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2-year-old shot while playing near French Quarter

Advocate staff photo by MATT SLEDGE: Crime scene near where a 2-year-old girl was shot while playing outside Governor Nicholls Street on Monday.

A two-year-old girl was shot in the leg while playing outside on Governor Nicholls Street just north of the French Quarter on Monday night. The toddler was outside playing with other children and adults when an unknown male approached and fired two shots before fleeing north, Officer Hilal Williams said. She was taken to the hospital.… Continue reading →

Offshore drilling regulation lacking despite training efforts

FILE -  In this April 21, 2010 file photo, oil can be seen in the Gulf of Mexico, more than 50 miles southeast of Venice on Louisiana's tip, as a large plume of smoke rises from fires on BP's Deepwater Horizon offshore oil rig. A week shy of the fifth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Obama administration proposed new regulations Monday aimed at strengthening oversight of offshore oil drilling equipment and ensuring that out-of-control wells can be sealed in an emergency.  (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

It’s been called the Big Crew Change. If BP’s Macondo well blowout and catastrophic oil spill five years ago didn’t scare the oil and gas industry straight, the impending loss of 50 percent of its offshore workforce to retirement by 2018 certainly did. “We plan on hiring several hundred new… Continue reading →

3 plead guilty in New Orleans to running violent interstate prostitution ring

Three Memphis, Tennessee, men accused of enslaving and beating prostitutes in New Orleans pleaded guilty to federal charges Monday, bringing to five the number of pimps convicted here in an interstate sex trafficking ring. Christopher “Gutter” Williams, Duane “P-Nut” Phillips and Anthony “Animal” Ellis admitted to conspiring to commit sex trafficking. They face up to life… Continue reading →

Judge declines to unseal records in case against St. Bernard Parish President David Peralta

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- St. Bernard Parish President David Peralta arrives at the parish courthouse Tuesday, March 3, 2015.

A state judge on Monday declined to unseal grand jury records that St. Bernard Parish President David Peralta says would prove his indictment last year on a charge of sexual battery was tainted by perjured testimony. Peralta wants the records unsealed now that prosecutors have dropped the sexual battery charge after failing to convince ad hoc… Continue reading →

Huntington Ingalls, Kinder Morgan decide against Avondale joint venture

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER --  Avondale shipyards, once a bustling place is now largely a ghost town.

Driving to the Union Hall on Bridge City Avenue on Monday afternoon, Andrew Croom had not yet gotten word that Huntington Ingalls and Kinder Morgan had just decided against pursuing a joint venture that could have brought at least some work back to the once-bustling, now nearly deserted Avondale Shipyard. The news hardly came as a… Continue reading →

Michelle Obama congratulates New Orleans for effectively ending veterans homelessness

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- First lady Michelle Obama was in town Monday, April 20, 2015 to laud the city for its efforts in addressing the issue of homeless veterans. Here she works the room after her speech.

Michelle Obama, appearing at Gallier Hall alongside Mayor Mitch Landrieu on Monday to congratulate New Orleans for being the first major American city to effectively eliminate homelessness among military veterans, announced a trio of new measures aimed at helping cities across the country do the same thing. Obama said the federal government is releasing… Continue reading →

Man booked in St. Charles Parish’s first murder of the year

Sidney Smith

Twenty-two-year-old Sidney K. Smith turned himself in Sunday night and was booked on a charge of second-degree murder in St. Charles Parish’s first slaying of 2015. Witnesses told police that Smith confronted 28-year-old Warren Sanders of LaPlace around 9 p.m. over the latter’s interest in his girlfriend. Then, St. Charles Sheriff’s Office spokesman Capt. Patrick Yoes said,… Continue reading →

New pedestrian bridge will bring WWII Museum one step closer to completed renovation

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ-- The American Spirit Bridge is maneuvered before its placement at the National World War II Museum  in New Orleans, La. Sunday, April 19, 2015. According to the information provided by the museum the, 20 ton glass-and-metal pedestrian bridge will connect the museumÕs Louisiana Memorial Pavilion, home to the original D-Day Museum, with the rest of the six-acre campus for the first time. The new American Spirit Bridge will span Andrew Higgins Drive and help create a seamless visitor experience they said. The American Spirit Bridge is scheduled to open in December 2015.

Installing a pedestrian bridge that will for the first time connect the two main parts of the National World War II Museum marks a major step in the completion of an ambitious $325 million capital expansion program, officials said Sunday. As the steel frame of the 87-foot-long, approximately 20-ton American Spirit Bridge was hoisted off a flatbed… Continue reading →

Man who escaped from New Orleans Police Department custody early Sunday morning identified, but still at large

Eddie Brown

Authorities are looking for Eddie Brown, 28, who escaped from New Orleans police custody Sunday morning. Police said he escaped about 3:50 a.m. after he was transported back to Central Lock-Up from Interim LSU Hospital, where he received a cast on his right arm. He maneuvered his way out of his handcuffs and escaped through an open… Continue reading →

Car hits bicycle, kills rider in downtown New Orleans

. A 49-year-old man died Saturday after he was struck and run over in the Central Business District on his bicycle, according to the New Orleans Police Department.

Saturday around 5:30 p.m. the man ran a stop sign on his bicycle at Cleveland and South Saratoga Streets, according to witnesses. A 35-year-old man driving a red… Continue reading →

Debate continues over proper level of BP payments for economic losses

Five years and $28 billion later, the debate goes on: Has BP paid enough? Dire economic predictions followed the 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig. Pessimists said the vast amount of oil flowing into the Gulf of Mexico would lead to mass layoffs, business closures and plummeting property values all along the Gulf… Continue reading →

St. Bernard voters being asked again to boost millage for flood protection

St. Bernard Parish voters will soon decide, once again, whether to pay higher taxes to help maintain the levees, floodwalls and drainage system in the parish. The Lake Borgne Basin Levee District, which covers St. Bernard, is seeking a 7.5-mill tax increase that officials say is necessary to maintain the flood protection system built by the… Continue reading →

State budget leaves $88 million gap for finishing new University Medical Center in New Orleans

Artist rendering of University Medical Center affiliated with Louisiana State Univeristy and LSU Health (Artist's rendering of University Medical Center provided by LSU)

Even as the final touches are being put on the facilities that will house the new University Medical Center in Mid-City, the structure of the deal to run the hospital is being thrown into doubt. The state has poured $1.2 billion into the campus between Canal Street and Tulane Avenue, which officials have said will… Continue reading →

Family-owned New Orleans grocery celebrates 90 years, four generations

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--The Terranova Super Market celebrated its 90th anniversary in New Orleans, La. Saturday, April 18, 2015. The store was founded by the late Benjamin and Lena Terranova, she of Contessa-Entellina, Sicily and transported to New Orleans for her marriage. The second generation to run the store was the late Anthony Terranova and his wife, Lorraine, center, followed by Benny and Karen Terranova, right, followed by the fourth generation Anthony, second left, and his wife, Jennifer, left, who married into the clan seven years ago and has worked there since, and Amy Terranova, third from left.

In this era of Costco and Sam’s, nobody expects a little family-owned grocery store to last into its fourth generation — not even the owners. “What store exists for 90 years?” the unflappable Karen Terranova asked recently as she coaxed a neighborhood child to come behind the counter at Terranova’s Supermarket. Between taking care of customers,… Continue reading →

Benefit fund set up for St. Charles deputy shot by Navy veteran

This undated photo released by the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office shows Cpl. Burt Hazeltine. The 36-year-old Louisiana sheriff's deputy was directing traffic in a school zone Thursday, April 16, 2015, when he was shot by a man whose motive remains a mystery, authorities said. (St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office via AP)

. A benefit fund has been set up for the St. Charles Parish deputy who authorities say was shot by a Navy veteran and former Transportation Security Administration agent while directing traffic Thursday morning in Paradis. The St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office and the St. Charles Fraternal Order of Police No. 15 have joined to establish… Continue reading →

Mass honors 15 excavated from a French Quarter courtyard, reinterred

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ-- The Kumbuka African Dance and Drum Collective perform AjaJa, a Nigerian ceremonial dance honoring the dead, as they leave St. Augustine Church after a Catholic Memorial Mass for 15 people reburied in St. Louis Number 1 from the old St. Peter Cemetery Mass  in New Orleans, La. Saturday, April 18, 2015. The St. Peter Cemetery was New Orleans first cemetery  and whites, free people of color, slave and Native Americans were buried their. It  was built over centuries ago but recent construction unearthed bodies. The old site, which is on private land now, is bounded by St. Peter Street, Burgundy, Toulouse and N. Rampart Streets.

The few hundred people who danced, sang and prayed at Saturday’s funeral service hadn’t personally known the deceased, who died 250 years ago. Yet they knew something about the people whose lives they celebrated, through LSU’s FACES forensic lab, which X-rayed, reconstructed and studied the 15 bodies excavated from a French Quarter courtyard in 2011… Continue reading →

Man who allegedly shot St. Charles deputy was Navy veteran who left TSA on bad terms

The man who authorities say ambushed a St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy who was directing traffic Thursday morning was a Navy veteran who perhaps had a grudge against his former employers at the Transportation Security Administration and whose ex-wife described him on social media as abusive and drug-addicted. A judge set bail for the 58-year-old… Continue reading →

Longtime Plaquemines Parish Assessor Bobby Gravolet to retire in 2016 after 9 terms

Plaquemines Parish Assessor

Plaquemines Parish Assessor Bobby Gravolet, one of the longest-serving politicians in the New Orleans metro area and possibly the longest-serving assessor in Louisiana, announced Friday that he will retire when his ninth term expires next year. By then, Gravolet will have served 36 years in office and worked with at least nine parish presidents,… Continue reading →

Accountant testifies about frustrations in Esplanade Avenue studio audit

An accountant hired to audit the renovation of a post-production studio on Esplanade Avenue told jurors this week that she became increasingly skeptical of the financial records she received from two partners in the project who now stand accused of inflating its costs to fool the state into issuing film tax credits. The accountant, Katie Kuchler… Continue reading →

Paddlewheelers to include pre-, post-cruise packages in New Orleans

American Cruise Lines, which operates paddlewheelers Queen of the Mississippi and the American Eagle on the Mississippi River, plans to offer pre- and post-cruise extension packages beginning this summer. Highlights will include the culture, history and entertainment in U.S. ports the company serves, including New Orleans. The packages include hotel accommodations; ship, hotel and airport transfers;… Continue reading →

Businessman Arnold Baker appointed to Port of New Orleans board

Arnold B. Baker, owner and founder of New Orleans-based Baker Ready Mix and Building Materials, has been appointed to the Port of New Orleans board of commissioners by Gov. Bobby Jindal. Baker will serve a five-year term, succeeding Daniel F. Packer, as one of four Orleans Parish representatives on the seven-member regional board that governs port operations… Continue reading →

New Orleans Police Department arrests man for shooting woman inside a restaurant on Canal Street

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--NOPD officers work the crime scene at the China Wall restaurant where a woman was shot in the head at the intersection of Canal and Elk Streets around 4:30 pm and she was rushed to the hospital and is in critical condition in New Orleans, La. Friday, April 17, 2015. A possible suspect was taken into custody at the scene, according to police.

New Orleans police arrested 23-year-old Travone Williams on Friday for allegedly opening fire on a woman inside a restaurant on Canal Street. The woman was taken to the hospital in critical condition, authorities said. Gunfire erupted about 4:20 p.m. inside the China Wall restaurant, near Rampart Street. Police said Williams entered the restaurant around 4:05 p.m.… Continue reading →

LLOG begins production from deepwater hub

Covington-based LLOG Exploration Co. and joint-venture partner Blackstone Energy Group have begun production from a massive, floating production system in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. Delta House floating production system lies about 130 miles southeast of New Orleans. The hub and platform can handle peak daily production of 100,000 barrels of oil and 240 million cubic feet… Continue reading →

NOPD fires 25-year veteran cop for punching man after 2013 fender-bender

The New Orleans Police Department on Friday fired a 25-year veteran of the force over an alleged road-rage beating in which the off-duty cop punched a driver so hard he went to the hospital following a minor collision, police said. The officer, Tracy Fulton Sr., was terminated after an internal investigation found “clear and convincing evidence”… Continue reading →

Several bars, restaurants join in suit to strike down New Orleans' smoking ban

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- The city council chamber was packed with people on both sides of the smoking ban Thursday, January 22, 2015. The measure passed.

Harrah’s Casino and dozens of French Quarter bars and restaurants filed suit Friday to strike down New Orleans’ smoking ban just days before it is set to go into effect. The suit, filed in Civil District Court, included a request for a temporary restraining order that would have prevented the city from enforcing the ban, which… Continue reading →

Lawyer: Peralta target of new grand jury in East Baton Rouge

Days after a sexual battery charge against him was dropped on the eve of a trial, St. Bernard Parish President David Peralta alleged in court Friday that he’s been the victim of an audacious political prosecution, claiming that Attorney General Buddy Caldwell is feverishly trying to indict him in order to scuttle Peralta’s re-election chances and hand the… Continue reading →

Greg Jennings leaves New Orleans following visit with Saints

Greg Jennings’ visit with the Saints has come to an end.

The veteran wide receiver met with the team on Thursday and left New Orleans later that evening. It was the last visit he currently has scheduled after also meeting with the Carolina Panthers, Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars, according to a source.

Jennings has also received interest from the… Continue reading →

Judge sets bond for man accused of shooting St. Charles Parish deputy at $1 million

A day after he allegedly opened fire on a St. Charles Parish deputy in an apparent ambush, a judge ordered that John Paul Devillier be held in jail on attempted murder charges in lieu of a $1 million bond. Devillier’s first appearance before 29th Judicial District Judge Emile St. Pierre was brief Friday morning, with… Continue reading →

Landrieu administration now likely to go on offensive against New Orleans firefighters

Advocate staff file photo by JOHN McCUSKER --  The last of three public forums will be held between New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the city's firefighters to find a solution to funding the Fire Department's underfunded pension system

The simmering animosity between Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration and New Orleans firefighters over the funding of the firefighters pension system is likely to break into open hostility soon, with city officials set to move forward with a series of legal challenges and legislative changes aimed at curtailing benefits they say are beyond the means of the… Continue reading →