The man arrested in the disappearance of Mickey Shunick drove himself to a Jefferson Parish hospital for treatment of stab wounds on the same day the University of Louisiana at Lafayette student vanished, an official said Thursday.
That news came on the same day other officials made a fruitless search for Shunick at three sites near the home of Brandon Scott Lavergne in St. Landry Parish.
Lavergne was booked last week in Lafayette Parish on counts of first-degree murder and aggravated kidnapping in the disappearance of Shunick, who was last seen before 2 a.m. on May 19 leaving a friend’s house in Lafayette.
On Thursday evening, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office confirmed that Lavergne had filed a report May 19 alleging he was the victim of an aggravated assault. Deputies took the report at Oschner Hospital on Jefferson Highway, said Col. John Fortunato, commander of the public information office.
KATC–TV reported Thursday that the incident report states Lavergne showed up at Oschner Hospital just after 11 p.m. on May 19. Lavergne, who had been stabbed in the chest, back, neck and hand, said he was attacked outside a gas station at 3 p.m. that day, the TV station reported.
Lavergne also claimed his wallet was stolen, KATC reported.
The deputy writing the report indicated that the more he questioned Lavergne about the attack, the less information he began to provide, KATC reported.
Medical staff told deputies that Lavergne was allowed to leave the hospital because his injuries were not life-threatening, according to KATC. He told deputies he drove himself to the hospital and he had been in the area visiting a friend, indicating he would be returning home when he left the hospital, the TV station reported.
“The task force, to my knowledge, is aware of the incident,” Cpl. Paul Mouton, spokesman for Lafayette police said Thursday.
Mouton said he could not provide more details.
Earlier Thursday, investigators responded to a rural area in St. Landry Parish near Lavergne’s home after a farmer had reported a possible grave site on the edge of woods near his fields off U.S. 190 between Opelousas and Eunice.
St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz said his office received a tip from the farmer Wednesday night.
During a Thursday morning search of the fields, investigators found two other sites that appeared to be possible graves, Guidroz said, adding that each mound was about 6 feet long and 3 feet wide.
A four-hour search of all three sites concluded about 10 a.m. and turned up nothing, Guidroz said Thursday morning.
“We are back to the drawing board,” he said.
Lafayette police have said Lavergne was initially developed as a suspect after investigators received a tip June 14 connecting him to a white Chevrolet Z71 truck seen on surveillance video traveling in the same direction as Shunick near downtown Lafayette.
Lavergne’s truck was reported stolen in Texas and later found burned on May 31, a few days after police released a video image of the vehicle, police have said.
Investigators also have information linking Lavergne to the area under the Interstate 10 Whiskey Bay Bridge where Shunick’s bicycle was found May 26, Police Chief Jim Craft said at a news conference last week.
A grand jury is set to meet Wednesday to consider first-degree murder and aggravated kidnapping charges against Lavergne, a 33-year-old offshore worker.
Lavergne is a registered sex offender who served eight years on an aggravated oral sexual battery conviction for typing up, blindfolding and then sexually assaulting an 18-year-old woman in Evangeline Parish in 1999.
He was released from prison in 2008.