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Attorney seeks less restrictive environment for man found not guilty by reason of insanity in 1993 killing of Lafayette psychiatrist

The attorney for a man committed to mental facilities for killing a Lafayette psychiatrist in 1993 says he’ll ask an appeals court to override a district judge’s decision that is keeping his client confined to a state-run group home in Baton Rouge where his freedom is restricted. Attorney Thomas Guilbeau on Thursday alerted 15th District Judge… Continue reading →

Facing slumping sales tax receipts, Lafayette Mayor-President Joel Robideaux puts staff on notice of possible budget cuts

Joel Robideaux

Lafayette City-Parish Mayor-President Joel Robideaux has put staff on notice of possible budget cuts following three consecutive months of sluggish sales tax collections for the fiscal year that began Nov. 1. “In the event of continued weakness in sales tax revenue, I am committed to working with the council to ensure that available resources are spent… Continue reading →

Nine arrested, three more sought in Acadiana drug prescription fraud ring

Photos provided by LAFAYETTE METRO NARCOTICS TASK FORCE -- Pictured from left are Neal Allan Begnaud; Kristoffer Seth Bonin; Jon Paul Boudreaux; Timothy Paul Boudreaux; Robert Gregory Brazell; Colby James Courville; Nicholas Jude Courville; Jason Paul Delafosse; Zachary Michael Lee; Gary Gustave Martin Jr.; Thea Rae Sonnier; and Grant F. Vercher.

Authorities on Thursday made another nine arrests and are searching for three more people in a prescription fraud ring in which faked documents were created to get an assortment of pills to sell for profit. Those arrested are accused of using the names of Acadiana-area doctors on more than 150 fraudulent prescriptions for drugs including oxycodone… Continue reading →

Lafayette arrest report for Feb. 11

Arrests posted Feb. 10, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. JONATHAN WAYNE AUBREY: 32, of the 300 block of Hibou Road, Carencro. He was booked on misdemeanor domestic abuse battery. STEVEN J. BENOIT: 59, of the 100 block of Gaynor Drive, Scott. He was booked on hold for St. Landry Parish.… Continue reading →

Buddhist monk accused of misusing money from Lafayette temple for gambling faces trial after plea deal craters

Advocate staff photo by BRAD BOWIE -- Khang Nguyen Le, left, arrives at the Lafayette Federal Courthouse on Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016.

A Buddhist monk accused of using a Lafayette temple’s money to fund a blackjack habit will face trial in March after a federal judge on Wednesday rejected his second attempt at entering a guilty plea, one that unhinged on the Vietnamese man’s apparent misunderstanding of the charge lodged against him. Khang Nguyen Le, the former presiding… Continue reading →

Traffic stop near Henderson leads to discovery of 202 pounts of marijuana in Tennessee man’s truck

A traffic stop on Interstate 10 near Henderson on Wednesday led to the arrest of a Tennessee man found with 202 pounds of marijuana in his truck, Louisiana State Police said. Michael Willis, 59, of LaFollette, Tennessee, was booked on possession with intent to distribute marijuana after a search revealed he had the large quantity of the… Continue reading →

Lafayette arrest report for Feb. 10

Arrests posted Feb. 9, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. MARK ANZALONE: 20, of the 100 block of Chemin Metairie Road, Youngsville. He was booked on theft under $100 and shoplifting. JACOBY JAMES BATISTE: 28, of the 3300 block of Main Highway, Breaux Bridge. He was booked on aggravated second-degree battery… Continue reading →

Family plays a big part of Mardi Gras revelry in Acadiana

Advocate Photo by BRAD KEMP King Gaberiel LXXVII Dewitt David, Jr. waves to the crowd Tuesday Feb. 9, 2016 during the King's Parade on Mardi Gras Day in Lafayette, La..

Mardi Gras in south Louisiana is about more than beads, beer and parties, although there’s certainly plenty of all three of those. For some, it’s also a special time to celebrate tradition with family. The family aspects of Carnival were evident in the crowds lining the parade routes in… Continue reading →

Lafayette arrest report for Feb. 9

Arrests posted Feb. 8, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. IZELL WILSON ANDRUS: 23, of the 200 block of Peppermill Drive, Lafayette. He was booked on operating a vehicle with a suspended license and shoplifting. RYHEEM JOSEPH AUGUSTINE: 18, of the 400 block of Edison Street, Lafayette. He… Continue reading →

Patterson man accused of molesting 9-year-old girl

A 20-year-old Patterson man arrested on Friday is accused of sexually molesting a 9-year-old girl. Joshua T. Miller, 20, 117 Laura Drive, was booked on a warrant for aggravated crime against nature, according to the St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office. Investigators determined Miller touched the girl inappropriately when she was 9 years old, although the Sheriff’s… Continue reading →

Victor White III's family, supporters refuse to accept narrative he shot himself while cuffed in Iberia Sheriff’s vehicle

Photo by LANIE LEE COOK -- Surrounded by supporters and members of the Lafayette NAACP, the Rev. Victor White Sr., of Alexandria, speaks to the media on Feb. 8, 2016, about the 16th Judicial District Attorney's Office's announcement that no criminal charges will be filed in the shooting death of his son, Victor White III, while handcuffed in the back of an Iberia Parish Sheriff's deputy's car.

Acadiana-area residents who have protested Victor White III’s death while in Iberia Parish police custody gathered Monday in Lafayette to reiterate their continued support for the 22-year-old’s family after state and federal prosecutors closed the door on potential criminal charges in the case. At Imani Temple on East Willow Street — a familiar setting for a… Continue reading →

Lafayette eyeing ‘no kill’ shelter options — 4 of every 5 cats, half of all dogs taken in at shelter last year euthanized

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK --  Volunteer Vickie Stevens holds a cat named Jerry Thursday, February 4, 2016, at Lafayette Animal Control Center in Lafayette, La.

Four out of every five cats that wind up at the Lafayette Animal Control Center’s shelter don’t make it out alive. In all, the shelter euthanized 1,764 felines last year, some because of illness or temperament but many because there is not enough space to keep them and there are not enough families willing to take… Continue reading →

Around Acadiana for Feb. 9, 2016

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK -- Acadiana Advocate reporters Billy Gunn, from left, Lanie Lee Cook and Richard Burgess photographed January 21, 2016.

Cajun and Creole music, dancing, crafts and storytelling will be featured Saturday in Eunice as part of the celebration of the National Park Service’s centennial. Children may participate in the Explore and Restore craft workshop from 10 a.m. to noon at the Prairie Acadiana Cultural Center, 250 W. Park Ave. Cajun Conversations meets from 1 p.m.… Continue reading →

Lafayette arrest report for Feb. 8

Arrests posted Feb. 8, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. CHRISTOPHER JOSEPH ALEXANDER: 38, of the 100 block of Arizona Street, Lafayette. He was booked on felony illegal possession of stolen things. SHAQUILLE BELL: 17, of the 700 block of Berlin Street, Lafayette. He was booked on negligent injuring. Samantha… Continue reading →

Acadiana Crime Blotter for Feb. 8, 2016

Arrests posted Feb. 7, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website: Dorsey Ray Broussard: 25, of the 4900 block of Northeast Evangeline Thruway, Carencro. He was booked on felony domestic-abuse child endangerment. Mark Louis Courville: 53, of the 1000 block of Poydras Place, Breaux Bridge. He was booked on domestic abuse aggravated assault and aggravated assault.… Continue reading →

Six middle school science-savvy kids to bring their robot to First Lego League world championship in May

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK -- Team Phoenix members Miguel Pagan, 11, left, and Joseph Williams, 10, set up their Lego robot "Scorcher" that they programmed to perform specific tasks for competitions Friday, January 22, 2016, at Maxim Doucet Hall on the University of Louisiana at Lafayette campus in Lafayette, La.

Team Phoenix, six science-savvy middle school boys from Lafayette, will travel to Fayetteville, Arkansas, with their LEGO robot in May to compete against 72 teams from across the world in the First LEGO League competition. In the league, teams of six create an innovative solution to a problem and present their end… Continue reading →

Passenger killed in wreck, driver arrested, suspected of being impaired

State troopers arrested a 19-year-old driver Sunday suspected of being impaired after a single-vehicle car crash that killed one passenger and injured another. Ailayjah Derouen, of New Iberia, was driving a 2001 Buick Lesabre eastbound on La. 182 in Iberia Parish around 2 a.m. Sunday when she crossed over the westbound lane and drove off the side… Continue reading →

15-year-old shot in neck Saturday in Lafayette; 16-year-old arrested

. A 15-year-old boy was shot in the neck Saturday in Lafayette, police said. Around 5:45 p.m., Lafayette police responded to a shooting in the 100 block of Petunia Loop, where they found the victim with a gunshot wound to the neck. He was transported to an area hospital and is in stable condition, the Lafayette Police Department… Continue reading →

Ironing machine catches fire at Scott business Sunday morning; no injuries

. Firefighters put out a small fire Sunday morning at a business on North Ambassador Caffery Parkway in Scott, officials said. At 10:24 a.m., Scott firefighters were called to a commercial fire at Single Source Supply at 130 North Ambassador Caffery Parkway, the Scott Volunteer Fire Department said in a news release. At the scene, firefighters saw a… Continue reading →

David, Blanchet picked to rule over Lafayette Mardi Gras 2016

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK --  2016 Krewe of Gabriel royalty King Gabriel LXXVII Dewitt "Zeen" David and Queen Evangeline LXXVII Katie Blanchet are pictured at Blanchet's parents' home Friday, February 5, 2016, in Lafayette, La.

After months of secrecy, it’s official. King Gabriel LXXVII Dewitt Clinton David Jr. and Queen Evangeline LXXVII Katherine Elise “Katie” Blanchet will rule over Lafayette Mardi Gras 2016. Lafayette’s Carnival season began on Jan. 6 with the Feast of the Epiphany and culminates in an intense, five-day event ending Tuesday night with the Greater… Continue reading →

Lafayette Children’s Parade passes Mardi Gras traditions on to the kids

Advocate photo by PAUL KIEU -- Elise Lafleur, 9, tosses beads into a crowd during the Children's Parade on February 6, 2016,  in downtown Lafayette, LA.

Call it a training exercise of sorts for kids in the traditions of Mardi Gras. The Lafayette Children’s Parade this year featured six Mardi Gras krewes of children in elaborate Carnival costumes and gowns tossing trinkets to excited, screaming paradegoers in downtown Lafayette. This year’s children’s parade, the 90th annual such parade, featured 18 floats. But… Continue reading →

Lafayette crime blotter for Feb. 6, 2016

Arrests posted Feb. 6, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s web site: MONTANA JAMES ALLEMAN: 27, of the 1400 block of N. Wilderness Trail, Lafayette. He was booked on two counts of prohibited activities (drug paraphernalia); resisting an officer; and five counts of warrant/bench warrant.… Continue reading →

Scott police seeking five people believed involved in cashing fraudulent checks throughout Acadiana

Photo provided by SCOTT POLICE DEPARTMENT -- Warrants were issued on Feb. 5, 2015, for Darren Guidry, 18; Hailey Lowery, 20; RaShawn Murray, 28; Tonya Myers, 42; and Marcus Scott, 35, on counts of monetary instrument abuse and theft after all were captured on surveillance video cashing fraudulent checks at a Scott grocery store, according to the Scott Police Department.

Scott police are seeking five people wanted on cashing fraudulent checks throughout Acadiana. Darren Guidry, 18; Hailey Lowery, 20; RaShawn Murray, 28; Tonya Myers, 42; and Marcus Scott, 35, were all captured on surveillance video cashing fraudulent checks at a Scott grocery store, according to a news release Friday from the Scott Police Department. All face counts… Continue reading →

Bright spot in a dismal energy sector: multi-billion dollar LNG and petrochemical projects in Cameron, Calcasieu

Acadiana businesses interested in participating in the multi-billion dollar liquefied natural gas industry and petrochemical projects in Cameron and Calcasieu parishes can attend one or both informational sessions scheduled this month. The Lafayette Economic Development Authority along with the Cameron Parish Police Jury will host a seminar titled “Business Opportunities: LNG Projects in Cameron Parish” from… Continue reading →

KATC-TV: Former Acadiana priest found guilty of rape, molestation

Former priest Mark Broussard was found guilty of two counts aggravated rape, one count molestation of a juvenile, one count aggravated oral sexual battery and one count oral sexual battery in cases that date back to the 1980s in Acadiana. Broussard was living in Duson when he was arrested in 2012 on rape and sexual battery… Continue reading →

KATC-TV: Youngsville woman accused of harboring sick, dead pigs in abandoned home

Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s deputies on Thursday arrested a Youngsville woman on counts of animal cruelty after they found eight malnourished pot-bellied pigs and two dead ones inside an abandoned house, KATC-TV reported. Kristie Holbert, 42, was booked into the Lafayette Parish jail on two counts of aggravated cruelty to animals and eight counts of cruelty to animals.… Continue reading →

District Attorney says no criminal charges will be filed in death of handcuffed man shot in backseat of Iberia Parish deputy’s car

Victor White III

Saying evidence is lacking to disprove the official account that Victor White III shot and killed himself while handcuffed in the back of a police car, the 16th Judicial District Attorney’s Office announced Friday it will not file criminal charges in the case. Carol Powell Lexing, a Monroe-based civil rights attorney who represents the family in… Continue reading →

One Acadiana taps Iberia Bank’s Vascocu to chair economic development organization

Photo provided by One Acadiana -- Jerry Vascocu was selected the 2016 Chairman of its Board of Directors of One Acadiana.

One Acadiana has selected IberiaBank executive Jerry Vascocu as its 2016 chairman of the board of directors for the nine-parish regional economic development organization. Vascocu is IberiaBank president for the Acadiana region, and has served on One Acadiana’s board for the past four years, including when the organization was the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce. A… Continue reading →

Lafayette arrest report for Feb. 5

Arrests posted Feb. 4, 2016, on the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s website. CODY DONALD ARCENEAUX: 27, of the 100 block of Frank Street, Lafayette. He was booked on resisting an officer. BRANDON WILLY BROUSSARD: 25, of the 200 block of St. Anne Street, Carencro. He was booked on misdemeanor operating a vehicle while intoxicated.… Continue reading →

Chevron may layoff 385 workers in Covington, Lafayette and offshore

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK --  The Chevron North America Lafayette office could see job cuts. The oil giant says layoffs are possible for up 385 of the 1,800 workers in its Gulf of Mexico business unit's offices in Lafayette and Covington and from offshore operations.

American oil giant Chevron has reaffirmed forecasts that it may cut as many as 385 jobs in the Gulf of Mexico this year — 45 of them working offshore and the remainder in offices in Covington and Lafayette. The cuts could equal up to about one-fifth of Chevron’s Gulf of Mexico business unit’s 1,800 workers. The… Continue reading →

Two St. Landry School Board members threaten to file civil-rights complaint after appointment of white supervisor

Two members of the St. Landry Parish School Board are threatening to file a civil rights complaint after the superintendent announced his appointment of a white applicant for a supervisory position. Superintendent Edward Brown appointed June Inhern for supervisor of individualized instruction — an appointment that sparked criticism Thursday from board members… Continue reading →

Lafayette Parish faces possible cuts to rural services and projects as sales tax collections plummet during economic downturn

City-parish government’s sales tax collections in unincorporated areas of the parish are off nearly 27 percent this budget year, raising the specter of possible cuts for rural services and projects. The ailing oil patch has dampened nearly every facet of the economy, but unincorporated Lafayette Parish, with a tax base that relies heavily on industry, has… Continue reading →

Obama nominates Stephanie Finley for federal judgeship in western Louisiana district

Advocate staff file photo by BRYAN TUCK -- U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana Stephanie Finley, left, speaks about bribery indictments in a DWI probe during a 2013 press conference at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Lafayette. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Luke Walker and Rick Willis are at right.

U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley was nominated Thursday by President Barack Obama to serve as a federal judge in the U.S. Western District of Louisiana, which includes Lafayette, Lake Charles, Alexandria and Shreveport. Finley, a career federal prosecutor, has been U.S. attorney for the Western District since 2010. She was the first woman to serve as U.S.… Continue reading →