LAFAYETTE — The FBI is investigating St. Landry Parish School Board members John Miller and Quincy Richard, FBI spokesman Kyle Hanrahan confirmed Tuesday.
While Hanrahan wouldn’t provide details of the investigation, the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office released a report Tuesday about an FBI agent looking into allegations that Miller, 71, and Richard, 50, were trying to extort money in exchange for their votes for a new superintendent in the school district.
The report was apparently written to officially detail why FBI agent Jeff Goins visited the parish.
According to the report, Goins called the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office just before midnight Tuesday to report that he met with Miller and Richard at The Quarters, a gas station located off Interstate 49 between Opelousas and Washington.
Goins told the Sheriff’s Office “he was working a sting operation at The Quarters in reference to (Miller and Richard) extorting money from Joseph Cassimere in exchange for their vote on the Wednesday election,” according to the report.
Cassimere, who is the district’s interim superintendent, is one of five candidates vying for the position of St. Landry Parish school superintendent. The board planned to make its final selection for the position at a special meeting Wednesday, but it was canceled because of the investigation, said Jacqueline Gennuso, Cassimere’s secretary.
The report states that Goins “advised Mr. Miller and Mr. Richard to stay away from Mr. Cassimere …” and for Cassimere to contact the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office if either man attempted to contact him.
Hanrahan said that no arrests have been made related to the investigation.
Voicemail messages left for Miller and Richard were not returned.
Cassimere said Tuesday he could not comment on the investigation.
“I cannot discuss this. It is an ongoing investigation. I will allow the traditional system to continue their investigation,” he said.
When asked if he filed the complaint that led to the investigation, Cassimere repeated that he could not discuss the matter.
Cassimere was appointed interim superintendent in March and is the second interim superintendent to lead the district since the resignation of former Superintendent Michael Nassif in November.
Past board President Huey Wyble said he was “stunned” by the news of the investigation.
“I had to sit down when I heard,” Wyble said Tuesday afternoon. “I never even thought anything like this would have happened. All of the board members are good friends of mine.”
The other four candidates for the position are:
- Edward Brown, St. Landry Parish School System Child Welfare and Attendance Supervisor;
- William Duplechain, Port Barre High School principal;
- Charles Michel, Lafourche Parish Supervisor of Special Education; and
- Daniel Rawls, Stephensville High School principal.