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Shoppers flock to stores on Thanksgiving for early deals

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Jim Bright, of New Orleans, waits in line in for a 40-inch TV and other items at Best Buy in Elmwood, La., Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014.

Black Friday made an early debut this year as shoppers flocked to big-box stores in Metairie and elsewhere Thanksgiving evening to get a head start on the holiday season’s best deals. As competition between stores heats up, shopping again spilled over into Thanksgiving Day, proving that retailers are starting to make Black Thursday a new annual… Continue reading →

Man shot dead in Violet after allegedly attacking woman

Ricky Moser

A man was shot dead in Violet late Wednesday night, according to the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office. Ricky Moser, 49, of Slidell, was killed just before midnight after going to the home of his estranged wife and allegedly striking the woman’s daughter in the head. Moser was killed by the daughter’s boyfriend, Sheriff James Pohlmann… Continue reading →

Bragging rights and more at stake in St. Charles Parish football rematch

Advocate Photo by KYLE ENCAR --With the sun setting, Alfred Smith (1), Isaiah Sterling (6), and Brandon Scott (40) storm onto the field at Wildcat Stadium in Destrehan on Friday, Oct. 3, 2014 before a week five matchup between the undefeated Destrehan Wildcats and the Hahnville Tigers.

When the 2014 high school football schedules came out in August, folks across St. Charles Parish circled the date of Oct. 3. That’s the day the two local teams, Hahnville and Destrehan high schools, would clash on the gridiron in the annual battle for district standing. For the parents and grandparents and aunts and… Continue reading →

Catholic Charities program seeks to reduce unnecessary ER visits

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Elliott Major is a client of the archdiocese's Health Guardians program, represented by Ben Wortham, left, which provides health care and housing services to individuals with low incomes who previously frequented the emergency room seen here in New Orleans, La. Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014.

After Elliott Major’s wife, son and grandson were killed in a car accident in 2003, he stopped working, gave away most of his money and eventually ended up sleeping on the streets. He also got sick. Major, 54, would have painful episodes of labored breathing. “I felt like I was going to die. Sometimes… Continue reading →

Walt Handelsman for Nov. 27, 2014

Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist and animator Walt Handelsman’s work appears in The New Orleans Advocate four days a week. Follow this link to the cartoon.Continue reading →

Teen, 17, wanted for auto theft

Cody Hunter

Police are trying to find a 17-year-old boy who is suspected in a recent auto theft. Cody Hunter allegedly stole the vehicle from the 200 block of South Dorgenois Street about 8:30 a.m. Sunday, police said. The victim told police he saw an unknown man get in his car and drive away in it. The victim… Continue reading →

Investigators: Algiers woman emailed, texted illicit video to embarrass teen

Jasmine Simonson

An 18-year-old Algiers woman was arrested in Plaquemines Parish on suspicion of distributing a sexual video involving two juveniles in an effort to embarrass one of them, the Sheriff’s Office said. Jasmine P. Simonson was booked on three counts of distribution of child pornography, said Commander Eric Becnel, a Sheriff’s Office spokesman. The investigation began Nov.… Continue reading →

Woman, 55, arrested for string of robberies in Jefferson Parish

Patricia Meadows

A 55-year-old woman has been arrested for allegedly robbing or trying to rob several businesses in Jefferson Parish. Patricia Meadows, who also goes by the name Patricia Tuttle, was booked Tuesday on one count each of armed robbery, attempted armed robbery and two counts of misdemeanor theft. She also was booked on three warrants issued Nov. 7… Continue reading →

Group hopes to restore long-vacant Leon Godchaux High in Reserve

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER -- The old Godchaux Grammar school in Reserve on Monday, Oct. 20, 2014.

Efforts are underway to restore a nearly century-old high school building in St. John the Baptist Parish that has fallen into disrepair — a project that could cost close to $5 million. The two-story Leon Godchaux High School, near the intersection of West 10th Street and River Road in Reserve, has been sitting vacant since the… Continue reading →

Man, 23, shot in thigh in Central City

A 23-year-old man was shot Wednesday afternoon in Central City, police said. The shooting was reported about 3 p.m. at South Liberty and Felicity streets. The victim was being treated at a hospital for a gunshot wound to his thigh, police said. His condition was not available.… Continue reading →

Police seek Beetlejuice in connection with French Quarter beating

New Orleans police are looking for a man dressed as Beetlejuice who might be able to help them identify two men wanted in connection with a recent beating in the French Quarter. The attack happened Nov. 1 at Orleans and Burgundy streets. About 1 a.m. the 29- and 37-year-old victims were at the corner when the… Continue reading →

Man sought in two Metairie armed robberies

Jefferson Parish authorities are trying to identify a man who robbed two Metairie businesses in recent days. The first robbery happened about 5 p.m. Friday at a Subway sandwich shop in the 3800 block of Veterans Boulevard. About 8:40 p.m. Saturday, he knocked off a Shell gas station in the 3400 block of West Esplanade Avenue.… Continue reading →

Body found inside garbage can behind Central City home

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON-- NOPD and the Coroner of Orleans Parish move about a crime  scene where a woman's body was found in the 3300 block of Danneel Street in New Orleans, La. Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. Graffiti artwork is paint on abandoned building next to where the body was found.

A woman’s partially clothed body was found Wednesday afternoon stuffed in a trash can that had been placed behind a Central City home, New Orleans police said. The unknown woman appeared to have been stabbed, said Officer Frank Robertson, a Police Department spokesman. An autopsy to determine the exact cause of death is pending. A city… Continue reading →

Jaguars, Tigers, fans flock to New Orleans for annual Bayou Classic rivalry

Advocate file photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND Lois Turner cheers on the Southern University Jaguars during first half action of the State Farm Bayou Classic at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011.

They won’t face each other on the football field until Saturday afternoon, but Jaguars and Tigers already are prowling the streets of New Orleans as the annual Bayou Classic kicks off its 41st year with a parade Thursday. About 200,000 visitors are expected to descend on the city to take in… Continue reading →

Mayor Mike Yenni takes initial steps to create Kenner sewer department

Kenner Mayor Mike Yenni

Kenner has taken the initial steps to create a city sewer department, a move that could bring the service, which is currently outsourced to a private contractor, in-house. Sewer services are now provided by Veolia Water North America, but Mayor Mike Yenni said the charter allows the city to create any department it deems necessary, and an… Continue reading →

Justice Department blasts Kurt Engelhardt in Danziger appeal, requests new judge in the event of retrial

FILE - In Jan., 2007 and June, 2011 file photos, five New Orleans police officers are seen in a combination of photos, in New Orleans. From left:  Robert Faulcon Jr., Robert Gisevius Jr., Kenneth Bowen, Anthony Villavaso II, and Arthur Kaufman. A federal judge on Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013ordered a new trial for the five former New Orleans police officers convicted of civil rights violations stemming from deadly shootings on a bridge in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt ruled Tuesday that the

In their bid to restore the convictions of five New Orleans police officers in the Danziger Bridge shooting, federal prosecutors have taken aim at the judge who ordered a new trial in the notorious case, accusing him of overstepping his bounds and exaggerating the impact of an online commenting scandal that roiled the U.S. Attorney’s Office.… Continue reading →

Orleans Parish School Board unsuccessful so far in luring Recovery School District charters back

Coleman Ridley

If the Orleans Parish School Board wants to draw academically successful charter schools back into its folds, those sought-after schools have a bit of advice: Polish your sales pitch, and explain what’s in it for us. The board of Crescent City Schools, which operates three charter schools in New Orleans, last week chided an OPSB… Continue reading →

International WorkBoat Show coming to New Orleans

In this photo provided by NBC Universal, Capt. Richard Phillips appears on NBC's

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Capt. Richard Phillips, whose ship was hijacked in 2009 by Somali pirates, will give the keynote speech as the 35th International WorkBoat Show opens at the New Orleans convention center next week. It was the first hijacking of a U.S. ship in more than 200 years. The story was made into the movie,… Continue reading →

Fleeing employees startle would-be robber, and other area police news

Timothy Borja

A man who tried to rob a Gentilly fast-food restaurant Sunday night ran away when fleeing employees startled him, New Orleans police said. The unknown robber, armed with a pistol, walked into the Wendy’s at 6166 Elysian Fields Ave. about 9:40 p.m. and demanded cash. The manager… Continue reading →

Stricken N.O. judge ‘recovering, improving’

Photos provided by Orleans Parish Civil District Court - Civil Court Judge Clare Jupiter is pictured last year holding her granddaughter Ayanna Perry,  with New Orleans District E Councilman James Gray, and Civil Court Judges Bernadette DSouza and Paula Brown.

Orleans Parish Civil District Court Judge Clare Jupiter remained hospitalized Tuesday, but she is recovering five days after suffering a sudden medical problem while conducting a conference with lawyers in her courthouse office, Chief Judge Kern Reese said . “She’s doing great. She’s awake, alert and convalescing,” Reese said Tuesday. “She’s recovering, improving.” Jupiter,… Continue reading →

Ex-St. Bernard prosecutor suspended over client complaints

A recently dismissed St. Bernard Parish prosecutor has been suspended from practicing law after he failed to address complaints filed against him with the Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board. The Louisiana Supreme Court handed attorney Gregory Duhy a yearlong suspension last week but deferred all but three months of it. Duhy will be placed on probation for… Continue reading →

Companies collaborate on virtual offices in New Orleans

Las Vegas-based Allied Offices has contracted with Abby Executive Suites to provide office workstations at Abby’s 23 locations in New Orleans, Houston, Dallas and San Antonio. The collaboration gives Allied access to virtual offices in Texas and Louisiana for use by entrepreneurs and telecommuters in need of workspace and meeting rooms. A virtual office allows an… Continue reading →

Frank S. Bruno, New Orleans lawyer and real estate developer, dies at 90

Frank Bruno

Frank S. Bruno, a retired New Orleans lawyer and real estate developer, died Sunday at his home. He was 90. Bruno, born to immigrant parents of Italian descent, graduated from Fortier High School. He spent his youth working alongside his father, a cabinetmaker, who had a shop on Magazine Street near Austerlitz Street.… Continue reading →

Plan for new French Quarter hotel wins committee’s OK

Over the objection of some French Quarter residents, the Vieux Carre Commission’s Architectural Committee gave initial approval Tuesday to a plan to convert a vacant 19th-century riverfront building into the first new French Quarter hotel in decades. The committee granted the proposal “conceptual approval,” the first of several steps in the process of getting permission… Continue reading →

Judge says tax vote banners on N.O. public schools can stay up for now

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- A group called

Orleans Parish School Board employees can no longer hang new signs at local campuses urging people to vote on an upcoming tax measure for public schools, but they do not have to take down existing signs, a judge ruled Tuesday. The signs don’t explicitly ask people to vote for the measure, but Civil District Court Judge… Continue reading →

Marigny Opera House -- site of Solange Knowles' New Orleans wedding -- shut down due to permit dispute

Photo by Pompo Bresciani -- The Marigny Opera House

The Marigny Opera House, a building spotlighted internationally last week as the setting of the glamorous wedding of Beyoncé’s sister, Solange Knowles, has been shut down for a second time this month while it works out a permitting dispute with the city, Executive Director Dave Hurlbert said Tuesday. The first sudden shuttering of the building,… Continue reading →

Destrehan teacher accused of having sex with student pleads not guilty

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER --  Former Destrehan High teacher Shelley Dufresne, left,  leaves the courthouse after appearing in St. Charles parish Tuesday, November 25, 2014.

Shelley Dufresne, one of two former Destrehan High School teachers accused of having sex with a 16-year-old student, made her first court appearance on Tuesday, saying nothing and showing little emotion as her lawyer entered a not guilty plea on her behalf in 29th Judicial District Court in Hahnville. St. Charles Parish prosecutors have formally charged… Continue reading →

Man with knife barricades self inside apartment, prompting NOPD SWAT roll

The New Orleans Police Department SWAT Team on Tuesday morning was talking to a man armed with a knife who barricaded himself inside a Canal Street apartment building. Officers were called about 5 a.m. to the Volunteers of America’s Duvernay Residence, 1801 Canal St., and spoke to a woman who said she and her ex-boyfriend got into… Continue reading →

Walt Handelsman for Nov. 25, 2014

Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist and animator Walt Handelsman’s work appears in The New Orleans Advocate four days a week. Follow this link to the cartoon.Continue reading →

Man shot to death in front of Uptown home identified, and other area police news

New Orleans police are asking for the public's help in locating this man who might have information about a burglary at a French Quarter barroom.

A man shot to death this month while he reportedly tried to steal a bicycle from outside an Uptown home has been identified. Jeffrey Rouse, the Orleans Parish coroner, said Monday that Timothy Rainwater, 39, died after being shot multiple times about 10 a.m.… Continue reading →

Brennan’s rebooted: Old-line restaurant reopens Tuesday with new owners, new direction

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON-- Ralph Brennan, right, tasked executive chef Slade Rushing, left, with charting a new culinary direction for Brennan's Restaurant.

It’s been the backdrop for a drama at the intersection of family and business. It’s been the scene of a massive construction project, with swarms of workers and billowing dust. Now, with Brennan’s Restaurant slated to reopen Tuesday morning, its new owners are hoping the historic culinary destination will finally return to its role as a… Continue reading →

Norwegian Cruise, Port of NOLA reach 4-year deal

Port of New Orleans president and CEO Gary LaGrange says Norwegian Cruise Line will keep at least one cruise ship sailing from New Orleans for the next four to seven years. The port and Miami-based cruise line signed a contract last week, days before the 2,340-passenger Norwegian Dawn was to arrive. It can carry 322 more passengers… Continue reading →

Gusman asks outside agencies to probe OPP inmate’s death

Advocate staff file photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman.

Sheriff Marlin Gusman has asked outside law enforcement agencies to investigate the death of Willie Lee, an Orleans Parish Prison inmate who died in March after a fight with another inmate. The sheriff’s request came after Coroner Jeffrey Rouse determined that Lee died of “cardiac arrest as a result of an inmate-on-inmate physical altercation.”… Continue reading →

ClearEdge expanding in Baton Rouge relocation from New Orleans

ClearEdge Wholesale Glass is relocating its manufacturing operations from a 14,000-square-foot site in New Orleans to an expanded 41,000-square-foot facility in Baton Rouge. The company will invest $2.65 million for construction and renovation at the Baton Rouge site, owners Brian and Dana LaBorde announced Monday with Gov. Bobby Jindal. ClearEdge said 20 New… Continue reading →

Gumbo Shop employees fight off would-be armed robber

Benny Walker

The last few diners were finishing their meals at the Gumbo Shop on Sunday night when a man wandered into the popular French Quarter restaurant about 10:30 p.m. He brushed past the wait staff, who thought he might want a quick drink, heading out to the patio and up a staircase to a second-floor office where… Continue reading →

New Orleans crime news: Man shot dead Sunday night; driver dies after car flips over Causeway bridge into water

Photo Provided by St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office -- Authorities work the scene where a vehicle traveling South on the Causeway left the travel lane and flipped over the railing around 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014.  Deputies with the Sheriff’s marine division searched the area in boats and located the vehicle a short time later near the draw bridge.  The driver, believed to be the lone occupant, was still in the vehicle when it was recovered.  Fire District 4 personnel extricated the body, which is being turned over to the St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s office for identification and family notification.

The body of a car crash victim was found Sunday inside a vehicle that went over the railing of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway into the water, according to the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office. Divers with the Sheriff’s Office recovered the car Sunday afternoon. The driver, who was believed… Continue reading →

Old favorites and new sandwiches satisfy crowds at Po-Boy Fest

Advocate Photo by VERONICA DOMINACH -- Harold Gaspard helps sells poboys at the Jacques Imo's vendor during the 8th annual Oak-Street Poboy Festival in New Orleans on Sunday, November 23, 2014.

As a line 40 people long extended down Oak Street, hungry patrons waited anxiously while the sandwich slinger repeated a ritual more than 50 years old. He hollowed out the French bread and stuffed it deep with loads of shrimp, smothered in a smooth, buttery sauce.… Continue reading →

New Orleans city council to Marlin Gusman: Take 'any and all necessary steps' to remove juveniles from Orleans Parish Prison

In Louisiana, criminal suspects as young as 14, 15 or 16 can be tried as adults for a range of serious and violent offenses. Ultimately, it is up to district attorneys and judges to decide where their cases should be prosecuted. But last week, policymakers debated whether suspects that youths should also be jailed as though… Continue reading →

‘Speakeasy’-style bar planned for Lower Garden District

Photo provided by Robert Morris, -- Banks McClintock and Julie Simpson plan a European-style speakeasy and wine bar at 1330 Magazine St.

An intimate, European-style “speakeasy” serving wine, cocktails and a few French hors d’oeuvres is planned for a blighted building on Magazine Street in the Lower Garden District. Banks McClintock and his wife, Julie Simpson, bought the building at 1330 Magazine St. in 2003. Built in the 1850s, the building has a long history as a business,… Continue reading →