thursday (Aug. 27) secured a murder indictment against a New Orleans man accused of a fatal shooting in Broadmoor seven months ago.

Michael Shorts was charged with the second-degree murder of 40-year-old Emmanuel Varnado, and with obstructing justice in a homicide investigation, in the two-count indictment handed up by an Orleans Parish grand jury.

Shorts, 26, faces a mandatory lifetime prison sentence if found guilty of the murder charge, and up to 40 years if convicted on the obstruction count.

New Orleans police used witness testimony and DNA evidence recovered near the crime scene to develop Shorts as the suspected gunman in the fatal shooting. Varnado was shot multiple times in the 1900 block of South Rendon Street just after 3 p.m. on Jan. 27, 2020. He was pronounced dead shortly after being taken to a hospital.

Detectives spoke with Shorts the next day, and obtained a buccal swab of the defendant through a search warrant on Jan. 30. After the DNA comparison was confirmed, NOPD investigators obtained an arrest warrant for Shorts on June 2. The suspect surrendered to police June 30.

Orleans Parish Magistrate Commissioner Robert Blackburn set the murder suspect’s bond at $375,000 on July 1. Shorts posted a property bond for the amount and was free from custody when indicted Thursday.

Assistant District Attorney Sarah Dawkins presented the case to the grand jury.