West Baton Rouge deputy jailed on drug counts

A West Baton Rouge Parish sheriff’s major who once led the agency’s narcotics division has been arrested on drug charges, including possession of crack cocaine and several painkillers.

Maj. Jerome Fontenot, a 17-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office, was booked into the Parish Jail for possession with the intent to distribute 45 pills of Oxycodone, 28 pills of Valium, 15 pills of codeine, 1 gram of crack cocaine and malfeasance in office, according to booking records.

Authorities would not reveal many details Tuesday surrounding the arrest of Fontenot, who worked in the Sheriff’s Office’s computer technology department. He also had served as the chief of the Sheriff’s Office’s Narcotics Division until 2006.

Col. Richie Johnson said Fontenot was arrested around 11 p.m. Monday after he was found in possession of several prescription drugs.

Johnson said Fontenot was transferred to the Iberville Parish Jail for safety reasons and is being held on a $100,000 bond. His arrest came after he was suspended Friday for an unrelated matter, Johnson said. Fontenot has since resigned.

Johnson would not provide further details about Fontenot’s suspension, saying it was an ongoing investigation but said more details could be released as early as Wednesday.

Fontenot worked for the Pointe Coupee Parish Sheriff’s Office for about 15 years before coming to the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office, parish officials said.