Vermilion Parish teen arrested in cattle rustling case

A Vermilion Parish juvenile has been arrested on suspicion he stole 24 cows from a Vermilion Parish cattleman, the state Department of Agriculture and Forestry said.

Agriculture officials said the 16-year-old suspect, who was not identified, was found at a stockyard trying to load seven stolen heifer calves and hide them elsewhere.

The calves were returned to the owner.

Agriculture officials said the stockyard manager, around the same time, found 17 cows in a back pen that were not supposed to be there.

The manager contacted an inspector with the Agriculture Department, who determined the cows were stolen from the same Vermilion Parish cattleman.

“Fortunately, these cattle were properly branded and that helped the brand inspector and the cattleman identify the stolen property easily,” Commissioner Mike Strain said in a news release.

Authorities said the juvenile was brought to the Vermilion Parish Sheriff’s Office, where he admitted he stole the cattle.

He was later released from the juvenile detention center after posting bail of $2,500.

The owner of the cattle estimated the value of his stolen cattle at $26,400, according to the news release.