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Lafayette Crime Blotter for July 7

Arrests posted July 6, 2015, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. WALTER USE BARKLEY: 48, of the 100 block of Reid Street, Lafayette. He was booked on distribution or possession with intent to distribute Schedule II narcotics and prohibited activities (drug paraphernalia). JOSEPH P. BEARB: 68, of the 400 block of Pope… Continue reading →

Report: Alabama bar portrays Les Miles by way of Michael Jackson in ‘Thriller’ chalkboard mural

Druid City Brewing Company in Tuscaloosa has become well-known for their clever, mostly satirical chalkboard murals, according to a report by Well they’ve struck again, and this time LSU football coach Les Miles is targeted in a mural titled “Bayou Thriller.” The piece, which pays homage to the artwork on the album cover of… Continue reading →

Lamar takes flier on airport advertising firm

Baton Rouge-based outdoor advertising giant Lamar Advertising Co. has acquired Alliance Airport Advertising for an undisclosed sum. The deal adds advertising and displays in McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas; Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport; Salt Lake City International Airport; Portland (Oregon) International Airport; and Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, California. With the transaction, Lamar now operates… Continue reading →

BRAF, Commercial Properties plan move to IBM building downtown

The Baton Rouge Area Foundation and Commercial Properties Realty Trust are moving to the top floor of the new riverfront building in downtown that houses IBM. The move to the larger location – roughly twice the usable space of the current offices is set for November. The foundation and Commercial Properties, and their combined staff of nearly… Continue reading →

Lafayette-based Arc Group’s wings franchise opens new location

Lafayette-based ARC Group Inc. has opened its newest Dick’s Wings & Grill restaurant in Fleming Island, Florida. ARC Group is the owner, operator and franchisor of the Dick’s Wings & Grill. There are 15 Dick’s Wings in Florida and four in Georgia, as well as a concession stand at the Jacksonville Jaguars’ stadium, EverBank Field.… Continue reading →

e-Gov acquires sales tax assets of JPI Data

Baton Rouge-based e-Gov Systems, a cloud-based tax compliance company, has acquired the sales-and-use tax software assets of Gonzales-based JPI Data Resources. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. JPI sells software document and storage software, as well as sales tax and distribution systems. The company’s customers include hospitals, medical offices, billing firms and local governments.… Continue reading →

Day care center, allegedly a storefront for drug ring, had passed only one of seven state inspections since March 2013

The Emmanuel Child Development and Learning Center on Swan Ave. was used as a storefront for cocaine sales, according to a federal indictment.

After almost two years in business, Emmanuel Child Development and Learning Center in Baton Rouge abruptly closed Wednesday. A day later, it became clear why. At a news conference on Thursday, U.S. Attorney Walt Green announced the arrests of 38 people, describing them as part of a wide-ranging and violent drug ring and accusing… Continue reading →

After Cox says it won't air Miss USA pageant, viewers without Reelz left to explore other options

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- From right, Miss Arkansas USA Leah Blefko, Miss Georgia USA Brooke Fletcher, Miss Alaska USA Kimberly Agron, Miss Florida USA Ashleigh Lollie, Miss Connecticut USA Ashley Golebiewski, Miss Delaware USA Renee Bull, and Miss Idaho USA  Claira Hollingsworth arrive for dinner at Sullivan's Steakhouse, Monday, July 6, 2015, in Baton Rouge.

A small movement is afoot to persuade Cox Communications to air Sunday’s Miss USA pageant, but cable company representatives say they have no plans to broadcast the competition that NBC and Univision dropped last week. The Reelz channel — available to AT&T, DirectTV and Dish Network customers, but not on Cox — came to Miss… Continue reading →

Man and woman arrested, accused of cruelty to two juveniles

A Baton Rouge man and woman were arrested Sunday each on a count of child cruelty after an altercation in which they are accused of physically and verbally abusing two juveniles. Christine Powell, 31, reported to police that she had been assaulted by her 12-year-old niece, but when police arrived at her home, the girl… Continue reading →

Bayou Vermilion District scope to increase, with eyes toward further possible expansions in the future

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK --  Chris Holland, bayou operations specialist for the Bayou Vermilion District, picks up a bag of garbage found floating in the water Tuesday, June 30, 2015, on Bayou Carencro along the border between Lafayette Parish and St. Landry Parish.

Work crews with the Bayou Vermilion District are steering their boats up Bayou Carencro in an effort to expand the reach of the public agency. District crews have worked along Bayou Vermilion for years, clearing away downed trees, fighting erosion along the bayou’s banks and maintaining floating booms to capture litter in the waterway that flows… Continue reading →

Four booked on DWI in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison

Authorities arrested at least four people suspected of driving while intoxicated in East Baton Rouge Parish and booked them into Parish Prison between 2:30 p.m. Sunday and 2:30 p.m. Monday, booking records show. Those booked and the counts against them: Frank Denny, 20, 820 Henry Landry Ave., Metairie, first-offense DWI, maximum speed limit and reckless… Continue reading →

Lafayette crime blotter for July 6, 2015

Authorities are investigating how a Lafayette woman on Friday was shot dead by her estranged husband, who claimed the gun went off by accident while the pair handled the weapon. The shooting happened about 10:40 a.m. in the 600 block of Fenetre Road, the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office reported Monday. Neither the woman nor her… Continue reading →

St. Mary prosecutors charge three people in 455-count case accusing them of stealing up to $2 million

St. Mary Parish prosecutors have charged three south Louisiana residents with hundreds of counts of theft, racketeering and money laundering that allegedly netted them $1 million to $2 million in cash over 14 years. The defendants also are accused of stealing rare artwork — including two lithographs by Salvador Dali — from the prominent Guarisco family in… Continue reading →

David Thibodaux STEM Magnet Academy teacher to receive presidential award

Advocate file photo by BRYAN TUCK. -- David Thibodaux STEM Academy  teacher Lerri Cockrell works with her students during class in 2012 after being named the Louisiana Association of Teachers of Mathematics’ middle school math teacher of the year. Cockrell's recent honor is the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. She'll travel to Washington, D.C., to receive the award later this summer.

David Thibodaux STEM Magnet Academy teacher Lerri Cockrell will travel to Washington, D.C., later this summer to receive the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. An educator for 27 years, Cockrell has taught at Thibodaux since 2011. Cockrell is among 108 teachers selected this year for the award, which is one of the… Continue reading →

Missing Livingston Parish man found dead Monday in store parking lot

Kristopher Stevens was found dead in his vehicle July 6, in the parking lot of a Gonzales business, possibly of a drug overdose. Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office.

A 26-year-old man reported missing Sunday was found dead in his vehicle Monday morning, possibly from a drug overdose, Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley said. Deputies were called shortly before 8 a.m. Monday to the parking lot of the Lowe’s Home Improvement store on Airline Highway where they found Kristopher Stevens… Continue reading →

Murder case brought to a close with Monday plea

A Baker man on Monday admitted his involvement in the killing of an 18-year-old Baton Rouge man in Tigerland, closing the book on the 3-year-old murder case. Dedrick Marquel Brown, 27, pleaded guilty to accessory after the fact to second-degree murder in the slaying of Philip John Edward Rush Boudreaux and was given a suspended five-year… Continue reading →

Transformed new downtown Lafayette library opens after four years of renovations

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK --  City officials, library staff and other honorees pose for a ribbon-cutting during the Grand Re-opening of the Lafayette Public Library main branch Monday, July 6, 2015, in downtown Lafayette, La.

Closed for four years, the main library in downtown Lafayette reopened its doors Monday to wide-eyed adults and children who appreciated the $10.5 million transformation of the well-worn 1970s interior into a modern, open space. The reopening has been a much-anticipated event in the community, with the project involving laborious asbestos removal before… Continue reading →

Shooting death case involving St. Gabriel police chief’s son to go to Attorney General’s office

The Louisiana Attorney General’s Office has been asked to step in and take over the investigation, and possible prosecution, in the shooting deaths of two brothers who were killed on Mother’s Day in which the suspected shooter is the 25-year-old son of the St. Gabriel police chief. Angela Stewart, the mother of Dominique… Continue reading →

Trial participants needed and other Around Acadiana items for July 7, 2015

From left, Richard Burgess, Marsha Sills and Billy Gunn.

Can education affect patient outcomes? That’s what researchers with the Cancer Center of Acadiana at Lafayette General Medical Center will study in a clinical trial focusing on men and women, 18 and older, who have been diagnosed with colorectal cancer. The research will evaluate the impact of support and education offered by health care providers to certain… Continue reading →

State judge throws out lawsuit challenging count of St. George incorporation petition signatures

Advocate staff file photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING

In yet another setback for organizers hoping to create the proposed city of St. George, a state judge tossed a lawsuit filed by the city backers that argued the registrar of voters made substantive errors when he determined their petition was short the signatures needed to call an election. State District Judge Wilson… Continue reading →

'A great city has a great zoo': Study suggests bigger, more up-to-date Baton Rouge zoo, in a better location

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Reegan Wilkes, 6, of Cottonwood, Calif., watches as resident Sumatran tigers Seattle and Denver enjoy their habitat's water feature at BREC's Baton Rouge Zoo, Friday, June 3, 2015.

Seeking to boost attendance at BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo and the impact the zoo has on the region, park system officials are mulling over a $110 million upgrade that could include moving it to a different location. BREC officials caution that no decisions have been made yet and say they don’t plan on seeking a tax… Continue reading →

Gov. Bobby Jindal won't participate in Republican presidential forum in New Orleans

The National Right to Life convention in New Orleans this week will feature a Republican presidential candidate forum but Gov. Bobby Jindal is not among the participants.

Four presidential hopefuls are on the program for the 9-11:30 a.m. Friday event: Dr. Ben Carson of Maryland, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Pennsylvania U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum and U.S. Sen.… Continue reading →

Burglars break into gun store, steal firearms

Photo provided by Baton Rouge Police Department -- Masked burglars stole firearms early Monday from Meaux Guns and Ammo on Mammoth Avenue in Baton Rouge.

Masked burglars stole firearms early Monday morning from Meaux Guns and Ammo, a store that replaced Red Jacket Firearms on Mammoth Avenue in Baton Rouge. Baton Rouge police are trying to identify the people caught on security footage. They believe the burglars broke into the business and took an undisclosed amount of weapons… Continue reading →

Legislative auditor: Medicaid privatization savings hard to nail down

Daryl Purpera

Gov. Bobby Jindal’s signature Medicaid privatization program may be saving the state money, but it’s hard to tell for sure, the legislative auditor said Monday. The true savings are difficult to calculate because no baseline was established beforehand to use for a comparison with traditional Medicaid, Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera said. The auditor said that based… Continue reading →

CNN Report: La. Gov. Bobby Jindal isn't getting the Koch Brothers attention he wants

Republican presidential candidate Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal engages in an animated conversation with an unseen person while visiting a dance class at a senior center in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Wednesday, July 1, 2015. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

. It's not just the early nomination contests in Iowa or New Hampshire that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is worried about in his bid to become 2016 Republican candidate for president: There's also the "Koch Brothers primary," the competition to win the lucrative blessing of the billionaire siblings who bankroll conservative advocacy groups and plan to spend… Continue reading →

Brown & Root, formed by combining two firms, to call Baton Rouge home, employ 6,000 in U.S., Mexico, Canada

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Butch Taylor, left, and Brad Roy of Advantage Signs and Contractors hang a banner advertising Brown & Root Industrial Services over the Whitney Bank sign at the industrial services' new location at 2600 Citiplace Drive off of Corporate Blvd., Monday, July 6, 2015.

Bernhard Capital Partners will combine its newly acquired Wink Engineering firm with Houston-based KBR Inc.’s industrial services group to form Brown & Root Industrial Services in Baton Rouge. Under the deal announced Monday, Brown & Root will be based at Citiplace on Corporate Boulevard. Brown & Root Industrial Services, a company… Continue reading →

Ten years after becoming a city, Central is growing but getting by with 2% sales tax, 3 city employees

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Central Mayor J.R. Shelton, at the welcome sign to the City's incorporated area.

When Central incorporated 10 years ago, leaders of the community north of Baton Rouge launched what has become a decadelong experiment in local government, running on a lean budget funded solely by a 2 percent sales tax. They vowed not to raise the tax, promising to keep costs low by contracting all services out to… Continue reading →

Receiver Avery Peterson, brother of former LSU All-American Patrick Peterson, on leaving football team: 'It really breaks my heart'

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- LSU Freshman wide receiver Avery Peterson (2) runs drills Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2013 in the McClendon Practice Facility.

Avery Peterson’s star-crossed career at LSU has apparently come to an end.
The Tigers wide receiver, the younger brother of former LSU All-American cornerback Patrick Peterson, announced on his Facebook page he plans to leave the program. He played in only one game in two years with the Tigers.
“After so much thought and prayers and after talking to the… Continue reading →

Lafayette Crime Blotter for July 6

Arrests posted July 5, 2015, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. JASON FRANCIS AUGUSTINE: 34, of the 200 block of Lasalle Street, Lafayette. He was booked on shoplifting and misdemeanor theft. PARIS BROWN: 22, of the 100 block of Auburn Drive, Carencro. She was booked on disturbing the peace.… Continue reading → doesn't think U-High and LSU prospect Dylan Moses is the top football prospect for 2017; but he's very close

Advocate staff photo by ANGELA MAJOR -- All-Metro MVP Dylan Moses

They called him their “1A,” but declined to list University High star and LSU commitment Dylan Moses as its No. 1 prospect in its initial 2017 Rivals 100 released Monday.

That distinction instead went to defensive tackle Marvin Wilson of Houston Episcopal. Moses (6-2, 225) came in at No. 2, though with Rivals’ Mike Farrell saying it was… Continue reading →

Throngs of Baton Rouge soccer fans turn out for U.S. Women’s victory

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Soccer fans react to the United States' third goal in the 14th minute of the game as they pack the Londoner Grill in Baton Rouge, Sunday, July 5, 2015, during the Women's World Cup Finals between the United States and Japan.

If anyone missed their chance to wear clothes adorned with the American flag on Saturday, they got another shot on Sunday while celebrating the U.S. women’s soccer team. Patriotic enthusiasm spilled over from the Fourth of July holiday, as World Cup soccer fans — many attired in red, white and blue — turned out in force to… Continue reading →