Jefferson deputy charged with beating jail inmate, and other New Orleans-area police news

Deputy charged with beating jail inmate

A Jefferson Parish sheriff’s deputy was charged in federal court this week in the beating last year of an inmate.

Gary Shine, a sergeant who has worked in the parish jail for nearly a decade, was charged in a bill of information with depriving an inmate identified only as “D.R.” of his rights.

According to the bill, Shine used excessive force when he kneed the handcuffed inmate and punched him in the head on Oct. 21, 2012.

Col. John Fortunato, of the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, said Wednesday that Shine has been reassigned to desk duty.

Shine joined the Sheriff’s Office in 2003.

“Apparently he had some type of issue with an inmate,” Fortunato said, declining to elaborate.

The federal filing does not further describe the incident, and Fortunato said no report on it was available.

Such civil rights prosecutions are rare, having been filed only 66 times in the three federal districts in Louisiana since 1986 — a little more than twice a year.

Until the charges against Shine, none had been filed in the state in nearly three years, federal records show.

Shine is due to appear for arraignment on Oct. 17.

Man steals computer and cellphone

A man stole a computer and a cellphone Tuesday from two people who were in a vehicle at the intersection of Chef Menteur Highway and Read Boulevard in New Orleans East.

According to police, the perpetrator had the victims lie on the ground while he stole the electronics from the car.

He fled on foot.

Man arrested in abuse of 3-year-old boy

A St. Bernard man was arrested in allegedly slapping and biting his 3-year-old son after the boy soiled himself, according to the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Joshua Drakin, 32, was booked with second-degree battery and cruelty to a juvenile in allegedly hitting his son on Friday while preparing to bathe him.

The slap caused the boy to slip and hit his face on the tub, authorities said.

According to the child’s mother, who was interviewed by a deputy at the hospital, she was awakened by her child’s screams and saw Drakin cleaning blood off him.

She told deputies that Drakin said he had “freaked out” when the child soiled himself.

The child also had a bite mark on his face, according to the mother.

Drakin admitted slapping the child but denied biting him. He is being held in St. Benard Parish Prison on $7,500 bond.

Woman dies in I-10 on-ramp accident

A 44-year-old woman was killed Wednesday in a traffic accident that occurred at the Interstate 10 entrance ramp near Louisa Street, according to New Orleans police spokesman Frank Robertson.

Robertson said that at about 12:30 p.m., a vehicle experiencing mechanical failure struck a transient standing on the side of the interstate.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

The vehicle also struck a light pole and eventually hit a Lexus SUV driven by a 22-year-old man and containing two infants.

They were transported to the hospital with minor injuries.

The accident is under investigation and no charges have been filed.

Teenager robbed of cellphone at gunpoint

A 13-year-old boy was robbed of his cellphone at gunpoint Tuesday evening in the 6200 block of Bridgehampton Drive in eastern New Orleans.

The victim was walking through his apartment complex when a man on a bicycle approached him, asked if he had a cellphone and then pulled out a gun.

After taking the phone, the man fled the scene.

Treme boardinghouse damaged in fire

The New Orleans Fire Department on Wednesday fought a residential fire at 1129 N. Robertson St. in the Treme neighborhood, according to Capt. Edwin Holmes Jr.

Firefighters arrived at the scene at 3:53 p.m. and found heavy smoke coming from the rear of the large single-story dwelling.

Holmes said firefighters had the blaze under control by 4:11 p.m. No one was in the property at the time.

Holmes said the dwelling’s owner described it as a boardinghouse. The cause of the fire is under investigation.