Scales of Justice

Walter P. Reed
District Attorney

22nd Judicial District
News Releases

Seal of the District Attorney

October 13, 2014

MEN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF ARMED ROBBERY
--SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERMS--

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Regis Chatman, 22 of Covington, and Jamaal Calloway, 19 of New Orleans, were found guilty as charged in separate trials in August and were sentenced today by 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Judge Burris sentenced Calloway as a career criminal to 75 years in prison for armed robbery and 40 years in prison for felon possessing a firearm and Chatman to 40 years in prison for armed robbery with a firearm.  Judge Burris ordered Calloway’s sentences to be served concurrently.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s  cases.
Chatman and Calloway were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Sheriff’s Department after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Abita.  The Victim was returning to a shelter where he had left his motorcycle during a rainstorm when the robbers approached him from behind.  Chatman brandished a gun while the robbers escaped with about $500.00.  Calloway took the gun from Chatman and fired shots in the air as the two were fleeing the scene.
Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Felon possessing a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 20 years.   Calloway was found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for simple robbery and simple burglary in 2012.      


October 9, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED
FOR POSSESSION WITH INTENT TO DISTRIBUTE DRUGS
 
----400 GRAMS OF COCAINE AND 200 GRAMS OF MARIJUANA----

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Bernard Terrell Forrest, 33 of Angie, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, October 9th, 2014, of possession with intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 45 minutes before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Forrest was arrested in October 2012 by the Louisiana State Police after a traffic stop on Interstate 12 near exit 57.  State Troopers developed information that revealed Forrest was transporting drugs from Houston.  Surveillance provided Troopers with the defendants travel plans and Forrest was pulled over for traffic violations as he entered St. Tammany Parish.  Troopers searched the rental truck and found over 400 grams of cocaine and over 200 grams of marijuana.   

Judge Burris will sentence Forrest on January 8th, 2015.  Forrest could be sentenced to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Forrest has 3 prior convictions for distribution of cocaine in 2007.  Forrest also has a prior conviction for battery on a police officer in 2007 and possession of cocaine in 2005.

October 8, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR POSSESSION OF
SCHEDULE II DRUGS

9 PRIOR CONVICTIONS

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Justin Granger Smith, 38 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, October 2, 2014, of possession of methamphetamine.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Batholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Smith and Joseph Rizzuto, 38 of Slidell, were arrested in May 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a traffic stop near Slidell. Deputies were conducting surveillance of Smith’s mobile home after receiving complaints from citizens.  Smith and Rizzuto spotted the Deputies while leaving the residence and stopped to question why they were there. Deputies smelled the odor of burnt marijuana and made a traffic stop after the two had driven away.  A search of their truck revealed drug paraphernalia and methamphetamine

Rizzuto is awaiting trial on October 27, 2014, for possession of methamphetamine.

Judge Coady will sentence Smith on November 6, 2014.  Smith could be sentenced from 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal. Smith has prior convictions in Arkansas for 3 counts of theft by receiving in 2002, felon possessing a firearm in 1999 and 1998, aggravated assault in 1999 and 1998, criminal mischief in the first degree in 1998, and unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in St Tammany Parish in 1994.

Possession of methamphetamine is punishable by imprisonment for up to 5 years. 

October 8, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF NEGLIGENT HOMICIDE

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Charles Toon, 36 of Foxworth, Mississippi, was found guilty Thursday, October 2, 2014, of negligent homicide and driving while intoxicated.  Toon had been charged with vehicular homicide before the Jury found him guilty of the responsive verdict.  The twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 45 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Toon was arrested in December 2013 by the Louisiana State Police after an adult male victim was killed in an auto crash near Franklinton.  The defendant crossed the center line ran head on into the victim’s vehicle.  A passenger in the defendant’s car suffered moderate injuries.  Toon was found to be impaired.

Judge Gardner will sentence Toon on October 10, 2014.  Negligent homicide is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.  First offense driving while intoxicated is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 6 months. 

October 3, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Stanley Lane, 56 of Slidell, was found guilty Thursday, October 2, 2014, of molestation of a juvenile under age 13.   A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 15 minutes before returning the guilty as charged verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.   Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
Lane was arrested in October 2013 by the Slidell Police Department after a child was sexually abused in 2010.   The victim was 7 years old as the time of the abuse.  The victim learned from a school video that this was sex abuse.  The victim told a family member who told the victim’s father.  Two previous victims testified that they were also sexually abused by the defendant.
Judge Knight will sentence Lane on October 16, 2014.  Molestation of a juvenile under age 13 is punishable by imprisonment for not than less than 25 nor more than 99 years. 

September 15, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Caleb Hughes, 28 of Slidell, pled guilty today to forcible rape, sexual battery and failure to register as a sex offender.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Hughes as a career criminal to 40 years in prison for forcible rape, 10 years in prison for sexual battery.  Judge Childress also sentenced Hughes to 5 years in prison for failure to register as a sex offender and ordered the sentences to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
Hughes was arrested in January 2014 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor victim was sexually abused.  Hughes and the victim were friends before the sexual abuse began.  Hughes threatened physical harm if the victim didn’t continue to comply with the sexual abuse.  The victim ultimately told a parent.
Hughes was sentenced as a multiple offender due to a prior conviction for rape of a child with force in Massachusetts in 2005.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment from 5 to 40 years.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.  Failure to register as a sex offender is punishable by imprisonment from 2 to 10 years. 

August 21, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

---MAN SENTENCED AS HABITUAL OFFENDER---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Hoover, 36 of Covington, pled guilty as charged today to operating a methamphetamine laboratory.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz sentenced Hoover to 30 years in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Hoover was arrested in March 2014 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Task Force after a meth lab was located on his property.  The Covington Police Department had received a complaint that methamphetamine was being produced in the City of Covington.  The Task Force and Covington Police proceeded to the address received in the complaint and found the meth lab after a search of the premises.

Judge Swartz sentenced Hoover as a career criminal due to a prior conviction for attempted possession of a firearm by a felon in 2012.  Hoover also has prior convictions for possession of schedule II drugs in 2009 and possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia in 2007.  Operating a meth lab is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 15 years. 

August 21, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Branch, 30 of Slidell, was sentenced to life in prison today by 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.
Judge Hand sentenced Branch as a career criminal to two life sentences to be served concurrently.  Branch has prior convictions for bank fraud in 2010, possession of marijuana in 2007, possession of cocaine in 2005, and theft in 2005.

Branch was found guilty as charged of armed robbery with a firearm and convicted felon possessing a firearm on Tuesday, May 20th, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 1 1/2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 2 day trial.   
Branch, along with Adriena Williams, 37 of Bogalusa, and Bernell Earl, 42 of Bogalusa, were arrested in July 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  Williams called the victim and lured him to her location with a story of car trouble.  The victim was then approached at gunpoint and his personal property was stolen.  The three robbers fled the scene in a black Lincoln sedan.  The victim called 911 and reported the vehicle description helping Deputies stop the getaway car five minutes later on Interstate 10.  A search of the vehicle revealed the victim’s valuables and the guns used in the robbery.
Williams pled guilty to simple robbery on December 9th, 2013, and was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
 Earl was found guilty as charged January 8th, 2014, and was sentenced to life in prison on April 4th, 2014.
 Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Convicted felon possessing a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 20 years. 

August 15, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MEN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF ARMED ROBBERY
--CODEFENDANTS GUILTY IN SEPARATE TRIALS--

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Regis Chatman, 22 of Covington, and Jamaal Calloway, 19 of New Orleans, were found guilty as charged this week in separate trials.  Chatman was found guilty Tuesday August 12, 2014, of armed robbery with a firearm. Calloway was found guilty Thursday August 14, 2014, of armed robbery with a firearm and felon illegally possessing a firearm.  Two twelve member St. Tammany Parish Juries deliberated 1 hour each before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s 2 cases.   
Chatman and Calloway were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Sheriff’s Department after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Abita.  The Victim was returning to a shelter where he had left his motorcycle during a rainstorm when the robbers approached him from behind.  Chatman brandished a gun while the robbers escaped with about $500.00.  Calloway took the gun from Chatman and fired shots in the air as the two were fleeing the scene.
Judge Burris will sentence Chatman and Calloway on October 8th, 2014.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Calloway’s sentence may be enhanced to not less than 66 nor more than 208 years in prison if he is found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for simple robbery and simple burglary in 2012.      

 

August 7, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Randy Jones, 59 of Bogalusa, was found guilty on Wednesday, August 6th, 2014, of attempted sexual battery of a child under age 13.  Jones was initially charged with sexual battery of a child under 13.  The 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Jones was arrested in August 2013 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a female child victim was sexually abused.  Jones was an acquaintance of the victim and invited her on a bike ride where he sexually abused her.  The victim reported the abuse to a family member.

Judge Gardner will sentence Jones on August 20th, 2014.  Attempted sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 49 1/2 years. 


August 1, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED DURING TRIAL
--SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM AS CAREER CRIMINAL—

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Melvin Burton, 48 of Harvey, pled guilty as charged on July 24th, 2014, to aggravated flight from an officer, aggravated obstruction of a highway, theft of goods and possession of heroin.  The trial was in its third day while the Jury was in deliberation when Burton decided to change his plea from not guilty to guilty as charged.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Burton to 20 years in prison for each charge and ordered the sentences to run concurrently.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Burton was sentenced as a career criminal due to convictions in Orleans Parish for simple robbery in 1991 and theft in 1996 and 2010 and also simple escape in Jefferson Parish in 2000.  Burton has been arrested at least 30 times and has been convicted at least 22 times.

Burton along with Freeman Harris, 36, and Alexandra Smith, 33, both of New Orleans, was arrested in April 2014 by the Slidell Police Department after a car chase.  Burton and Harris were observed shoplifting at a local department store but sped away recklessly westbound on I-10 before they could be apprehended.  The Slidell Police Department employed a tactical vehicle intervention to disable the car and cause it to spin out while keeping all traffic clear of the incident.  Heroin was found after a search of the vehicle. 
The 2 codefendants, Freeman Harris, 36, and Alexandra Smith, 33, both of New Orleans, were less involved and both pled guilty as charged previously.  Freeman pled guilty on July 10th, 2014, to theft and possession of heroin on and was sentenced to 4 years in prison on each charge to be served concurrently.  Smith pled guilty on June 17th, 2014 to possession of heroin and was sentenced to 10 years in prison suspended and 5 years probation.
Possession of heroin is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 4 nor more than 10 years.  Aggravated obstruction of a highway is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years.  Aggravated flight from an officer is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years.  Theft of more than $500 but less than $1500 is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years. 


July 18, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCEDAS CAREER CRIMINAL FOR 10 CONVICTIONS
-- Life in Prison Plus 300 Years --

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Beau Ledoux, 21 of Covington, was sentenced as a career criminal by 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady on Thursday, July 17th, 2014.  Ledoux was sentenced to life in prison for each aggravated kidnapping conviction, 65 years in prison for each of four armed robbery convictions and 40 years in prison for attempted armed robbery.  Ledoux had previously been sentenced to life sentences for each aggravated kidnapping, 50 years in prison for each armed robbery and 30 years in prison for attempted armed robbery.  Judge Coady ordered all sentences to run concurrently.

Ledoux was found guilty of these crimes on Thursday, May, 15th, 2014, after a twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial. 
 
Ledoux along with 3 codefendants were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after 4 adult victims and 1 minor victim were held against their will and robbed at gunpoint.  The intruders fled the scene with stolen loot after 2 hours.  The victims were able to get free and call police.  Information from an informant revealed the identity of the robbers.
The 3 codefendants are Jonathan Hudson, 29 of Slidell, Christopher Allo, 35 of Abita Springs, and William Ledoux, 18 of Sun.  Hudson pled guilty as charged July 9th, 2014, and was sentenced to 50 years in prison.  William Ledoux was less involved in the crimes resulting in him pleading guilty as charged to 4 counts of simple robbery on May 30th, 2014, and being sentenced to 7 years in prison, suspended, and 5 years probation.  Allo is awaiting trial on charges of 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm.

Aggravated kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for life.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Attempted armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 7 ½ to 49 ½ years.  Ledoux was sentenced as a career criminal due to a prior conviction for possession of oxycodone in August 2012.

July 15, 2014
PRESS RELEASE

FRANKLINTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES


FRANKLINTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Warren Ciravola, 43 of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, July 10th, 2014, of aggravated rape and aggravated incest.  The Washington Parish Jury deliberated 80 minutes before returning the guilty as charged verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the three day jury trial.

Ciravola was arrested in March 2013 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim told her teacher about the abuse and the defendant was arrested after the Office of Family Services did a welfare check at the defendant’s home. 

Judge Gardner will sentence Ciravola on August 13th, 2014.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 years nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

JULY 14, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED FOR SEX CRIME CONVICTIONS
---ORDERED TO SERVE 25 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kevin Lee Rieckmann, 35 of Slidell, was sentenced today by 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz to a total of 25 years in prison.  Rieckmann was found guilty on May 1st, 2014, by a St. Tammany Parish Jury of 3 counts of molestation of a juvenile, 2 counts of computer aided solicitation of a minor, 2 counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile and 1 count of attempted sexual battery.  The 12 member Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to Judge Swartz.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Rieckmann was arrested in August 2012 by the Slidell Police Department in conjunction with the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office after 5 minor female victims were sexually abused.  Two of the victims ultimately disclosed the sexual abuse to their parents.  The victims’ ages ranged from 14 to 16 years of age at the time the abuse occurred from November 2011 to July 2012.  Reickmann used email and text to lure victims into inappropriate sexual relationships.   

The 25 year prison sentence resulted from 10 years in prison concurrent for each of the 3 counts of molestation of a juvenile, 10 years in prison concurrent for each of the 2 counts of computer aided solicitation of a minor, 5 years in prison for attempted sexual battery and 7 years in prison concurrent for each of the 2 counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile. 

Judge Swartz ordered the 10 years for molestation, the 10 years for computer aided solicitation and the 5 years for attempted sexual battery to be served consecutively for a total of 25 years.  

Molestation of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than ten years.  Computer aided solicitation of a minor is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than ten years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 7 years.  Attempted sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.        


July 11, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO 10 CHARGES
--SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM—

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jonathan Hudson, 29 of Slidell, pled guilty to 5 counts of armed robbery with a firearm and 5 counts of attempted aggravated kidnapping on Wednesday, July 9th, 2014.  The trial was in its third day when Hudson decided to change his plea from not guilty to guilty.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Hudson to 60 years in prison for each count of armed robbery and 50 years in prison for each count of attempted aggravated kidnapping.  Judge Coady ordered all the sentences to run concurrently.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Hudson along with 3 codefendants were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after 4 adult victims and 1 minor victim were held against their will and robbed at gunpoint.  The victims were tied together in their Covington area home before the robbers fled the scene with the stolen loot after 2 hours.  The victims were able to get free and call police.  Information from an informant revealed the identity of the robbers.
The 3 codefendants are Beaux Ledoux, 21 of Covington, Christopher Allo, 35 of Abita Springs, and William Ledoux, 18 of Sun. Beau Ledoux was found guilty of 5 counts of aggravated kidnapping, 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm and 1 count of attempted aggravated kidnapping on May 15th, 2014.  Judge Coady sentenced Beau Ledoux to life in prison on June 19th, 2014.
William Ledoux was less involved in the crimes resulting in him pleading guilty as charged to 4 counts of simple robbery on May 30th, 2014, and being sentenced to 7 years in prison, suspended, and 5 years probation.  Allo is awaiting trial on charges of 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm. 
Attempted aggravated kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years. 
    

July 2, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

VANDERHOFF SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Stephen Vanderhoff Jr., 27 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, April 24th, 2014, of 2 counts distribution of methadone.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato today sentenced Vanderhoff to 49 years in prison on each charge as a career criminal.  Judge Penzato ordered the sentences to be served concurrently.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case for the two day trial. .

Vanderhoff was arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he was observed selling drugs in July 2009.  Deputies obtained information from confidential sources that Vanderhoff was selling methadone.  Deputies and confidential informants conducted a drug buy that resulted in a warrant for the defendant’s arrest.  Vanderhoff was arrested on the 2009 warrant after it was learned that he was a prisoner in the St. Bernard Jail.

Vanderhoff has been arrested at least ten times over the past 10 years and has prior convictions for theft twice, possession of hydrocodone, and simple burglary in 2005 and simple burglary and attempted simple burglary in 2010.

Distribution of methadone is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 30 years.  Vanderhoff faced a minimum of 30 years in prison as a four time offender.
          

June 23, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED FOR 10 CONVICTIONS
-- Life in Prison --
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Beau Ledoux, 21 of Covington, was sentenced by 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady on June 19h, 2014, to life in prison for each aggravated kidnapping conviction, 55 years in prison for each armed robbery conviction and 30 years in prison for attempted armed robbery.  Judge Coady ordered all sentences to run concurrently. 
Ledoux was found guilty of 5 counts of aggravated kidnapping, 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm, and 1 count of attempted armed robbery with a firearm on Thursday, May, 15th, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to Judge Coady.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial.  
Ledoux along with 3 codefendants were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after 4 adult victims and 1 minor victim were held against their will and robbed at gunpoint.  The victims were tied together in their Covington area home with zip ties and rope while the perpetrators roamed the house looking for valuables.  The intruders wore masks and gloves to avoid being identified and fled the scene with stolen loot after 2 hours.  The victims were able to get free and call police.  Information from an informant revealed the identity of the robbers.
The 3 codefendants are Jonathan Hudson, 29 of Slidell, Christopher Allo, 35 of Abita Springs, and William Ledoux, 18 of Sun.  Hudson is charged with 5 counts of aggravated kidnapping and 5 counts of armed robbery with a firearm.  Allo and William Ledoux are charged with 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm.  All three are awaiting trial.
Aggravated kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for life.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Attempted armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 7 ½ to 49 ½ years.


June 11, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO THEFT

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shawn Singleton, 54 of Baton Rouge, has pled guilty as charged to theft over $1500 on Monday, June 9th, 2014.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea and ordered a presentence investigation.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Batholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Singleton and Angela Lyle, 46 of Biloxi, Mississippi, were arrested in November 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after they were accused of stealing victims’ money.  Singleton and Lyle worked for a mortgage and credit repair business and received thousands of dollars from dozens of victims.  The money was paid by the victims hoping to improve their mortgage and credit problems.  Singleton pled guilty to keeping the money instead of forwarding the payments appropriately.      
Lyle is awaiting trial for theft over $1500.
Judge Coady will sentence Singleton after the presentence investigation is completed.  Theft over $1500 is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years. 

June 11, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Traci Beaucoudray 35 of Slidell, pled guilty to indecent behavior with a juvenile and attempted computer aided solicitation of a minor under 17 on Monday June 9th, 2014.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea and ordered a presentence investigation.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Batholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
Beaucoudray was arrested in June 2013 by the Slidell Police Department after sexually explicit texts were found on a juvenile victims’s telephone.  The mother of the victim saw the texts on her minor daughter’s phone and contacted police.
Judge Coady will sentence Beaucoudray on July 18th, 2014.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than seven years.  Attempted computer aided solicitation of a minor is punishable by imprisonment from two and a half years to five years in prison.

May 27, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Walter Fairley, 36 of Collins, Mississippi, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery with a firearm on Thursday, May 22nd, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Fairley was arrested in November 2013 by the Slidell Police Department after a local bank teller was robbed at gunpoint.  The robber entered the bank and slipped a note to the teller threatening gun violence if she did not put money in a bag.  The defendant fled the bank before a dye pack exploded in the money bag causing witnesses at local businesses to notice the apparent robbery.  The witnesses were able to described Fairley’s clothing, vehicle, and license plate.  Police arrested him a short time later and a search of his vehicle revealed a 22 caliber pistol.
Judge Hand will sentence Fairley on Thursday, May 29th, 2014.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years. 

May 21, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY 
WITH A FIREARM
---Could Face Life in Prison---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Branch, 30 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery with a firearm and convicted felon possessing a firearm on Tuesday, May 20th, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 1 1/2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 2 day trial.   
Branch, along with Adriena Williams, 37 of Bogalusa, and Bernell Earl, 42 of Bogalusa, were arrested in July 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  Williams called the victim and lured him to her location with a story of car trouble.  The victim was then approached at gunpoint and his personal property was stolen.  The three robbers fled the scene in a black Lincoln sedan.  The victim called 911 and reported the vehicle description helping Deputies stop the getaway car five minutes later on Interstate 10.  A search of the vehicle revealed the victim’s valuables and the guns used in the robbery.
Williams pled guilty to simple robbery on December 9th, 2013, and was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
 Earl was found guilty as charged January 8th, 2014, and was sentenced to life in prison on April 4th, 2014.
Judge Hand will sentence Branch after a hearing on Friday, May 23rd 2014, to determine if Branch is a career criminal.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  Convicted felon possessing a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 20 years.  Branch could face life in prison if found to a career criminal.  Branch has prior convictions for bank fraud in 2010, possession of marijuana in 2007, possession of cocaine in 2005, and theft in 2005. 

May 20, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF ARMED ROBBERY

FRANKLINTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shoneray O’Haver, 31 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery with a firearm and a convicted felon possessing a firearm on Wednesday, May 14th, 2014.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for an hour before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
O’Haver was arrested in July 2013 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a local bank teller was robbed at gunpoint.  O’Haver wore a mask and gloves as he entered the bank and fled on foot with about $3000.  Witnesses described O’Haver’s clothing before he was spotted unmasked leaving a nearby wooded area.  O’Haver was arrested while hiding in an abandoned house in the neighborhood.  The bag of the money, mask, gloves, weapon, and clothes were found discarded on the roof. 
Judge Gardner will sentence O’Haver on Tuesday, May 27th, 2014.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 104 years.  A convicted felon possessing a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 20 years. 

May 16, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER
---20 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Brandon Seagraves, 26 of Slidell, pled guilty on Friday, May 16th, 2014, to manslaughter and 2 counts of distribution of schedule III drugs.  Seagraves was initially charged with 2nd degree murder before pleading guilty to manslaughter.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato sentenced Seagraves to 20 years in prison for manslaughter as a career criminal and 5 years in prison for each drug distribution charge.  Judge Penzato ordered the sentences to run concurrently.  Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and John Alford and were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The victim family expressed extreme satisfaction with the plea agreement.

Seagraves was arrested in June 2012 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult male victim died of a drug overdose.  Seagraves sold the schedule III drug suboxone to the victim.

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 40 years.  Distribution of schedule III drugs is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.  Seagraves was sentenced as a career criminal. 

May 16, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 10 CHARGES
--Mandatory Life in Prison—

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Beau Ledoux, 21 of Covington, was found guilty of 5 counts of aggravated kidnapping, 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm, and 1 count of attempted armed robbery with a firearm on Thursday, May, 15th, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial.   
Beau Ledoux along with 3 codefendants were arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after 4 adult victims and 1 minor victim were held against their will and robbed at gunpoint.  The victims were tied together in their Covington area home with zip ties and rope while the perpetrators roamed the house looking for valuables.  The intruders wore masks and gloves to avoid being identified and fled the scene with stolen loot after 2 hours.  The victims were able to get free and call police.  Information from an informant revealed the identity of the robbers.
The 3 codefendants are Jonathan Hudson, 29 of Slidell, Christopher Allo, 35 of Abita Springs, and William Ledoux, 18 of Sun.  Hudson is charged with 5 counts of aggravated kidnapping and 5 counts of armed robbery with a firearm.  Allo and William Ledoux are charged with 4 counts of armed robbery with a firearm.  All three are awaiting trial.
Judge Coady will sentence Beau Ledoux on June 18th, 2014.  Aggravated kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for life.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years.  Attempted armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 7 ½ to 49 ½ years.

May 13, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jesse Stowe, 22 of Ponchatoula, pled guilty Monday, May 12th, 2014, to attempted 1st degree murder and armed robbery.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia sentenced Stowe to 25 years in prison on each charge to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Stowe was arrested in June 2013 by the Mandeville Police Department after a man was shot during a robbery.  Stowe shot the adult male victim in the head and left him on the St. Tammany Trace.  Stowe took the victim’s phone and drugs and fled the scene.  The victim was discovered by a Ranger and transported to the hospital with a head wound.  The victim gave police information that led to Stowe’s arrest the next day. 
Lacy Bryant, 23 of Ponchatoula and Stowe’s girlfriend, helped Stowe by hiding the gun used in the crimes.  Bryant pled guilty as charged in October 2013 to obstruction of justice and two counts of accessory after the fact.  Bryant was sentenced to 3 years in prison suspended and 3 years probation.  Judge Garcia ordered these sentences to be served concurrently.
Attempted 1st degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.   

May 8, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE AND
TWO COUNTS OF AGGRAVATED INCEST
--SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joel Alden Sullivan, 41 of Covington, was sentenced today by 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz to life plus 75 years in prison.  Sullivan was sentenced to life in prison for aggravated rape and 75 years in prison for each count of aggravated incest.  Judge Swartz ordered the two 75 year sentences for aggravated incest to be served concurrently.  Judge Swartz found Sullivan to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for carnal knowledge in 2008 and possession of cocaine in 2004. 
 
Sullivan was found guilty of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated incest by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury on Wednesday, February 26th 2014.  The Jury deliberated for 2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz after the 3 day trial.  Assistant District Attorneys Nick Noriea, Jr. and Jason Cuccia were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Sullivan was arrested in March 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two girls and a boy were sexually abused.  One of the girls, who was abused in 2007-2008 when she was 13, told her foster mom who told police.  The other girl was abused from 2006-2008 when she was 10-11 years old.  The boy was abused from 2002-2005 when he was 10-13 years old.             

Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Aggravated incest where the victim is under the age of 13 years is punishable by imprisonment from 25 to 99 years.

May 6, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Christopher Garrott, 42 of Pearl River, was sentenced today by 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress to 25 years in prison.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated on Wednesday, March 26th 2014, for an hour after a two day trial before returning the guilty verdict.  Garrott was charged with simple burglary while the jury convicted him on the responsive verdict of attempted simple burglary. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Garrott was arrested in October 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after Deputies responded to a possible burglary in progress near Abita Springs.  Garrott was observed running from the scene and was apprehended shortly after while hiding in the nearby woods. 
Garrott was sentenced as a career criminal having been arrested at least 12 times since 1988 and being sentenced to 13 ½ years in prison. 
Garrott was sentenced in1989 to 7 ½ years in prison for 10 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  Garrott was sentenced in 1999 to 1 year in prison for illegal possession of stolen property.  Garrott was sentenced to 5 years in prison in 2010 for each of five convictions to be served concurrently.  Those convictions were for possession of hydrocodone, methamphetamine, and MDMA, as well as distribution of marijuana and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.    

May 5, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CHARGES

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kevin Lee Rieckmann, 35 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, May 1st, 2014, of 3 counts of molestation of a juvenile, 2 counts of computer aided solicitation of a minor, 2 counts indecent behavior with a juvenile, and attempted sexual battery.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Rieckmann was arrested in August 2012 by the Slidell Police Department in conjunction with the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office after 5 minor female victims were sexually abused.  Two of the victims ultimately disclosed the sexual abuse to their parents.  The victims’ ages ranged from 14 to 16 years of age at the time the abuse occurred from November 2011 to July 2012.  Reickmann used email and text to lure victims into inappropriate sexual relationships.   

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “the internet is a wonderful information and educational tool, but it has a dark side.  Parents must be vigilant to protect their children from the horrible information that can be brought into their homes.”  Reed concluded.

Judge Swartz will sentence Rieckmann on July 14th, 2014.  Molestation of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than ten years.  Computer aided solicitation of a minor is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than ten years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 7 years.  Attempted sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.        

April 25, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR DRUGS

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Stephen Vanderhoff Jr., 27 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, August 24th, 2014, of distribution of methadone.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case for the two day trial. .

Vanderhoff was arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he was observed selling drugs in July 2009.  Deputies obtained information from confidential sources that Vanderhoff was selling methadone.  Deputies and confidential informants conducted a drug buy that resulted in a warrant for the defendant’s arrest.  Vanderhoff was arrested on the 2009 warrant after it was learned that he was a prisoner in the St. Bernard Jail.

Vanderhoff has been arrested at least ten times over the past 10 years and has prior convictions for theft twice, possession of hydrocodone, and simple burglary in 2005 and simple burglary and attempted simple burglary in 2010.

Judge Penzato will sentence Vanderhoff on May 8, 2014.  Distribution of methadone is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 30 years.  Vanderhoff faces a minimum of  30 years in prison if found to be a career criminal. 
          

April 22, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Schultz, 24 of Madisonville, pled guilty as charged today to 4 counts of sexual battery of victim’s under 13 years of age.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected and two witnesses had testified before Shultz’s guilty as charged plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Judge Penzato sentenced Schultz to 50 years in prison on each count to run concurrently. 

Schultz was arrested in April 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two girls, 6 and 8 years of age, were sexually abused.   Shultz pled guilty to 2 counts of sexual battery of each victim.  The 6 year old victim was 5 years old when she was abused in 2013.  She immediately told her mother about the abuse who called the police.  The 8 year old victim was 6 years old when she was abused in 2012.  She explained that she had been abused by the defendant after the first child disclosed her abuse.

Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  However, Schultz was found to be a habitual offender due to a prior conviction in Orleans Parish in 2008 resulting in a sentencing range from 49 ½ to 198 years.   

April 22, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE
AND SECOND DEGREE KIDNAPPING

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jimmy Woodrow Magee, 42 of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, April 17th, 2014, of forcible rape and second degree kidnapping.  The 12 member Washington Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 2 day trial.

Magee was arrested in August 2012 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was held against her will and sexually abused.  Magee and the victim were together at Magee’s home when Magee began beating her.  Magee then forced himself upon her sexually and would not let her leave.  The victim was able to escape after Magee fell asleep. 

Judge Gardner will sentence Magee on April 28th, 2014.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment from 5 to 40 years.  Second degree kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment from 5 to 40 years. 

 

April 21, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CHARGES
---SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Bryan Burrows, 49 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014, to forcible rape, indecent behavior with a juvenile and two counts of pornography involving juveniles.  Burrows
was originally charged with aggravated rape before he pled guilty to forcible rape.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress sentenced Burrows to a total of 50 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney John Alford was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Burrows was sentenced to 40 years in prison for forcible rape, 10 years in prison consecutive for indecent behavior with a juvenile, and 10 years in prison concurrent for each count of pornography involving juveniles.

Burrows and Jeffrey Barry Melvin, 34 of Slidell, were arrested in July 2012 by the Slidell Police Department after two brothers under 13 were sexually abused.  The boys were 12 and 9 at the time of the abuse in 2012.  The victims Mom caught her 12 year old son allegedly being abused by Melvin.  The 12 year old victim then reported to his mom the sex abuse of both he and his younger brother by Burrows and the police were called.

Melvin is awaiting trial on aggravated rape charges but was found incompetent to proceed in October 2012.              

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Abuse of the young and innocent is a terrible blight on our society.  We hope these victims can learn to cope with these terrible crimes,” Reed concluded.

Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 5 nor more than 40 years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile under 13 is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 25 years.  Pornography involving juveniles under 13 is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years.     

 

April 21, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Ard, 23 of Folsom, pled guilty as charged to armed robbery with a firearm on Monday, April 14th, 2014, after a St. Tammany Jury was selected.  22nd Judicial District Martin Coady sentenced Ard to 25 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
Ard was arrested in July 2013 by the Folsom Police Department after a female adult employee at a local business was robbed at gunpoint.  Ard was wearing a ski mask and brandished a shotgun as he robbed the employee and fled on foot into a nearby wooded area.  Folsom police and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office Canine Unit pursued the robber who was apprehended a short time later walking along the highway.  The grocery bag and clothes used by Ard were found in the woods. 
The victim supported the plea agreement and was in court as Ard pled guilty and was sentenced.  
Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years. 

April 9, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Keefer Lamar Eaglin, 34 of Slidell, was sentenced to 80 years in prison as a career criminal on March 28th, 2014, by 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Gardner found Eaglin to be a career criminal due to Eaglin’s forcible rape conviction in 2013 and other prior convictions.

Eaglin was found guilty as charged of forcible rape on November 21, 2013.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 1 hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Eaglin was arrested in January 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually assaulted.  Eaglin met the victim on the internet and paid for a cab to bring her from outside St. Tammany Parish to his Slidell home.  Eaglin forced the victim to have sex before agreeing to take her home.  The victim escaped at a gas station and called her family and the police.

Eaglin has prior convictions for theft and identity theft in 2009 and possession of cocaine in St. Landry Parish in 1999.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years. 

April 8, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

CAREER CRIMINAL SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Bernell Earl, 42 of Bogalusa, was sentenced to life in prison on April 4, 2014, by 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Earl was found to be a career criminal due to his January 8th conviction for armed robbery with a firearm and his past convictions.

Earl was found guilty as charged on January 8, 2014 for armed robbery with a firearm.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 20 minutes before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 3 day trial.
Earl along with Adriena Williams, 37 of Bogalusa, and William Branch, 29 of Slidell, were arrested in July 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  The three robbers fled the scene in a black Lincoln sedan that Deputies stopped five minutes later on Interstate 10.  A search of the vehicle revealed the victim’s valuables and the guns used in the robbery.
Williams pled guilty to simple robbery on December 9th, 2013 and was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
William Branch, 29 of Slidell, is awaiting trial for armed robbery with a firearm.

Earl has been arrested at least 10 times since 1991 and has 3 prior convictions for simple burglary and one for attempted simple burglary in 2000.  Earl also has convictions for illegal possession of stolen things and simple criminal damage to property in 2000 and theft by fraud in 1991.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 15 nor more than 99 years in prison.     

April 8, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gary Fogg, 62 of Slidell, was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Monday, April 7th, 2014, by 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Fogg was found guilty of aggravated incest of a child under 13 years of age on March 21st, 2014.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours after the 3 day trial before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The victim’s mother gave a victim impact statement just prior to the sentencing.

Fogg was arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a girl was sexually abused.  The abuse occurred when the victim was 11 years old.  The victim told her mom about the abuse who called the police.  

Aggravated incest where the victim is under the age of 13 years is punishable by imprisonment from 25 to 99 years.
 

March 28, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ATTEMPTED SIMPLE BURGLARY
--COULD SERVE FROM 20 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON--

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Christopher Garrott, 42 of Pearl River, was found guilty of attempted simple burglary on Wednesday, March 26th, 2014.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour after a two day trial before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress.  Garrott was charged with simple burglary while the jury convicted him on the responsive verdict. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Garrott was arrested in October 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after Deputies responded to a possible burglary in progress near Abita Springs.  Garrott was observed running from the scene and was apprehended shortly after while hiding in the nearby woods. 
Judge Childress will sentence Garrott on April 7, 2014.  Attempted simple burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than six years.  However, Garrott could be sentenced from 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.
Garrott has been arrested at least 12 times since 1988 and has been sentenced to 13 ½ years in prison. 
Garrott was sentenced in1989 to 7 ½ years in prison for 10 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  Garrott was sentenced in 1999 to 1 year in prison for illegal possession of stolen property.  Garrott was sentenced to 5 years in prison in 2010 for each of five convictions to be served concurrently.  Those convictions were for  possession of hydrocodone, methamphetamine, and MDMA, as well as distribution of marijuana and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.    


March 26, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

COVINGTON MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO 4th DWI
---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that George Davis, 31 of Covington, pled guilty as charged Tuesday, March 25th, 2014, to 4th offense DWI. Davis pled guilty after one witness testified before a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress sentenced Davis to 30 years in prison while suspending 15years and adding 5 years probation after Davis’release from prison.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Davis was arrested in December 2013 by the Louisiana State Police while a State Trooper directed traffic around an accident on hwy 36 in Covington.  An eighteen wheeler was stuck on the edge of the roadway and Davis was stuck in traffic slowly edging by the scene.  Davis window was down and the trooper smelled the odor of an alcoholic beverage on his breath.  Further tests revealed Davis to be impaired after he failed the standard field sobriety test and scored over twice the legal limit on the breathalyzer test.
 
District Attorney Walter Reed commented that, “Our community is just that much safer due to this conviction.  Hopefully this long prison sentence will make would be drunk drivers not get behind the wheel,” Reed concluded.

March 24, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED INCEST

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gary Fogg, 62 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Friday, March 21st, 2014, of aggravated incest of a child under 13 years of age.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Fogg was arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a girl was sexually abused.  The abuse occurred when the victim was 11 years old.  The victim told her mom about the abuse who called the police.  

Judge Penzato will sentence Fogg on April 9th, 2014.  Aggravated incest where the victim is under the age of 13 years is punishable by imprisonment from 25 to 99 years. 


February 26, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED INCEST

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Rory Vansant, 52 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Thursday, February 13th, 2014, of aggravated incest.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 4 day trial.

Vansant was arrested in May 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a girl was sexually abused.  The abuse occurred from 2006 to 2007 when the victim was 10 years old.  The victim’s sister told a family member who reported to authorities.  

Judge Burris will sentence Vansant on May 6, 2014.  Aggravated incest where the victim is under the age of 13 years is punishable by imprisonment from 25 to 99 years. 

 

February 27, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE AND
TWO COUNTS OF AGGRAVATED INCEST
--MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joel Alden Sullivan, 41 of Covington, was found guilty as charged on Wednesday, February 26th, 2014, of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated incest.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Assistant District Attorneys Nick Noriea, Jr. and Jason Cuccia were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Sullivan was arrested in March 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two girls and a boy were sexually abused.  One of the girls, who was abused in 2007-2008 when she was 13, told her foster mom who told police.  The other girl was abused from 2006-2008 when she was 10-11 years old.  The boy was abused from 2002-2005 when he was 10-13 years old.             

Judge Swartz will sentence Sullivan after a multiple offender hearing that is scheduled for March 13th, 2014.  Sullivan’s sentence could be enhanced if he is found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for carnal knowledge in 2008 and possession of cocaine in 2004. 

Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Aggravated incest where the victim is under the age of 13 years is punishable by imprisonment from 25 to 99 years.

 

January 22, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR GUN AND DRUGS
--Sentenced to Life in Prison--

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Clifton Daigle, Jr., 46 of Covington, was found guilty as charged on November 14, 2013, for a felon in possession of a firearm and possession of heroin.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight sentenced Daigle on Tuesday, January 21, 2014, to life in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

Daigle was arrested in May 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a traffic stop.  Daigle’s vehicle was swerving in the roadway before it was pulled over by deputies.  A search revealed a syringe and spoon with heroin residue and a shotgun behind the seat

District Attorney Reed commented, “I sadly realized a few years ago that heroin usage was on the rise.  Great work by deputies and my office to stop this violent drug abuser and remove him from our society.” Reed concluded.

Daigle was sentenced as a career criminal to life in prison due to convictions in St. Tammany Parish for felon in possession of a firearm and possession of heroin in 2013, and simple robbery and possession of oxycodone in 2004.  Daigle has prior convictions in Jefferson Parish for aggravated battery in 1991 and simple robbery in 1984.
 

January 17, 2014

NEWS RELEASE
FIVE BOGALUSA TEENAGERS PLEAD GUILTY IN
ARMED ROBBERY CASE

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jamarcus Harrison, 18, Malik Robinson, 16, Quinterius Moses, 17,  Raynis Bridges, 16, and Rashad Pittman,17,  all of Bogalusa have pled guilty in  22nd Judicial District Court.  Moses pled guilty on August 21st and Harrison pled guilty on September 6th, both in 2013, to two counts of simple robbery. Robinson pled guilty on September 9th, 2013, to simple robbery.  Pittman and Bridges pled guilty January 6th, 2014.  Bridges pled guilty to two counts of armed robbery and aggravated assault.  Pittman pled guilty to two counts of armed robbery and attempted second degree murder.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  The two victims were very helpful and very satisfied with the resolution of the case.   

22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner sentenced Moses and Harrison to a total of 14 years in prison, 7 years on each robbery charge to run consecutively, and 5 years probation.  Robinson was sentenced to 7 years in prison plus 5 years probation.  Judge Gardner sentenced Bridges to 15 years in prison for armed robbery with a firearm and 10 years for aggravated assault to all run concurrently.  Judge Gardner will sentence Pittman on February 13th, 2014.
All five defendants were arrested in May 2013 by the Bogalusa Police Department after two male victims were robbed at gunpoint in unrelated robberies.  The first incident occurred as the group less Robinson robbed a victim of his bicycle.  Pittman deployed a taser on the victim while Bridges shot in the victim’s direction as the victim ran away to call police.  The second incident occurred later that night after the other victim had pulled over with car trouble.  The group including Robinson took the victim’s phone, wallet, and knapsack while Pittman brandished his taser and Bridges revealed his gun.  The victim was able to get away and call police.  Moses and Harrison were arrested a few minutes later and Robinson was arrested later that night.  Bridges and Pittman were arrested the next day.

January 14, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

---FORMER BOGALUSA CITY COURT CLERK ---
PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Helen Cotton, 46 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged on Monday, January 6, 2014, to 6 counts of filing false public records, 8 counts of injuring public records, and 6 counts of theft.  22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner sentenced Cotton to 5 years in prison for the 6 counts of filing false public records and the 8 counts of injuring public records.   Judge Gardner sentenced Cotton to 10 years in prison all suspended with 5 years probation, to be served after Cotton’s release from jail. Cotton must make restitution in the amount of $55,000 during her probation.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Cotton was arrested in March 2013 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after money was found missing at Bogalusa City Court.  Cotton had served as the long time City Court Clerk before her arrest stemming from an investigation by the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office.  The investigation which reviewed court financial records from 2006 to Cotton’s resignation in November 2011, revealed missing money and altered pubic records.

Filing false public records is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.  Injuring a public record is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.  Theft is punishable by imprisonment at for not more than 10 years.

January 9, 2014
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY 
WITH A FIREARM

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Bernell Earl, 42 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery on Wednesday, January 8th, 2014.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 20 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 3 day trial.   
Earl along with Adriena Williams, 37 of Bogalusa, and William Branch, 29 of Slidell, were arrested in July 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  Williams called the victim and lured him to her location with a story of car trouble.  The victim was then approached at gunpoint and his personal property was stolen.  The three robbers fled the scene in a black Lincoln sedan.  The victim called 911 and reported the vehicle description helping Deputies stop the getaway car five minutes later on Interstate 10.  A search of the vehicle revealed the victim’s valuables and the guns used in the robbery.
Williams pled guilty to simple robbery on December 9th, 2013 and was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
William Branch, 29 of Slidell, is awaiting trial for armed robbery with a firearm.
Judge Hand will sentence Earl on February 20th, 2014.  Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years.  Earl could face life in prison if found to a career criminal.  Earl has 3 prior convictions for simple burglary and one prior conviction for attempted simple burglary all in 2000.   

 

January 7, 2014

ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY JOHN ALFORD IS PRESENTED WITH THE FIRST “ST. SLAMMANY” AWARD

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed has established the “St. Slammany” award to recognize the outstanding prosecution achievement of one of his Assistant District Attorneys.  This first award is presented to Assistant District Attorney John Alford.

Alford is the son of long-time trial attorney Bill Alford and graduated from Covington’s St. Paul High School in 2000.  John then graduated from LSU in 2004 and from Mississippi College School of Law in 2008.  John served as an Assistant District Attorney in Orleans Parish for five years.

District Attorney Reed commented, “I am very proud of all my Assistant District Attorneys and this year to recognize our newest ADA for this first “St. Slammany” award.  John hasn’t been here long but has made a strong prosecution impact.  The apple did not fall far from the tree,” Reed concluded.

This award is presented each year to an Assistant District Attorney who is eager to try felony criminal cases before a jury especially to prosecute career criminal and habitual offenders.  This ADA will exhibit command and control in the courtroom, a great work ethic in the preparation of cases for trial, and the ability to communicate with the Court, the public and co-workers in order to make our communities as safe as possible.
 

December 9, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Eric Townsend, 26 of Franklinton, pled guilty to manslaughter on Thursday, December 5th, 2013 after 4 days of trial.  Townsend was initially charged with first degree murder no death penalty and chose to withdraw his previous plea and plead guilty to manslaughter.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Hopkins to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorneys Ken Dohre and Lewis Murray were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Townsend and an alleged accomplice, Jeremy Wilson, 26 of Franklinton, were arrested in June 2009 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after two people were murdered in March 2008.  Townsend and the accomplice went to the victims’ home in rural Washington Parish.  The victims were at home at the time and were murdered.  The home was burned to the ground with the victims’ bodies inside. 

Wilson is awaiting trial on first degree murder charges.

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years.


December 4, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John Riley, 69 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged today, December 4th, 2013, of 2 counts of sexual battery and indecent behavior with a juvenile victim under age 13.  The 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 35 minutes before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Riley was arrested in July 2012 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a minor male victim was sexually abused.  Riley befriended the 11 year-old victim in 2007 and paid him for odd jobs.  Riley abused the victim while he stayed overnight at Riley’s home.  The victim moved to another state at age 13 and the sexual abuse was revealed while the victim was in counseling.
 
Judge Gardner will sentence Riley on January 13, 2014.  Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  Indecent behavior with juveniles under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 25 years.

November 25, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Keefer Lamar Eaglin, 34 of Slidell, was found guilty of forcible rape on Thursday, November 21, 2013.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 1 hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Eaglin was arrested in January 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually assaulted.  Eaglin met the victim on the internet and paid for a cab to bring her from outside St. Tammany Parish to his Slidell home.  Eaglin forced the victim to have sex before agreeing to take her home.  The victim escaped at a gas station and called her family and the police.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “This case illustrates how easily young people can be influenced.  We must be careful to monitor the effects of social media in all our lives.”    

Judge Gardner will sentence Eaglin on January 3, 2013.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years. 

November 8, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER
--COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON—

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Lafelix Miller, 31 of Bogalusa, was found guilty of manslaughter on Thursday, November 7th, 2013.  Miller was initially charged with second degree murder while the jury found him guilty of the responsive charge.  The twelve member Washington Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorney John Alford was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Miller was arrested in June 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after he forced his way into a neighbor’s home.  Miller was naked and had blood all over his hands while telling the neighbors he had killed a woman.  Miller’s roommate arrived at their home two hours later and found the deceased adult female victim in their front yard.    

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Removing these violent career criminals from our society is the purpose of the habitual offender law.  This defendant now faces life in prison due to his past criminal record” Reed added.   

Judge Badeaux will sentence Miller on January 17th, 2014.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for up to 40 years.  Miller could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions in 2008 for possession of cocaine, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, possession of methadone, and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.

October 25, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

---MAN FOUND GUILTY OF BURGLARIES---
---COULD FACE LONG PRISON SENTENCE---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Blain Hebert, 25 of Slidell, was found guilty on Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013, of 10 counts of simple burglary and 1 count of attempted simple burglary.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts after deliberating 10 minutes to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris after the 3 day trial.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Hebert was arrested in June 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a burglary at a Slidell area home.  Hebert and an alleged accomplice broke into a home and were identified by residents.  The two fled the scene but were captured soon after at the accomplice’s home.  The subsequent investigation revealed that Hebert had committed many more burglaries and that there was a second alleged accomplice.

The two alleged accomplices are Kenneth Smith, 22, and Amber Leigh Ward, 19, both of Slidell, who are awaiting trial.

Judge Burris will sentence Hebert on December 11, 2013.  Simple burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 12 years.  Attempted simple burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 6 years.  Hebert could face a lengthy prison sentence if found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2008 and 2009.  In addition, Hebert is still facing an aggravated burglary charge and an auto burglary charge.  

 

October 23, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ATTEMPTED FORCIBLE RAPE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Darall Alexander, 57 of Slidell, was found guilty of attempted forcible rape on Tuesday, October 22, 2013.  Alexander was originally charged with attempted aggravated rape before the twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the responsive guilty verdict after 3 hours of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 2 day trial while Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Alexander was arrested in September 2012 by the Mandeville Police Department after an adult female victim was sexually assaulted.  The defendant came to the victim’s home to repair her roof.  Upon completing the work the defendant attacked the victim sexually but fled after the victim fought back and screamed.  Police found DNA evidence linking the defendant to the crime.

Judge Childress will sentence Alexander on October 29, 2013.  Attempted forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 20 years. 

 

October 18, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports  that four individuals in his Child Support Enforcement Division recently received state achievement awards at the Louisiana Support Enforcement Association Annual Training Conference held in Baton Rouge.  Four veteran employees were recognized for their dedication and hard work in the area of child support enforcement.

Joseph Martinez and Jimmy Penton received the “Outstanding Parent Locate Specialist/Investigator in a District Attorney’s Office.”  These two individuals have over fifty combined years of experience locating parents who fail to support their children. 

Helen Draughon, a child support employee for over twenty-five years received the “Outstanding Administrative Professional in a DA Office.”

Diane Sonnier, a thirty year veteran child support employee was recognized as an “Outstanding Establishment/Enforcement Analyst in a DA Office”

Since 2006 the Child Support Division partnering with the State of Louisiana Child Support Agency has collected over $100 million dollars for children. 

 

October 18, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MEN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON
---UNRELATED TRIALS---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia sentenced Charles Daughtry, 61 of Slidell, and Bryan Rucker, 33 of Pontchatoula, to life in prison on Wednesday, October 17th, 2013, after he found both men to be career criminals under Louisiana’s habitual offender statute commonly referred to as the "three strike" law.  Judge Garcia found both men to be “quad bills” meaning each had at least 3 prior convictions in addition to this last one.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noreia, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case. 

Daughtry was found guilty on Wednesday, September 4th, 2013, of two counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and has prior convictions of 3 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1999, 6 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1990, simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and possession of heroin in 1985, and simple burglary in 1976.

Rucker was found guilty on Thursday, September 5th, 2013, of aggravated flight from an officer and aggravated obstruction of a highway and has prior convictions of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and 2 counts of possession of cocaine in 2006, simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2004, and possession of cocaine in 1999.  

 

September 27, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF DOMESTIC ABUSE BATTERY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Lee Killen, 42 of Covington, was found guilty as charged of domestic abuse battery involving strangulation on Thursday, September 26th, 2013. 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the 3 day judge trial before finding the defendant guilty.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Killen was arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was battered.  Killen and the victim were at home when Killen attacked the victim leaving strangulation marks on her neck.  The victim was later able to find her phone and post photos of her strangulation marks on social media.  Killen saw the photos and called police portraying himself as innocent.  Several other prior victims testified at the judge trial of their mistreatment by the defendant.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Domestic violence is a cancer on our society.  This felony conviction should send a clear message that violence is never the answer to disagreements.”  Reed concluded. 
Judge Hand will sentence Killen on October 4th, 2013.  Domestic violence involving strangulation is punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 years.  Killen could face up to 6 years in prison if found to be a multiple offender.  Killen has a prior conviction for unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 2006.

 

September 27, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF DOMESTIC ABUSE BATTERY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Lee Killen, 42 of Covington, was found guilty as charged of domestic abuse battery involving strangulation on Thursday, September 26th, 2013. 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the 3 day judge trial before finding the defendant guilty.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Killen was arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was battered.  Killen and the victim were at home when Killen attacked the victim leaving strangulation marks on her neck.  The victim was later able to find her phone and post photos of her strangulation marks on social media.  Killen saw the photos and called police portraying himself as innocent.  Several other prior victims testified at the judge trial of their mistreatment by the defendant.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Domestic violence is a cancer on our society.  This felony conviction should send a clear message that violence is never the answer to disagreements.”  Reed concluded. 
Judge Hand will sentence Killen on October 4th, 2013.  Domestic violence involving strangulation is punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 years.  Killen could face up to 6 years in prison if found to be a multiple offender.  Killen has a prior conviction for unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 2006. 

 

September 23, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Derrick Jordan, 21 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery on Friday, September 20th, 2013.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Jordan was arrested in January 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a female pizza delivery person was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  Jordan and an accomplice drove up to the victim as she was finishing a delivery and demanded money.  The victim was able to describe the robbers’ vehicle to Officers who arrested Jordan the next day.
The accomplice, Dale Square, 28 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to armed robbery on July 11th, 2013, and was sentenced to 45 years in prison.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “It’s a good day when violent criminals are removed from our society.  These two men will spend most of their lives in prison for traumatizing that pizza driver.” Reed added.
Judge Hand will sentence Jordan on Thursday, September 26th, 2013.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 99 years. 

 

September 5, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MEN FOUND GUILTY IN UNRELATED TRIALS
--BOTH COULD FACE LONG PRISON TERMS—

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Charles Daughtry, 61 of Slidell, and Bryan Rucker, 33 of Pontchatoula, have been found guilty as charged in unrelated trials.  Daughtry was found guilty on Wednesday, September 4th, 2013, of two counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  Rucker was found guilty on Thursday, September 5th, 2013, of aggravated flight from an officer and aggravated obstruction of a highway.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Juries returned the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases.

Daughtry and his accomplice, Robert Klein, 41 of Slidell, were arrested in May 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two Mandeville homes were burglarized.  Daughtry entered the homes while Klein waited outside in a van.  Several items were stolen and Daughtry confessed to the burglaries after being arrested for other crimes.  Klein pled guilty to two counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling on July 25, 2013, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison suspended and 5 years probation.    

Rucker was arrested in April 2013 by the Louisiana State Police after he failed to pull over at a seat belt checkpoint near Covington.  Rucker sped off and wrecked his vehicle a short time later.  Rucker fled on foot leaving an adult female and five-year-old child in the vehicle. 

Judge Garcia will sentence Daughtry and Rucker on September 19, 2013.  Daughtry would be sentenced to prison for not less than one nor more than ten years for simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  However, Daughtry could be sentenced up to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Daughtry has prior convictions of 3 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1999, 6 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1990, simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and possession of heroin in 1985, and simple burglary in 1976. 

Rucker would be sentenced to not more than two years in prison for aggravated flight from an officer and highway obstruction.  However, Rucker could be sentenced up to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Rucker has prior convictions of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and 2 counts of possession of cocaine in 2006, simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2004, and possession of cocaine in 1999.   

August 21, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO 2 LIFE SENTENCES PLUS
228 YEARS

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Demeneca Westbrook, 25 of Angie, was found guilty on Thursday, May 9th, 2013, of 2 counts of aggravated kidnapping, 2 counts of armed robbery, and aggravated burglary.  A 12 person Washington Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner after the 4 day trial.  Judge Gardner sentenced Westbrook on Tuesday, August 21st, 2013, to life in prison for each aggravated kidnapping conviction, 99 years in prison for each armed robbery conviction, and 30 years in prison for aggravated burglary.  Judge Gardner ordered the sentences to be served consecutively.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Westbrook and 4 others were arrested in November 2011 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after two adult male victims were kidnapped, beaten, and robbed at gunpoint.  The getaway driver dropped Westbrook and three others off near where the two victims were sitting outside one of the victim’s home near Varnado.  The robbers beat the two victims while forcing them into the home to open a gun safe.  The getaway car was identified by a neighbor as the robbers fled with the valuables.  The robbers were spotted a short time later and were arrested after a felony traffic stop.  A search of the car revealed some of the items taken in the robbery.    
The getaway car driver, Eric Jackson, 25 of Angie, pled guilty on November 12, 2012, to 2 counts of armed robbery, 2 counts of second degree kidnapping, and aggravated burglary and was sentence to 20 years in prison.  Brian Johnson pled guilty to aggravated burglary and aggravated battery on May 28, 2013, and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.  Robert Morris pled guilty to 2 counts of second degree kidnapping and 2 counts of armed robbery on November 13, 2012, and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.  Joshua Moses, 20 of Angie, has not yet been found competent to stand trial.     
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Our communities just became safer due to the quick work of law enforcement and the hard work of my office.  People who have no regard for other people and their property should have no place in our society, “Reed concluded.     

August 20, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO 1ST DEGREE MURDER
---- MANDATORY LIFE SENTENCE----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gina Scramuzza, 45 of Covington, has been pled guilty as charged to 1st degree murder without the death penalty.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris sentenced Scramuzza to life in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Scramuzza was arrested in February 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after her husband was murdered.  Scramuzza hired an accomplice to kill her husband while the accomplice and two others were burglarizing the Scramuzza’s Covington area home.

The accomplice, Carlos Rodriguez, is awaiting trial for first degree murder.  One of the two others, Erly Montoya, 26 of Kenner, pled guilty to manslaughter and armed robbery on September 27, 2012.  Montoya has not yet been sentenced.  The other man, Luis Rodriguez-Hernandez, was found guilty as charged of first degree murder on January 20th, 2012.  Rodriguez-Hernandez was sentenced to life in prison.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “This is such a tragic case.  I hope people will learn that violence is never the way to settle life’s controversies”, Reed concluded.       

First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

August 20, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Matthew Schmalz, 21 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Wednesday, August 14, 2013, of sexual battery.  The St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and John Alford were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 2 day trial.

Schmalz was arrested in August 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor male victim was sexually abused.  Schmalz gave the victim alcohol before the victim fell asleep.  The victim awoke as Schmalz was committing the sex crime.  The victim became upset and left the scene later telling a friend who called the victim’s family.    

Judge Hand will sentence Thompson on Thursday, September 12, 2013.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

August 14, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX AND DRUG CHARGES AFTER TRIAL BEGINS

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Karl Dixon, 55 of Madisonville, has pled guilty as charged on Tuesday, August 6th, 2013, to two counts of sexual battery, distribution of marijuana to persons under 18 years of age and possession of marijuana.  Brown chose to withdraw his previous plea and plead guilty as charged after the trial had begun and witnesses had testified.  22nd Judicial District Richard Swartz accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Dixon to 20 years in prison for distribution of marijuana, 10 years for each count of sexual battery and 6 months for possession of marijuana.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Dixon was arrested in             October 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after an 11 year old male victim reported the sex abuse to his mother.  The defendant gave the child victim marijuana in order to sexually abuse him.  Further investigation revealed the defendant also sexually abused an adult male victim.  A search of the defendant’s home resulted in the discovery of marijuana.
 
Distribution of marijuana to persons under 18 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 30 years.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more that 10 years.  Possession of marijuana is punishable by up to 6 months in prison.  Judge Swartz ordered the prison sentences to be served concurrently. 

July 24, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE
--SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Nelson Ted Lopez, 23 of Fort Polk, has been found guilty as charged on Friday, July 19th, 2013, of aggravated rape.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 4 day trial.

Lopez was arrested in July 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was raped at knifepoint near Mandeville.  The victim walked outside her work to the dumpster and was attacked by Lopez.  Lopez brandished a knife and choked the victim unconscious while sexually abusing her.  The victim awoke and scratched and clawed Lopez in order to get away to the business next door to call police.  Prosecution evidence included store video, DNA, and a positive identification by the victim.       

Judge Burris sentenced Lopez to life in prison.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

July 23, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY 2 COUNTS OF 1ST DEGREE MURDER
---- MANDATORY LIFE SENTENCE----

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Quentin Watson, 31 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of 2 counts of 1st degree murder without the death penalty.  The twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated 45 minutes Thursday, July 18th, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.  Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Watson was arrested in August 2009 by the Franklinton Police Department after two adult victims were shot and killed in February 2008.  Watson was identified as the shooter after his DNA was linked to the crime scene more than a year later.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “this case traumatized the entire community and the investigation continued for over a year.  Local and State Police are to be commended for their cooperation and tireless efforts in solving these murders.” Reed added.   

Judge Knight will sentence Watson on Wednesday, July 24th, 2013.  First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

July 17, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE MURDER
---- MANDATORY LIFE SENTENCE----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ralph Henley, 63 of Picayune, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated just over two hours on Thursday, July 11th, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Henley was arrested in January 2011 by the Pearl River Police Department after an adult male was shot and killed.  The defendant was meeting with the victim to try and collect money when the defendant shot the victim in the head.  The defendant dismembered the victim’s body as he buried and exhumed it three times trying to avoid discovery. 

Judge Coady immediately sentenced Henley to life in prison after the jury returned the guilty verdict.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

July 16, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dale Square, 28 of Slidell, has pled guilty as charged on Thursday, July 11th, 2013, to armed robbery with a firearm. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury had already been seated and had heard testimony before the defendant decided to change his plea to guilty as charged.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Square to 45 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the of the State’s case.   
Square was arrested in January 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a female pizza delivery person was robbed at gunpoint near Slidell.  Square and an accomplice drove up to the victim as she was finishing a delivery and demanded money.  The victim was able to describe Square’s vehicle to Officers who arrested Square the next day. 
The alleged accomplice, Derek Jordan, 21 of Slidell, is scheduled for trial on armed robbery with a firearm charges on August 12, 2013.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “the victim’s attention to detail and the quick work of the Sheriff’s Office removed two dangerous criminals from our streets. This case reveals how dangerous our world has become and our need to be alert,” Reed concluded.
Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years. 

 

July 16, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Allen Lazaro Thompson, 54 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of 3 counts of aggravated rape, 3 counts of sexual battery on a victim under age 13, 8 counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile under the age of 13, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.  The 12 member Washington Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict on Thursday, July 11th, 2013, to 22nd Judicial District Judge Scott Gardner.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Thompson was arrested in November 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after minor male victims were sexually abused.  The mother of one of the victims reported that her child was sexually abused in October 2011.  The investigation led to 7 other victims stepping forward.

Judge Gardner will sentence Thompson on July 22, 2013.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  Indecent behavior with juveniles under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 25 years.

 

July 8, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ATTEMPTED FIRST DEGREE MURDER
AND AGGRAVATED BATTERY

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Stephen G. Krell, 49 of Liverpool, New York, has been found guilty of attempted first degree murder and aggravated battery.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours on Wednesday night, June 26th, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the two day trial with Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Krell was arrested in March 2013 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a man and his daughter were wounded by gunfire near Covington.  Krell was the estranged boyfriend of the female victim.  Krell fled the scene but turned himself in at State Police Troop L.

District Attorney Walter Reed pointed out, “domestic violence is a cancer on our society.  Fortunately these two victims will survive physically and hopefully they can cope with the emotional trauma they have experienced.”  Reed concluded. 

Judge Childress will sentence Krell on July 30th, 2013.  Attempted first degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than fifty years.  Aggravated battery is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years.

 

June 21, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dominique Djuan Johnson, 19 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged to armed robbery with a firearm on Tuesday, June 18th, 2013.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Johnson to 15 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Johnson was arrested in October 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an armed robbery occurred outside a local Bogalusa business.  The adult female victim was waiting in her car for her husband to close the store when Johnson approached.  Johnson took the victim’s purse and phone at gunpoint and fled.  Anonymous witnesses helped police identify Johnson as the armed robber.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “Good police work and helpful citizens brought this criminal to justice.  Hopefully now this victim will be able to cope with the trauma of this violent crime.” Reed concluded.
Armed robbery with a firearm is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years without  benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence. 

 

May 29, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED FOR SEX CRIMES
---60 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Donald Joseph Dean Winn, 38 of Slidell, has been sentenced to 60 years in prison by 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Judge Hand sentenced Winn on Tuesday, May 28th, 2013, to 60 years in prison for each of four counts of sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age and to 15 years in prison for each of two counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile under 13 years of age.  Judge Hand ordered the sentences to run concurrently and that they be served without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence for 40 years.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Winn was arrested in September 2012 by the Slidell Police Department after 6 minor female children under 13 years of age were sexually abused.  One of the victims told her mother about being sexually abused by the defendant.  Other victims came forward once the incident became public.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “these victims can now feel safe knowing their abuser is gone.  Kids are so innocent and adults must always be on guard against sexual predators, “Reed concluded.

Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 25 years.

 

May 22, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLED GUILTY TO MULITPLE DRUG CHARGES

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kendall Heim, 22 of Slidell, was sentenced to 15 years in prison by 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand on Monday, May 15, 2013.  Heim pled guilty as charged to distribution of heroin; possession with intent to distribute heroin; possession with intent to distribute marijuana; possession, distribution, and or sale of a legend drug without a prescription; possession with intent to distribute schedule one drugs; and possession of marijuana on January 23rd, 2013.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Heim was arrested in July 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he was observed selling heroin.  A search of the defendant’s home revealed marijuana and other illegal drugs and illegal drug distribution supplies. 

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “heroin is one of the most addicting and destructive drugs that people are using.  Great work by the Sheriff’s Office for putting this drug dealer out of business.”  Reed concluded.
    
Judge Hand sentenced Heim to 15 years for distribution of heroin, 15 years for possession with intent to distribute heroin, 15 years for possession with intent to distribute marijuana, 3 years for possession, distribution, and or sale of a legend drug without a prescription, and 2 years for possession of marijuana 2nd offense.  Judge Hand ordered the sentences to be served concurrently.      

 

May 21, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Theresa Hopkins, 32 of Slidell, pled guilty to manslaughter on Monday, May 20th, 2013.  Hopkins was initially charged with second degree murder and chose to withdraw her previous plea and plead guilty to manslaughter.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Hopkins to 35 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Hopkins was arrested in June 2005 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult female victim was found dead.  Hopkins and the victim were friends before an argument over drugs occurred.  Hopkins stabbed the victim causing her death.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, "many homicides are the result of drug related cases.  The illegal drug business is a cancer in our society.  The more drug dealers that are behind bars the safer our communities will be, Reed concluded.

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years.

 

May 20, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIME

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Samuel P. Mccarty, 47 of Covington, pled guilty Monday, May 20th, 2013, to molestation of a juvenile.  22nd Judicial District Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Mccarty to 15 years in prison suspending 12 years and adding 5 years probation upon release.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The victim gave an impact statement that explained her transition over-the-years from victim to survivor.

Mccarty was arrested in September 2010 by the Covington Police Department after a female victim was sexually abused as a minor.   The sexual abuse occurred during and after school between 2002 and 2004 while the defendant was one of the victim’s teachers.  The victim began therapy as an adult to cope with her past and the sex abuse was reported to police.   

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “the actions of this defendant reveal the worst about our world.  We must be on guard every day to help stop child abuse”,   Reed concluded.

Judge Penzato also ordered the defendant to register as a sex offender, stay away from the victim and to have no supervisory relationship with any minor children.  Molestation of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 1 nor more than 15 years.

 

May 17, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES
---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Donald Joseph Dean Winn, 38 of Slidell, pled guilty on Monday, May 13, 2013, to four counts of sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age and two counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile under 13 years of age.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand accepted the guilty plea and set sentencing for May 28th, 2013.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Winn was arrested in September 2012 by the Slidell Police Department after 6 minor female children under 13 years of age were sexually abused.  One of the victims told her mother about being sexually abused by the defendant.  Other victims came forward once the incident became public.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented that, “these victim families can hopefully learn to cope with this traumatic experience.  It’s unthinkable that any adult could mistreat a child.  This defendant will not harm any more kids” Reed concluded.     

Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 25 years.

 

May 3, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE MURDER
---- MANDATORY LIFE SENTENCE----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Roberson, 29 of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 1/2 hours on Thursday, May 2nd, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the four day trial with Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Nick Noriea, Jr. in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Roberson was arrested in August 2011 by the Mandeville Police Department after an adult female was shot and killed.  The victim had inquired as to how to be released from Roberson’s bond which would have sent Roberson back to jail.  Roberson had acquired the murder weapon through a drug deal.

District Attorney Walter Reed pointed out, “it’s great work by the Mandeville Police Department to quickly arrest this defendant and conduct this thorough investigation.  Putting murderers in jail for life makes our community that much safer”, Reed concluded. 

Judge Swartz will sentence Roberson on July 18th, 2013.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

May 6, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED FOR SEX CRIME

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Cameron Williams, 27 of Lacombe, was sentenced on March 19th, 2013, to 20 years in prison for simple rape.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty as charged verdict on Wednesday, March 6th, 2013, to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Williams was arrested in July 2012 by the Mandeville Police Department after an adult female victim was raped.  The sexual abuse occurred after the victim became impaired.  The victim suffered cuts and bruises in addition to the sexual abuse.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “the trauma of sex abuse can never be cured.  However, this long prison sentence will help the victim find some closure”, Reed concluded.
 
Simple rape is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor, for not more than 25 years, without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 


March 19, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO DRUG AND SEX CHARGES

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ricky Seubsanh, 56 of Covington, pled guilty as charged on March 18th, 2013, to distribution of cocaine and several counts of sex crimes with juveniles.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Seubsanh to serve a total of 20 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Seubsanh was arrested in September 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after it was learned that he was trafficking drugs and sexually abusing male juvenile victims at his local Covington restaurant.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented that “We are fortunate to have such great law enforcement agencies in St. Tammany Parish.  The Sherriff’s Office investigation led directly to this defendant pleading guilty as charged.  Another sexual predator and drug salesman is sentenced to many years in prison,” Reed concluded.   .

Distribution of schedule 2 drugs (cocaine) is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years.  Molestation of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 10 years.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 7 years.

March 14, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Graham, 23 of Mandeville, was found guilty Wednesday, March 13th, 2013, of molestation of a juvenile under 13 years of age.  Graham was initially charged with aggravated incest and the jury returned the responsive verdict. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour and a half before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the four day trial.

Graham was arrested in February 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim was between 3 and 5 years of age when the abuse occurred between 2007 and 2009.  The victim told her mother that she was feeling pain from the abuse.  The victim also told her mother that the defendant had abused her.  District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “This crime takes a very traumatic toll on the victim and the victim’s entire family.  This verdict can hopefully put an end to some of that trauma”,   Reed concluded.

Judge Hand will sentence Graham on April 5th, 2013.  Molestation of a juvenile under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.

March 13, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Benson O’Brien, 36 of Mandeville, pled guilty to manslaughter on Wednesday, March 13, 2013.  O’Brien was initially charged with second degree murder and chose to withdraw his previous plea and plead guilty to manslaughter.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris accepted the guilty plea and sentenced O’Brien to 40 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

O’Brien was arrested in May 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was found dead.  O’Brien and the victim had a child together and had ongoing relationship problems.  O’Brien strangled the victim during an apparent argument.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented:" These domestic violence cases, especially when someone is killed, are a cancer on our society. Families and children are torn apart and destroyed because of this violence and it remains with the children forever. The culture of hurting and brutalizing a family member must stop and the criminal justice system must punish the offender severely. "

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years.

 

March 11, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER AND
CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT ARMED ROBBERY

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kendarius Bautista, 21 of Franklinton, has been found guilty of manslaughter and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.  Bautista was initially charged with second degree murder and the Washington Parish Jury returned the responsive verdict of manslaughter.  The twelve member jury deliberated for 2 hours on Wednesday, March 6th, 2013, before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 3 day trial.

Bautista and Delairis Jenkins, 21 of Franklinton, were arrested in September 2009 by the Franklinton Police Department after an adult male victim was killed.   Bautista shot the victim while the victim was being robbed.  Jenkins is scheduled for trial on April 1, 2013, for second degree murder and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.

Judge Badeaux will sentence Bautista on April 15, 2013.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 40 years.  Conspiracy to commit armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for up to 49 1/2 years.

March 11, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Cameron Williams, 27 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of simple rape.  The six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict on Wednesday, March 6th, 2013, to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Williams was arrested in July 2012 by the Mandeville Police Department after an adult female victim was sexually abused.  The victim had become impaired after consuming alcoholic drinks.  Williams forced himself on the victim against her will.  The victim suffered cuts and bruises in addition to the sexual abuse.
 
Judge Garcia will sentence Williams on March 19th, 2013.  Simple rape is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor, for not more than 25 years, without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

March 8, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dishay Elzey, 34 of Franklinton, has been found guilty of manslaughter.  Elzey was initially charged with second degree murder and the St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the responsive verdict of manslaughter.  The twelve member jury deliberated for 4 hours on Thursday, March 7th, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Nick Noriea, Jr. were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial.

Elzey was arrested in January 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim was killed near Mandeville.  Elzey tried to start a fight with the victim earlier in the evening but the victim left the area.  The victim returned and Elzey stabbed him 3 times causing the victim’s death.

Judge Swartz will sentence Elzey on May 14th, 2013.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 40 years.

 

March 5, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

FEBRUARY 26, 2013 WASHINGTON PARISH NON SUPPORT ROUNDUP  

COVINGTON:  District Attorney Walter Reed reports that a non support roundup initiated by the Washington Parish Sheriffs Office last summer has been a great success.  Persons with court orders and who did not pay for the support of their children and those who failed to appear in court were identified for arrest.  On Tuesday morning, February 26th, 2013, 15 teams of 4 officers each started executing arrest warrants in the Bogalusa area and then continued throughout Washington Parish arresting those men and women who had outstanding warrants.

The District Attorney’s Office provided target information to Law Enforcement and obtained the arrest warrants during prosecution of these non support cases.  Officers from The Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office, The Department of Children and Family Services (DFCS) Child Support Arrest Team Members, The Bogalusa Police Department, The Franklinton Police Department, Rayburn Correctional Center, Louisiana Probation and Parole and the Washington Parish Drug Task Force worked together to make 75 arrests and collected over $25,000 for children in need of support. 

District Attorney Reed commented, “law enforcement has taken our arrest warrants and made history.  Not only did they arrest 75 parents who had refused to support their children…..many more people are calling and coming in to catch up their court ordered payments.  This roundup is a big win for the children who desperately need ongoing support,” Reed concluded.

The District Attorney’s Office assisted in collecting almost $19,000,000.00 in child support in 2012.

 

February 27, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO VEHICULAR HOMICIDE

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Desiree Lafleur, 39 of Metairie, has pled guilty as charged to vehicular homicide and 2 counts of vehicular negligent injuring.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected on Monday, February 25th, 2013, before Lafleur chose to withdraw her previous plea and plead guilty as charged on Wednesday, February 27th, 2013.  22nd Judicial District Judge Alison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Lafleur to 17 years in prison for vehicular homicide and 6 months in prison for each vehicular negligent injuring charge to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The vehicular homicide victim’s daughter and brother gave victim impact statements before the defendant was sentenced.  

Lafleur was arrested in December 2010 by the Louisiana State Police after an adult male victim was killed in an auto crash near Slidell.  The deceased victim had parked on an interstate off ramp and exited his car to check for a possible tire problem.  Lafleur’s car struck and killed the victim and then ran into the victim’s car injuring a passenger in both vehicles.  Lafleur was found to be impaired.       
 
Judge Penzato ordered Lafleur to serve 5 of the 17 years without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.  Vehicular homicide is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 30 years.  Vehicular negligent injuring is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 6 months.

 

February 27, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CAREER CRIMINAL

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kym Dillworth, 24 of Covington, pled guilty as charged on February 20th, 2013, to possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress sentenced Dillworth to 25 years in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Dillworth was arrested in July 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he was found to possess a firearm.  Two Deputies observed a speeding vehicle and stopped Dillworth’s car on a local Covington highway.  Dillworth appeared agitated and limped as he exited the vehicle.  Dillworth revealed a gunshot wound and dropped his gun while struggling with a Deputy.  Dillworth threw the gun into a nearby pond where it was quickly recovered by the dive team.

District Attorney Walter Reed explained, “The Louisiana Habitual Offender Law causes repeat offenders to be imprisoned for much longer sentences compared to first offenders.  Getting this criminal off the streets for 25 years means our community is a safer place,” Reed concluded.

A convicted felon possessing a firearm is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 20 years.  Dillworth has prior convictions for second degree battery and possession of schedule II drugs in 2010.

 

February 4, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Cumberland, 26 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape, sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age, and molestation of a juvenile. Cumberland was found not guilty on one charge of sexual battery. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 50 minutes on Friday night, February 1, 2013, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the five day trial.

Cumberland was arrested in November 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after two minor female victims were sexually abused. The victims were between 6 and 8 years of age when the abuse occurred in 2009. One of the victims was taken to the hospital with injuries resulting from the sexual abuse. The other victim disclosed to police that she was also sexually abused by Cumberland.

“These two little girls were very brave in coming to court and testifying,” according to District Attorney Walter Reed. “This defendant can no longer abuse them and will be spending the rest of his life in prison”, Reed concluded.

Judge Burris will sentence Cumberland on February 13th, 2013.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

January 30, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN FOUND GUILTY OF UNLAWFUL MUTILATION AND DISPOSAL OF HUMAN REMAINS AND THEFT

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Debra Fisher, 59 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on Tuesday, January 29th, 2013, of unlawful mutilation and unlawful disposal of human remains and theft. The six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 50 minutes before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz. Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Fisher and Heidi Todd, 45 of Slidell, were arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after someone reported that the elderly male victim, Fisher’s father, had not been seen in the area for some time. Todd pled guilty as charged to all three charges in November 2012 and was sentenced to 3 years in prison. The victim had died in January 2011 and his body was mutilated and compressed into a container and hidden from authorities. Deputies found the remains of the victim after searching the apartment. Fisher and Todd continued to collect monthly social security checks that should have been discontinued upon the victim’s death.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “the defendant resorted to mutilating her father’s body in order to continue getting his money. This case unbelievably reveals what terrible things some people are capable of doing.” Reed concluded.

Fisher will be sentenced on March 22nd, 2013. Unlawful mutilation and unlawful disposal of human remains are punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 years. Theft over $500 is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years.

January 29, 2013
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIME
---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Christopher Lloyd Maricle, 20 of Slidell, pled guilty on Tuesday, January 29th, 2013, to sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age and two counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile. Maricle was initially charged with aggravated rape before pleading guilty to sexual battery. The victims’ families supported the plea agreement. 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Maricle to 25 years in prison for sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age and 7 years in prison for each count of indecent behavior with a juvenile. Judge Penzato ordered the sentences to run concurrently. Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Maricle was arrested in April 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after sexually abusing three minor female victims. The sexual battery victim was 12 years old at the time of the sexual abuse and her older sister reported the abuse to police. The two victims of indecent behavior, who were 15 years old, were discovered during the sexual battery investigation.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented that, “these victims can hopefully get some closure now that this case is resolved. This defendant will serve a long prison sentence due to sexually abusing these girls.” Reed concluded.

Sexual battery of a victim under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years. Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for up to 7 years.

December 13, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE MURDER
---- MANDATORY LIFE SENTENCE----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Felipe Garcia Fuentes, 41 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours on Wednesday, December 12, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the three day trial with Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Fuentes was arrested in November 2011 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult man was killed with a knife.  Fuentes and the victim were having an argument at their apartment that became a fight.  The two were separated and the victim left for another apartment in the housing complex.  Fuentes retrieved a knife and followed the victim to the other apartment and stabbed him to death.

District Attorney Walter Reed pointed out, “how senseless it is for people to resort to deadly violence to resolve a conflict.  This case clearly illustrates the importance of thinking before acting,” Reed concluded.   

Judge Badeaux will sentence Fuentes on January 18, 2013.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

December 12, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO FELONY HIT AND RUN DRIVING

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ryan Lewis, 32 of New Orleans, has pled guilty as charged on Monday, December 10th, 2012, to felony hit and run driving.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Lewis to 5 years in prison suspended, 1 year home incarceration, 5 years supervised probation, a $1500 fine, and to make restitution to the victim’s estate.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The victim’s wife, sister, and a friend gave impassioned victim impact statements prior to the sentencing.  There were 20 other family and friends in attendance to emphasize the great loss that resulted from this crime.

Lewis was arrested in January 2012 by the Mandeville Police Department after leaving the scene of a traffic accident.  Lewis was driving a sport utility vehicle in the left lane when he drifted into the right lane hitting a motorcycle from the rear.  The motorcycle rider was ejected and died of his injuries.  Lewis fled the scene although he turned himself in to Police later that day.

District Attorney Walter Reed remarked, “this case is truly a tragedy….. a good man has died and this defendant is now a convicted felon.  Motorists must be focused only on the road,” Reed concluded.

Felony hit and run driving is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years, a fine of not more than $5000, or both.

 

December 11, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIME
---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Theodore G. Williams, 29 of Covington, pled guilty on Monday, December 10th, 2012, to forcible rape.  Williams was initially charged with aggravated rape before pleading guilty to forcible rape. The victim’s family supported the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz accepted the guilty plea while Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Jason Cuccia were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Williams was arrested in August 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after sexually abusing a minor female victim.  The victim was between 3 and 5 years old at the time of the sexual abuse and told her mom about the abuse during a normal conversation.  The mom called the Sheriff’s Office after listening to her daughter reveal specific details of her sexual abuse.

“The sex abuse of children continues to plague our society with no end in sight.  The Children’s Advocacy Center is to be commended for their work with victims and victim families.  The evidence the CAC provides is very important in these type cases,” stated District Attorney Walter Reed.    

Williams will be sentenced on January 22nd, 2013.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years. 

 

December 6, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO LOOTING
DURING AN EMERGENCY

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Cody Ray Huther, 24 of Mandeville, pled guilty as charged on Tuesday, December 4th, 2012, to looting during an emergency.  22nd Judicial District William Burris accepted the plea and sentenced Huther to 10 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Huther and two others were arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a Covington area home was looted during Hurricane Isaac.  The home owner had evacuated although the housekeeper noticed the back door ajar when she arrived on September 2, 2012.  The housekeeper reported the unlawful entry and a missing safe.  Huther was located after being identified by a gold buying business.
Leah Frosh, 20 of Mandeville, is awaiting trial for looting.  Cameron Lemoine, 24 of Ponchatoula, is awaiting trial for illegal possession of stolen things, accessory after the fact, and theft.
 District Attorney Walter Reed commented on the Huther guilty plea, “it’s good that the penalty for looting during an emergency has been increased.  This crime is especially infuriating to those who are already suffering the effects of a hurricane on their lives.  My office is now working diligently to bring the remaining suspects to justice” Reed concluded.  
Looting during an emergency is punishable by imprisonment from 3 to 15 years. 

 

December 3, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO UNLAWFUL MUTILATION AND DISPOSAL OF
HUMAN REMAINS AND THEFT

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Heidi Todd, 45 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged on Thursday, November 29th, 2012, to unlawful mutilation and unlawful disposal of human remains and theft.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz sentenced Todd to 3 years in prison on each charge to run concurrently.  Assistant District Attorneys Nick Noriea, Jr. and Jason Cuccia were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Todd and Debra Fisher, 58 of Slidell, were arrested in March 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after someone reported that they had not seen the elderly male victim.  The victim had died in January 2011 and his body was mutilated and compressed into a container and hidden from authorities.  Deputies found the remains of the victim after searching the apartment.  Todd continued to collect monthly checks that should have been discontinued upon the victim’s death.  Fisher is awaiting trial for unlawful mutilation and unlawful disposal of human remains and theft.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented on the guilty plea, “this case unbelievably reveals what terrible things some people are capable of doing.  Hopefully prison time will get this defendant headed in the right direction.”

Unlawful mutilation and unlawful disposal of human remains are punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 years.  Theft over $500 is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years.

November 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY
---FACES LIFE IN PRISON---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Carter Anderson, 32 of Folsom, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery and felon possessing a firearm on Thursday, November 15, 2012.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour and a half after a three day trial before returning the unanimous guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz. Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Anderson was arrested in March 2012 by the Slidell Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local Slidell business parking lot.  The adult male victim was sleeping in his car when he was attacked by Anderson who then drove away in the victim’s car.  Anderson was arrested a short time later after police were able to locate him through a cell phone and telephone records.
 “Armed robbers strike terror into their victims,” said District Attorney Walter Reed “but when the violent offender goes to prison, our streets become safer and the victim receives some degree of closure,” Reed concluded.
Judge Swartz will sentence Anderson on January 22, 2013.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 99 years.  Jones could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for possession of schedule I drugs in 2006, possession of schedule II and schedule I drugs and felon in possession of a firearm in 2005 and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2004.

November 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF BANK ROBBERY
---FACES UP TO 80 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gregory Jones, 37 of New Orleans, was found guilty of first degree robbery on Wednesday, November 14, 2012.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 45 minutes after a three day trial before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress.  Jones was charged with armed robbery while the jury convicted him on the responsive verdict. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Jones was arrested in December 2011 by Federal Marshals in New Orleans after a robbery occurred in December 2011 at a local Mandeville area bank.  Jones drove from Orleans Parish and then demanded money from a bank employee.  Jones fled to his vehicle although his escape was slowed due to car trouble. The dye bomb included with the money exploded before an employee of a nearby business recorded the vehicle license plate.  Jones was finally able to get away to the south shore.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented “Those who come to St.Tammany to commit crimes can fully expect to receive serious jail sentences, especially when they are habitual offenders.  We will request the court to impose the maximum sentence possible in this case” Reed concluded.

 

November 5, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED INCEST

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Roy Estep, 76 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated incest.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated forty minutes on Friday, November 2, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris. Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the three day trial.

Estep was arrested in January 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused in 2007.  The victim told her sister about the abuse and the sister told their parents.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented that “sexual abusers of minor children are the worst of the worst.  It’s a good day when they are put away” he reasoned.

Judge Burris will sentence Estep on January 9, 2012.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

November 5, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPES

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tam Q Le, 49 of Meraux, has been found guilty as charged of two counts of aggravated rape.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for six hours on Wednesday, October 31, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the three day trial.

Le was arrested in April 2011 by the Slidell Police Department after two minor female victims were sexually abused.  One of the victims told her school counselor about the abuse.  The other minor female victim disclosed to police that she was also sexually abused by Le.  

“Hopefully these little girls can get some closure and feel safe knowing that this sexual predator is in prison” said District Attorney Walter Reed upon hearing the verdict.  “It’s always traumatizing for victims and families when the little ones have to testify” Reed concluded. 

Judge Coady will sentence Le on November 28th, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

October 18, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF BANK ROBBERY
---FACES UP TO 198 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Renard, 41 of Natalbany, was found guilty as charged on Wednesday, October 17th, 2012, of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 90 minutes after the one day trial before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz. Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Renard was arrested in October 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an armed robbery occurred at a local Covington area bank.  Renard entered the bank earlier in the day then returned hours later giving a note demanding money to a bank employee while lifting his shirt to reveal his gun.  Renard fled with the money but was arrested a short time later in a nearby subdivision.  Renard had discarded the money after the dye pack had exploded.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented after hearing that Renard had been found guilty, “Armed robbery is especially dangerous for the victim due to the mental trauma and possibility of serious bodily injury or even death.  My Assistant District Attorney and the St. Tammany Parish Deputies are to be commended for their diligence in prosecution and evidence collection.  This is one more criminal that will never again pose a threat to our quality of life and safe, clean environment.”
Judge Swartz will sentence Renard on December 17th, 2012.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 99 years.  Renard could face from 66 to 198 years in prison if found to be a career criminal due to prior convictions for federal bank robbery in 1997 and theft in 1995.

 

September 27, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF BATTERY OF A PRISON GUARD AND SIMPLE ESCAPE
…..FACES FROM 20 YEARS TO L IFE IN PRISON…

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Marlon Wells, 36 of Folsom, was found guilty as charged of battery of a correctional facility employee and simple escape.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for a 1/2 hour before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorneys Bruce Dearing and Scott Gardner were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Wells was being transported from the St. Tammany Parish Jail to the St. Tammany Parish Justice Center when he battered a correctional officer and escaped.  Wells was able to free himself from his restraints while in transit and upon arrival threw a homemade liquid concoction into the face of the deputy that allowed Wells to escape.  The deputy was treated at a local hospital for severe eye injuries.  Wells was arrested 30 minutes after his escape when another transport officer found him hiding nearby in a backyard shed at vacant residence. 

Wells accomplice, Candida Brown, 32 of Beaumont, Texas, was planning to aid Wells in his escape.  Brown was discovered by Covington Police parked in a suspicious location and was later arrested after she confessed to her involvement.  Brown pled guilty as charged to assisting an escape in November 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia sentenced Brown to 5 years probation.  Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Judge Burris will sentence Wells on November 28, 2012.  Wells is facing up to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Wells has 15 prior felony convictions including theft in 2000, forgery in 2001, bank fraud in 2001, identity theft in 2001, simple escape in 2011 and possession with intent to distribute cocaine and alprazolam in 2011.

October 3, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Gould, 24 of Slidell, was sentenced on Wednesday, October 3, 2012, to 25 years in prison.  Gould was found guilty as charged of a felon possessing a firearm and aggravated battery on September 24, 2012 by a 12 person St. Tammany Parish Jury.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Gould and four others were arrested in November 2011 by the Slidell Police Department after a shootout over a dice game.  Several people were playing dice when an argument erupted resulting in shots being fired.  Gould illegally possessed a weapon and fired a shot that hit an adult male victim in the leg.  Gould and the others fled to Houston where they were captured after some of his group were stopped by Houston Police.

The four others included:  Kendrick Hawkins, 26 of Slidell, who was sentenced to 4 years in prison on August 23, 2012, after pleading guilty to accessory after the fact;  Blaine Clay, 22 of New Orleans, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison August 8, 2012, after pleading guilty to a felon possessing a firearm;  Terrence Dolliole, 19 of Slidell, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Aug 8, 2012 for a felon possessing a firearm; and Myra Kelly, 30 of Slidell, who is charged with accessory after the fact and is awaiting trial.

Judge Penzato sentenced Gould to 25 years in prison as a career criminal and 10 years in prison for aggravated battery with the sentences to run concurrently.  Gould has a prior conviction for distribution of cocaine in 2009.

 

August 24, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF BANK ROBBERY

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Logan Mills, 24 of Mandeville, was found guilty on Monday, August 20th, 2012, of armed robbery, armed robbery additional penalty with a gun, 2 counts of attempted murder of a police officer, and aggravated obstruction of a highway.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated 2 ½ hours after the seven day trial before returning the verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand. Assistant District Attorneys Leigh Anne Wall and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Mills and Walter Roy Aswell, 23 of Mandeville, were arrested in April 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local bank.  Mills and Aswell were wearing ski masks and gloves as they ordered the bank teller to give them money at gunpoint.  The two robbers fled in a stolen vehicle into Mississippi.  Bogalusa Police received and returned gunfire as they chased the vehicle until it became disabled.  Mills and Aswell were found to be wounded upon arrest.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented after hearing that Mills had been found guilty, “My Assistants and the Bogalusa Police did a great job in getting this case to trial.  It took a lot of man hours and hard work to get all the evidence ready for this complicated case.”  
Aswell pled guilty as charged on August 17, 2012, to armed robbery, armed robbery additional penalty with a gun, 3 counts of attempted murder of a police officer, and aggravated obstruction of a highway.  Aswell was sentenced on Tuesday, August 21st to 25 years in prison. 
Judge Hand will sentence Mills on September 10, 2012.  Armed robbery with a gun is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years.  Attempted murder of a policeman is punishable by imprisonment from 20 to 50 years.  Aggravated obstruction of a highway is punishable by not more than 15 years in prison.   

August 14, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR DRUGS
--Could Face up to Life in Prison--

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Panagiotis Kondylis, 45 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged on August 7, 2012, for distribution of cocaine.   A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz after the 2 day trial.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

Kondylis was arrested in March 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after deputies learned of his illegal drug activities.  Deputies obtained information from confidential sources and conducted buys that resulted in the defendant’s arrest.

“Drug dealers are an especially destructive menace to our way of life.  People get hooked on drugs and commit crimes to pay their drug bill.  Removing a drug dealer has far reaching positive results.” commented District Attorney Walter Reed after hearing this trial result.
 
Judge Swartz will sentence Kondylis on October 3rd, 2012.  Distribution of cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years where as Kondylis faces up to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Kondylis has prior convictions for extortion and public intimidation, public bribery and malfeasance in office and racketeering all in 2006.

 

August 14, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY CHILD SEX ABUSE
          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Barton W. Naftsger, Jr., 37 of Picayune, Mississippi, was found guilty of sexual battery on Saturday, August 11, 2012.  A twelve person St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris after 5 ½ hours of deliberation.  Naftsger was initially charged with aggravated rape while the jury found him guilty of sexual battery.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case during the four day trial.

Naftsger was arrested in September 2007 by the Slidell Police Department after the minor female victim told a family member about the sex abuse.  The abuse occurred in Slidell during January 2007 when the victim was 7 years old.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented on this case by saying, “The sexual abuse of this seven year old child is an outrageous crime of violence. Thankfully, he will no longer be able to hurt other children. This child and her family need to begin the healing process."

Judge Childress will sentence Naftsger on September 21, 2012.  Sexual battery of a child under 13 years of age is punishable by imprisonment from 25 years to life in prison.

 

July 31, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James R. Day, 53 of Abita Springs, pled guilty on Monday, July 30th, 2012, to forcible rape, sexual battery, and indecent behavior with a juvenile.  Day was initially charged with aggravated rape before pleading guilty to forcible rape. The victim’s family was present in court to observe Day plead guilty.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress sentenced Day to 40 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Day was arrested in February 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after sexually abusing two minor female victims.  The victims were 10 and 5 at the time of Day’s arrest.  The victims’ mother learned of the abuse and alerted police.

“Hopefully these victims and families can get some measure of closure after this defendant admitted his guilt in open court” stated District Attorney Walter Reed.    

Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years. 
Sexual battery of children under thirteen years of age is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Indecent behavior with juveniles under thirteen years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than twenty-five years without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

July 31, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED IN BANK ROBBERY

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Walter Roy Aswell III, 23 of Mandeville, has pled guilty as charged to armed robbery, armed robbery additional penalty with a gun, 3 counts of attempted murder of a police officer, and aggravated obstruction of a highway.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand accepted the pleas and set sentencing for August 17, 2012.  Assistant District Attorneys Leigh Anne Wall and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Aswell and another man were arrested in April 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local bank.  Aswell and his accomplice were wearing a ski masks and gloves as they ordered the bank teller to give them money at gunpoint.  The two robbers fled in a stolen vehicle into Mississippi.  Bogalusa Police received and returned gunfire as they chased Aswell’s vehicle.  Aswell and his partner were found to be wounded upon arrest.
District Attorney Walter Reed commented after hearing that Aswell had plead guilty, “these Bogalusa Policemen reacted to this robbery with great courage and professionalism.  My office is now working diligently to bring the remaining suspect to justice.”  
Aswell’s alleged accomplice, Logan Mills, 24 of Mandeville, is awaiting trial on the same charges as faced by Aswell.  Mills trial is set for August 13, 2012. 
Armed robbery with a gun is punishable by imprisonment from 15 to 99 years.  Attempted murder of a policeman is punishable by imprisonment from 20 to 50 years.  Aggravated obstruction of a highway is punishable by not more than 15 years in prison.    

 

July 25, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR DRUGS

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Barry McQueen, 45 of Pearl River, was found guilty as charged of manufacture and possession of methamphetamine.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 35 minutes before returning the unanimous guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia after the 2 day trial.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

McQueen and two others were arrested in December 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after deputies learned of their illegal drug activities.  Deputies obtained information connecting the three to purchases of chemicals needed to cook meth.  A search of McQueen’s home site revealed the meth lab and paraphernalia needed for production of methamphetamine as well as the drug itself.

The two codefendants arrested with McQueen pled guilty previously.  Trina McQueen, 24 of Pearl River, pled guilty on May 8, 2012, to operation of a clandestine lab and was sentenced to 5 years probation.  Anthony Alexius pled guilty as charged on Monday, July 23rd, 2012, to manufacture and possession of methamphetamine and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Judge Garcia will sentence McQueen on September 6, 2012.  Manufacture and possession of methamphetamine is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 30 years.

July 20, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Harley White, 54 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of sexual battery on Wednesday, July 18th, 2012, after a 3 day trial.  The twelve person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.  Assistant District Attorneys Ken Dohre and Scott Gardner were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

White was arrested in November 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after a minor male victim was sexually abused.  The victim’s friend told his mother who called the victim’s mother and the Police were notified.

District Attorney Walter Reed pointed out that, “This conviction will keep this sex offender away from our kids for a long, long time.”
Judge Knight will sentence White on September 20, 2012.  Sexual battery of a victim under age thirteen is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years. 

 

July 17, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Louis Bordes IV, 23 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for one hour on Thursday, July 12th, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Assistant District Attorneys Harold Bartholomew, Jr. and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Bordes IV was arrested in October 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was raped at gunpoint near Slidell.  The victim was at work at a local campground when she came upon Bordes IV in the laundry room.  Bordes first demanded money and her phone before raping her.  The victim was able to tell a coworker to call 911 and Sheriff’s Deputies found Bordes IV walking nearby a short time later possessing a handgun.

District Attorney Walter Reed praised the work of Bartholomew, Jr., Knight and the Deputies by commenting, “The hard work of my staff and the deputies will ensure that this rapist will not ever have another victim.”

Judge Coady will sentence Bordes IV on July 18, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

NEWS RELEASE
JUNE 27, 2012

District Attorney Walter Reed reports that on Wednesday June 27, 2012, Dominic Robinson age 32, appeared in Judge August Hand’s courtroom to be sentenced.

Robinson was convicted of First Degree Murder of Samantha Jaume in Mandeville in 2008. During the trial, because of Hurricane Gustav the Judge dismissed the jury before the penalty phase could begin. This procedural issue has been to the Louisiana Supreme Court over these many years along with the many defense attorneys being assigned the case, which has caused extended delays.

Robinson tendered a waiver of any further proceedings and requested to be sentenced without the imposition of the death penalty. He waived all of his rights to appeal as well as any request for commutation of sentence in this case along with waivers of all appeal rights for his conviction and sentence from Terrebonne Parish.

“This protracted prosecution had many substantive and procedural issues which affect the imposition of a death penalty in this case. We have made every reasonable effort to impose the death penalty, but the delays, interruptions and circumstances warrant accepting a sentence to Life in prison without benefit of parole, suspension or commutation of sentence which brings some finality and closure to the victim’s family” District Attorney Reed stated .

“ This is a bitter pill to swallow both for my office and the family. The imposition of the death penalty requires a legally pristine and flawless criminal trial. This has not happened in this case” Reed stated.

“Over the years the District Attorney’s Office has maintained constant contact with the family’s representative. We thank them for standing with us. None of us find acceptance of this Life sentence to be satisfying” Reed concluded.

Contact Rick Wood at (985)809-8383


June 22, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF HOME INVASION
---- FACES POSSIBLE LIFE SENTENCE----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Daniel Lopez, 27 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of home invasion.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours on Wednesday, June 20th, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the two day trial with Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Lopez and Andre Francis, 17 of Covington, were arrested in January 2012 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after they entered a Slidell area apartment unannounced to commit a robbery at gunpoint.  Lopez got into a fight with one of the victims while Francis held the gun.  A witness in another room was able to call the police.  Police found Francis a few days later after he was identified by a social media picture.  Police continued searching for Lopez when they were intentionally misled by Stephen Trosclair, 21 of Lacombe, and Glenn Lopez, 25 of Lacombe.  A canine was called in and Lopez was found under the house.   

On April 16, 2012, Francis, Trosclair, and Glenn Lopez all pled guilty.  Francis was sentenced to 7 years in prison for home invasion, Trosclair was sentenced to 4 years suspended with 1 year of probation for resisting an officer, and Glenn Lopez was sentenced to 60 days suspended with 1 year of probation for resisting an officer.

Judge Knight will sentence Lopez on July 19, 2012.  Lopez faces life in prison as a career criminal due to prior convictions for aggravated battery in 2006 and simple burglary in 2005.  Home invasion is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years.

 

June 21, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO PHYSICAL CHILD ABUSE

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Pierce, 23 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged, Wednesday, June 20th, 2012, to second degree cruelty to a juvenile.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Pierce to 20 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

Pierce and Andrea Polizzi, 21 of Slidell, were arrested in March 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the physical abuse of the male toddler was discovered by a south shore hospital.  The victim’s grandmother observed the victim’s injuries and requested the baby be taken to a local hospital for an examination.  The baby was transferred to the south shore hospital where the injuries were diagnosed. 

Polizzi pled guilty as charged to second degree cruelty to a juvenile in November 2011 and was sentenced to 20 years in prison with 10 years suspended and 5 years probation upon release. 

Second degree cruelty to a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years. 

 

June 1, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

---MAN FOUND GUILTY OF OPERATING A METH LAB---
JURORS ENLISTED FROM AROUND THE COURTHOUSE

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Talmage Jones, 33 of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged of operating a methamphetamine laboratory.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated one hour, Friday May 24th, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

The trial was delayed due to a lack of jurors.  State law requires that 36 jurors be available for selection and only 30 were present on Thursday morning, May 24th, 2012.  Tales jurors are provided for in the Louisiana Criminal Code which states, “the judge may order the summoning of tales jurors from among the bystanders or persons in or about the courthouse..."  One of the Tales jurors was selected as member of the jury.

Jones was arrested in March 2010 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a meth lab was located on his property.  A Sheriff’s Deputy was dispatched to Jones’ home initially to arrest a fugitive from a Mississippi County.  The deputy observed meth lab debris upon arrival and a search of the property resulted in the discovery of the meth laboratory.

Judge Hand will sentence Jones on July 2, 2012.  Operating a meth lab is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 15 years. 

May 31, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO AGGRAVATED SECOND DEGREE BATTERY

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Lovell Johnson, 52 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged to aggravated second degree battery.  A six member Washington Parish Jury had been selected on Monday, May 21, 2012 before Johnson chose to plead guilty, Wednesday, May 23, 2012.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Johnson to six years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Johnson was arrested in April 2010 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an adult male victim was beaten with a baseball bat.  The victim was walking with Johnson’s former girlfriend before Johnson ran out of his house and beat the victim.  The victim suffered multiple contusions and a broken arm. 

Aggravated second degree battery is punishable by imprisonment, with or without hard labor, for not more than fifteen years. 

 

May 30, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

COVINGTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 4th DWI
---SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dennis Welch, 42 of Covington, was found guilty as charged Monday, May 14th, 2012, of 4th offense DWI. 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the judge trial and found Welch guilty as charged.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noreia Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

Welch was arrested in March 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a vehicle crash northeast of Covington.  Welch drove his truck through a stop sign at North Fitzmorris and Hwy 1081.  The truck plowed into the ditch and flipped over.  The toxicology results found that Welch was driving impaired on drugs.  

Judge Childress sentenced Welch Thursday, May 24th 2012 to 25 years in prison.  Fourth offense dwi is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 30 years.    

 

May 30, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED INCEST

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Trevel Watts, 24 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated incest.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated on Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012 before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Watts was arrested in July 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim reported the sexual abuse.  The victim told a friend about the abuse and the police were notified.

Judge Coady will sentence Watts on June 21, 2012.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

May 25, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Mizell, 38 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for one hour on Thursday, May 24th, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A.J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorneys Jay Adair and Leigh Anne Wall were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case for the 3 day trial.

Mizell was arrested in October 2009 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a minor male victim was sexually abused.  The victim told a family member who then told the victim’s parents.     

Judge Hand will sentence Mizell on July 2, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

March 23, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN SENTENCED FOR TWO ARMED ROBBERIES

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Larenzo Lomax, 36 of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of two counts of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict in fifteen minutes on Friday, March 2, 2012, after a two day trial.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the trial and Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   
Lomax was arrested in November 2011 by the Mandeville Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local bank.  Lomax was armed with a gun as he ordered two tellers to put money in his bag.  A red dye pack was included with the money and exploded as Lomax left the bank.  Witnesses called 911 as Lomax sped away although he was arrested the next day while attempting to buy a money order with dye coated money.
Judge Penzato sentenced Lomax to 60 years in prison on Monday, May 14th, 2012.  Lomax could face from 49 1/2 to 198 years in prison if found to be a career criminal due to a prior conviction for assault with a firearm in California.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

May 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

---MEN FOUND GUILTY OF COURT PAYROLL SCHEME---
          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that former Slidell Policeman William Massimini, 36 of Slidell, and Guice Giambrone, 65 of Baton Rouge, have been found guilty of a payroll scheme in Slidell.  Massimini was found guilty of filing a false public record, attempted public payroll fraud and attempted 2nd degree injuring public records and Giambrone was found guilty of attempted filing of a false public record.  A six person St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts to retired Orleans Parish Judge Dennis Waldron on Thursday May 10, 2012 after a four day trial.  Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Jack Hoffstadt were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Massimini was arrested in August 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he was found to have taken money for work he did not perform.  Massimini was being paid by a foundation hired by the 22nd Judicial District Court to monitor compliance of juveniles with Slidell City Court orders.  Massimini was requested to show documentation to verify his pay since 2005 but provided false documentation which revealed he had not done the work. Giambrone was the Court’s contact with the foundation.  Giambrone was also arrested in August 2007 after he also provided false documentation to verify Massimini’s work.

Judge Waldron will sentence Massiminia and Giambrone on Thursday, May 17th, 2012.   Filing false public records is punishable by imprisonment up to five years.  Attempted public payroll fraud is punishable by imprisonment up to one year.  Attempted 2nd degree injuring public records is punishable by imprisonment up to six months.  Attempted filing of false public records is punishable by imprisonment up to two and one half years.

 

May 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MEN FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE MURDER
---- LIFE SENTENCES----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shawn Hammond, 35 of Baker, and Brandon Davis, 26 of Baton Rouge, have been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  The twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours on Friday, May 11,  2012, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the five day trial with Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Davis and Hammond were arrested in March 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult man was killed and an adult woman was wounded at their home near Covington.  The two men approached the two victims on their front porch and asked to use the telephone.  The female victim handed the phone to Hammond and went into the house.  The male victim was shot and killed and the female victim was wounded as the shooters fled the scene.  The guns were later found discarded down the road and the female victim was able to identify the shooters from a lineup.

Judge Burris will sentence Davis and Hammond on May 23rd, 2012.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

May 9, 2012
WASHINGTON PARISH COURT RECAP
Division G

FRANKLINTON…..District Attorney Walter Reed reports that several cases proceeded to trial over a two week period in 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain’s Court.  Beginning on April 23rd, 2012, there was a regularly scheduled jury week followed by a special jury week beginning on April 30th, 2012.

Chazmon James, 22 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged of attempted second degree murder of Less Dillon on April 23, 2012.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Christopher Risner, 31st of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged of two counts of distribution of illegal drugs on April, 26th, 2012.  ADA Murray was in charge for the State.

Alvin Elzey, 52 of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged for obscenity and Gerald Dahlem, 41 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged for DWI 4th offense on May 1st, 2012, in separate trials.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case versus Elzy and ADA Murray was in charge of the State’s case versus Dahlem.

Cherrie Simmons, 35 of Franklinton, was found guilty of attempted 3rd offense dwi on May 3rd, 2012.  Assistant District Attorney Becky Hollen was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Marion Rushing, 45 of Abita Springs, pled guilty on May 3rd after her trial had begun to attempted 3rd offense dwi.  Assistant District Attorney Kelvin May was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Judge Crain will sentence James on July 9th, Risner on August 27th, Elzey on May 29th, Dahlem on July 9th, Simmons on May 29th, and Rushing on May 29th 2012.

April 24, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Travis Cutrer, 21 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours on Thursday, April 19, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Jay Adair were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Cutrer was arrested in August 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim told a friend at school about the abuse causing school personnel to contact a member of the victim’s family.

Judge Badeaux will sentence Cutrer on July 9, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

April 12, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF SEX CRIMES
---
COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Edward Benoit, 78 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of oral sexual battery, sexual battery and two counts of indecent behavior with juveniles.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour on Tuesday, April 10, 2012, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the trial with the State’s case being prepared and presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

Benoit was arrested in September 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two victims reported the sexual abuse to their mother.  Benoit was using gifts to entice the children to engage in sexual abuse. 

Judge Childress will sentence Benoit on May 1, 2012.  Oral sexual battery and sexual battery of children under thirteen years of age are punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Indecent behavior with juveniles under thirteen years of age is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than twenty-five years without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

April 16, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Brent Jones has been named President of the Louisiana Support Enforcement Association.  LSEA is a 501 (c) 3 organization whose mission is to promote the effective operation of a child support enforcement program in Louisiana.  The LSEA strives to develop a uniform approach to legal procedures and problems involved in administration of the program at all levels.  The LSEA serves as liaison for agencies interacting with the program by advising such agencies concerning policy and procedure and training of child support enforcement personnel.  LSEA is made up of hundreds of members from government agencies and private organizations.

Brent has a degree in General Business from Southeastern Louisiana University and serves as the Child Support Administrator in D.A. Reed’s Covington office.  He oversees over 10,000 non support cases with annual collections exceeding 16 million dollars.  Brent was the recipient of the 2005 “Service to the Child Support Program Above and Beyond the Call of Duty”, the 2004 Outstanding Supervisor in a District Attorney Office and the 2007 Outstanding Administrator in a District Attorney’s Office by Support Enforcement Services (SES), awards presented by Child Support Enforcement.

Brent is a member of the National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA), Western Interstate Child Support Enforcement Council (WICSEC), Eastern Regional Interstate Child Support Association (ERICSA), and Support Enforcement Services Web Development Committee.

 

March 16, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joseph Lemoine, 38 of McComb, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for two hours on Wednesday, March 14, 2012, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Lemoine was arrested in December 2009 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim told her sister and their mom called the police.

Judge Hand will sentence Lemoine on April 2, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

March 14, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORGERY
---AND FILING FALSE PUBLIC RECORDS---
          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gerard Bourgeois, 55 of Austin, Texas, was found guilty as charged on March 7th, 2012, of forgery and filing false public records.  A six person St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress after 20 minutes of deliberation.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Bourgeois was arrested in August 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after being indicted by the St. Tammany Parish Grand Jury for attempted theft.  The charge was amended to forgery and filing false public records on March 7, 2012. Bourgeois owed an investment company a mortgage that the investment company agreed to forgive if Bourgeois would sign over the mortgaged property.  The investment company sent this agreement in writing to Bourgeois to sign and return.  Bourgeois altered the agreement without notice knowing that the investment company would file the agreement with the St. Tammany Parish Clerk of Court.  Bourgeois had deceptively added language to the agreement that called for the investment company to pay him $975,000.00 as part of this agreement.  The investment company contacted authorities after they received the request for payment and realized what had occurred.

Judge Childress will sentence Bourgeois March 20, 2012.  Forgery is punishable by imprisonment for up to ten years.  Filing false public records is punishable by imprisonment for not more than five years.

 

March 7, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY
---COULD FACE UP TO 198 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Larenzo Lomax, 36 of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of two counts of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict in fifteen minutes on Friday, March 2, 2012, after a two day trial.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the trial and Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
   
Lomax was arrested in November 2011 by the Mandeville Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local bank.  Lomax was armed with a gun as he ordered two tellers to put money in his bag.  A red dye pack was included with the money and exploded as Lomax left the bank.  Witnesses called 911 as Lomax sped away although he was arrested the next day while attempting to buy a money order with dye coated money.
Judge Penzato will sentence Lomax on March 16, 2012.  Lomax could face from 49 1/2 to 198 years in prison if found to be a career criminal due to a prior conviction for assault with a firearm in California.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

February 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO KIDNAPPING

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Wilfred Deas, 37 of Slidell, has pled guilty as charged to second degree kidnapping.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia sentenced Deas to 12 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of State’s case with assistance from Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Justin Marquez.

Deas was arrested in March 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was kidnapped.  Deas beat the victim and forced her into her car and ordered her to drive to his family member’s home.  The victim locked the doors as Deas stepped out of the car and sped off.  Deas jumped on the hood of the car and held on for a mile while the victim called 911.

Second degree kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than forty years. 

 

February 15, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

CAREER CRIMINAL
---SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS IN PRISON---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress has sentenced Calvin Miller, 43 of Slidell, to 20 years in prison.  Dickerson was found to be a career criminal at his habitual offender hearing on Monday, February 6, 2010. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Miller’s most recent conviction resulted from a December 2010 arrest by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim reported being sexually abused.  The victim saw a video at school about sex abuse and disclosed her story to a school counselor.  Miller was found guilty of attempted indecent behavior with a juvenile on November 16th, 2011.
 
Miller has prior convictions for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle in 2002, distribution of cocaine in 1994 and felony possession of stolen property in 1987.

 

February 14, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE AND AGGRAVATED INCEST

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Michael Rick, 52 of Hammond, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape and aggravated incest.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for three hours on Wednesday, February 8, 2012, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the trial with the State’s case being prepared and presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Jason Cuccia.

Rick was arrested in April 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim reported the sexual abuse.  The victim told her therapist about the abuse and the police were notified.

Judge Swartz will sentence Rick on April 10, 2012.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than twenty years.

 

February 9, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTED MURDER

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Wade Esteve, 21 of Bogalusa, pled guilty to attempted first degree murder on Wednesday, February 8th, 2012.  Esteve pled guilty as charged after two days of trial before 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.   Esteve also pled guilty as charged to four counts of simple burglary, two counts of firearm theft, two counts of burglary of religious buildings and conspiracy to commit burglary.  Judge Crain sentenced Esteve to thirty years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case. 

Esteve was arrested in August 2010 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a Deputy Sheriff was shot during a car chase.  The Deputy came upon a truck stopped in the middle of the highway and turned on his cruiser’s emergency lights.  Esteve, Timothy Alford, 26 of Franklinton, and Timothy Esteve, 18 of Bogalusa, sped away leaving Josef Kevin Hughes, 19 of Franklinton, behind.  Esteve shot the chasing Deputy twice and caused him to stop his pursuit although other Deputies continued the chase.  The three men abandoned the truck after crashing it into a wooded area.  Esteve and Timothy Esteve were caught two hours later.  Alford escaped to Mississippi and was captured a week later.  Hughes was arrested two days later after he was identified.   

Alford was found guilty as charged of attempted second degree murder on September 1, 2011, and was sentenced to life in prison as a career criminal on January 17, 2012.  Timothy Esteve is awaiting trial for attempted second degree murder as well as firearm theft, simple burglary, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary.  Hughes is awaiting trial for firearm theft, simple burglary, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary.

Attempted first degree murder of a policeman is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 20 nor more than 50 years.  Judge Crain also sentenced Esteve to 12 years in prison for each simple burglary charge, 10 years in prison for each firearm theft charge, 12 years in prison for each burglary of a religious building charge and 6 years in prison for conspiracy to commit burglary.  Judge Crain ordered all the sentences to run concurrently.  


January 27, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER
----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Luis Starlyn Rodriguez-Hernandez, 30 of Metairie, has been found guilty as charged of first degree murder with no death penalty.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for three hours on Friday January 20th, 2012 before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the five day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Bruce Dearing.

Rodriguez-Hernandez and three others were arrested in March 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a local Covington man was found dead in his home.  The other three defendants, Gina Scramuzza, 44 of Covington, Carlos Alberto Rodriguez, 41 of Metairie, and Erly Montoya, 25 of Kenner, are awaiting trial on first degree murder charges.     

First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.


January 25, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

CAREER CRIMINAL
---SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON---

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress has sentenced Eric Hamilton, 44 of Slidell, to life in prison as a career criminal.  Hamilton was found guilty as charged of possession of cocaine over 400 grams on October 12, 2011 and found to be a career criminal at his habitual offender hearing on Monday, January 23, 2012. Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Hamilton was arrested in March 2011 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he purchased cocaine.  The drugs were on there way to Hamilton when they were found during a traffic stop in another parish.  State and federal law enforcement agents gained cooperation of the transporter and arrested Hamilton as the drugs were delivered.

Hamilton has prior convictions for possession of cocaine in 2002 and possession of more than 400 grams of cocaine in Orleans Parish in 1994. 

January 25, 2012
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO PERJURY
---ONE HUNDRED NINE YEARS IN PRISON---
          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Gainey, 29 of Waggaman, pled guilty as charged on January 19, 2012, to perjury.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand sentenced Gainey to twenty years in prison to run concurrently with the one hundred and nine years he is currently serving.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of accepting the guilty plea while Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Bruce Dearing were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Gainey was arrested in October 2003 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a local adult female victim was robbed and murdered.  Gainey was originally charged with first degree murder and armed robbery.  Gainey pled guilty as charged to armed robbery in July 2008 and was sentenced to ninety-nine years in prison.  Gainey lied under oath during the subsequent murder trial of a codefendant in August 2008 and was charged with perjury.  The first degree murder charge was amended to second degree murder and dismissed following the perjury guilty plea.   

Gainey was sentenced to ten additional consecutive years in prison in June 2010 for two counts of attempted escape, simple escape and two counts of possession of contraband in prison.

Perjury in a murder trial is punishable by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than forty years.


December 14, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE MURDER
---- LIFE SENTENCE----

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Carl Davis, 21 of Columbia, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  The twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for fifty minutes on Thursday, December 8, 2011, before returning a unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the three day trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Davis was arrested in January 2010 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult man was killed outside a rural bar.  Davis was upset that his car was blocked and was arguing with two people.  The victim approached Davis and tried to calm him down but Davis shot the victim three times at point blank range.  The victim was pronounced dead upon arrival at a local hospital.

Judge Hand will sentence Davis on December 20th, 2011.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

December 14, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 1st DEGREE MURDER
---- LIFE SENTENCE----

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Baker, 38 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of three counts of first degree murder.  The twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for two and a half hours on Friday, December 9th, 2011, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the seven day trial with Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Ken Dohre in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Baker was arrested in April 2008 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after three people were killed near Bogalusa.  Baker killed his estranged wife and two other family members before fleeing to Texas.  Baker was pulled over by Texas Rangers for a traffic violation and then was extradited.

The Washington Parish Jury met on Saturday morning December 10th, 2011, for three hours and decided against the death penalty.   

Judge Knight will sentence Baker on December 19th, 2011.  1st degree murder is punishable by death or life imprisonment at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

December 13, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Rondell Delaney, 20 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict on Thursday, December 8, 2011, after a three day trial.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the trial and Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.
   
Delaney was arrested in December 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an armed robbery occurred near Slidell.  Delaney robbed a pizza delivery boy at gunpoint of his phone, wallet, keys and pizzas.  Two other men, Henry Earl Banks III, 21 of Slidell, and Damian Stevenson, 20 of Slidell, came upon the robbery and grabbed the pizzas and fled with Delaney.  The victim ran back to the pizza store and alerted the manager.  The defendants were found to be in possession of the victim’s cell phone, money and pizza carrier when located the next day.

Banks pled guilty to accessory to armed robbery on July 11, 2011, and was sentenced to a year in jail and three years probation.  Stevenson is awaiting trial on armed robbery charges.

Judge Burris will sentence Delaney on February 28, 2012.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

November 17, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

          
COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy Junek, 22 of Pearl River, was found guilty as charged of sexual battery on Tuesday, November 15th, 2011.  The twelve person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour and a half before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.  Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Junek was arrested in September 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  Junek forced the victim to touch him in a sexually inappropriate way.  The victim told her dad and the police were alerted.

Judge Knight will sentence Junek on December 22nd, 2011.  Sexual battery of a victim under age thirteen is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years. 

 

November 16, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO THREE CHARGES
IN TWO DIVISIONS  

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dale Miley , 47 of Lacombe, pled guilty as charged on November 9th, 2011, to operating a methamphetamine clandestine laboratory and a convicted felon possessing a firearm.  Miley pled guilty in Division I after the Jury had been selected for his trial.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux sentenced Miley to fifteen years in prison for operating a methamphetamine clandestine laboratory and ten years in prison for a convicted felon possessing a firearm.   Judge Badeaux ordered that the sentences be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Miley was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in May 2011 after it was reported that he was illegally making drugs.  A methamphetamine laboratory and a hand gun were found at his residence. 

Miley had previously pled guilty to unauthorized entry of a business on October 10, 2011, in Division E.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris sentenced Miley to five years in prison.  Miley was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in April 2010 when it was discovered that he had entered a local business without permission and had stolen copper wire that was sold.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Judge Badeaux ordered that the Division I sentences run concurrent with the Division E sentence of Judge Burris.     

 

November 16, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO RAPE AND BURGLARY

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Demarqus Walker, 30 of Bogalusa, pled guilty on Tuesday, November 15, 2011, to forcible rape, aggravated burglary, and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  Walker was originally charged with aggravated rape but pled to the responsive rape charge.  The Jury had been selected prior to the guilty plea and the elderly female victim supported the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand sentenced Walker to forty years in prison for forcible rape, thirty years in prison for aggravated burglary, and twelve years in prison for simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.  Judge Hand ordered the sentences to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case with assistance from Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

Walker was arrested by the Bogalusa Police Department in October 2009 after he was identified by DNA evidence.  An elderly female victim was raped and burglarized in April 2007 but the perpetrator was never found.  Walker was arrested in October 2008 for another burglary case and his DNA was compared to and matched the DNA that was recovered in the 2007 rape and burglary. 

Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than five nor more than forty years.  Aggravated burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than thirty years.  Simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling is punishable by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than twelve years. 

October 28, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Curtis Keil, 39 of Bogalusa, was found guilty of manslaughter on Thursday, October 27th, 2011.  A 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for three hours before returning the guilty verdict.  Keil was originally charged with 2nd degree murder while the jury found him guilty of the lesser charge.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the trial while Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Keil was arrested in October 2008 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an adult male victim was shot four times and died.  Keil and the victim had a prior fight two months earlier.  Keil was still angry about the fight outcome and found the victim and killed him.

Judge Hand will sentence Keil on November 14th, 2011.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for up to forty years.  Keil will face up to 80 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Keil has prior convictions for illegal use of weapons in 1999 and burglary in Texas in 2003.    

 

October 28, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPES

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shane Austin, 37 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged of two counts of aggravated rape.  A 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 5 hours Thursday afternoon, October 27th, 2011, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the trial while Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Austin was arrested in February 2009 by the Bogalusa Police Department after two minor female victims reported the sexual abuse.  The victims were abused from 2003 to 2007 and were in counseling when they disclosed that they had been sexually abused by the defendant.

Judge Crain will sentence Austin on November 21st, 2011.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  

 

October 25, 2011
NEWS RELEASE

PAIR FOUND GUILTY OF SIMPLE RAPE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ralph Robertson, 20 of Alton, and Jerell Payton, 19 of Pearl River, were found guilty of simple rape on Wednesday evening, October 19th, 2011, after a three day trial.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for five hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Both men were originally charged with aggravated rape and were found guilty of the lesser crimes.  Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Nick Noriea, Jr. were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Robertson and Payton, along with three others, were arrested in October 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was sexually abused.  The victim was taken against her will from New Orleans to the Slidell area where she was raped.  The victim was later dropped off at a local gas station where she reported the crime.  The defendants were arrested at a restaurant nearby.

The three others arrested with Robertson and Payton were Chance Ross, 20 of Slidell, who pled guilty on Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, to forcible rape, Joshua Reed, 24 of Slidell, found guilty of forcible rape on February 25th, 2011, and Elroy Cooper, 21 of Slidell, found guilty of simple rape on February 25th, 2011.

Judge Swartz sentenced Reed to 30 years in prison on June 16th, 2011.  Judge Swartz will sentence Ross, Cooper, Robertson and Payton on November 15th, 2011.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.  Simple rape is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 25 years.

 

October 6, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Pierre Perkins, 21 of Covington, pled guilty on Thursday, September 28th, 2011, to manslaughter with a prison sentence of 30 to 40 years.  A St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected before the defendant’s plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.   The victim’s family supported the plea agreement.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Perkins and two other men were arrested in July 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim died from a head injury.  The victim and an adult female were driving in an Abita area subdivision when they stopped to talk with Perkins and two other adult males.  Perkins blindsided the victim with a punch which resulted in the victim’s death and the victim’s money was taken.   

 

Brenton Hills, 23 of Covington, one of the two other men, pled guilty on Friday, September 29th, 2011, to simple robbery and accessory after the fact.  Cedrick McCormick, 20 of Covington, the third man, pled guilty to accessory after the fact in November 2010 and was sentenced to two years in prison.

.

Judge Badeaux will sentence Perkins and Hills on November 7, 2011.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for up to forty years.  Simple robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than seven years.  Accessory after the fact is punishable by imprisonment for not more than five years.

 

 

October 5, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Christopher Spiehler has been found guilty of aggravated rape, simple kidnapping and pornography involving juveniles.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours Tuesday evening, September 27th, 2011, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 2 day trial with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner.

 

Spiehler was arrested in April 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  Spiehler met the victim on the internet and sexually abused her at her home.  Two months later Spiehler picked up the victim at her home and drove her to another state.  A victim’s family member called police with Spiehler’s license plate number.  Spiehler sexually abused the victim again before leaving her at a convenience store.  The victim was later found by a cab driver and reunited with her family.

 

Judge Garcia will sentence Spiehler on October 13, 2011.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  

 

September 26, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

THREE PLEAD GUILTY IN ARMED ROBBERY CASE

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Michelle Johnson, 28 of Slidell, and Ronald Washington, 25, and Brooke James, 19, both of Picayune, Mississippi, pled guilty last week in 22nd Judicial District Court.  Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Johnson to 25 years in prison and Washington to 20 years in prison both for armed robbery and James to 20 years in prison suspended for 2nd degree armed robbery.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Johnson, Washington, and James were arrested in July 2011 by the Slidell Police Department after an armed robbery occurred at a local nail salon.  Johnson and James went to the salon as customers to get their nails done.  Washington came in later to rob the two employees at gunpoint.  Johnson and James collected valuables from the victims and the three fled the scene.  The victims called 911 with a description of the getaway car and the Police arrested the robbers a short time later. 

 

Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Second degree robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 3 nor more than 40 years. 

 

 

September 26, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF   THREE CRIMES IN ONE TRIAL

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Randy Fortenberry, 55 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty of attempted second degree murder, attempted manslaughter, and aggravated battery.  Fortenberry was initially charged 3 counts of attempted 1st degree murder but the twelve member Washington Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts on the lesser charges.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

 

Fortenberry was arrested in August 2010 by the Bogalusa Police Department after three adult victims suffered gunshot wounds.  Fortenberry and one of the victims had a disagreement earlier in the day.  Fortenberry left but returned with a weapon several hours later.  The victim from the earlier disagreement went outside to again confront Fortenberry who produced a gun and shot the victim.  Fortenberry then entered the house and shot two other victims.  All three victims survived their injuries.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Fortenberry on November 21, 2011.  Attempted second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Attempted manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 20 years.  Aggravated battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.     

 

 

September 23, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Lilly, 57 of Lacombe, was found guilty as charged of sexual battery on Tuesday, September 20, 2011.  The twelve person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Scott Gardner were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

Lilly was arrested in August 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim reported the sexual abuse to her mother.

Judge Penzato will sentence Lilly on October 12, 2011.  Sexual battery of a victim under age thirteen is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years. 

 

 

September 21, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE AND SEXUAL BATTERY

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Randolph Edwards Smith, 23 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape and was also found guilty of sexual battery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour and a half on Thursday, September 15, 2011, before returning the guilty verdicts.  Smith was initially charged with two counts of aggravated rape while the jury found him guilty as charged on one count but found him guilty of the lesser charge of sexual battery on the other count.    22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre.

 

Smith was arrested in July 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after two minor female victims were sexually abused in 2004.  One of the victims told her therapist about the sexual abuse and then the other victim told of her sexual abuse to family members.  The trial delay was affected by the victims’ medical records being lost due to hurricane Katrina.   

 

Judge Knight will sentence Smith on October 10, 2011.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for up to ten years.

 

September 21. 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SIMPLE ROBBERY

 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Cornell Martin Jr., 31 of Picayune, Mississippi was found guilty of simple robbery on Tuesday, September 13, 2011.  Martin Jr. was initially charged with armed robbery but the twelve person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated two hours before returning the guilty verdict on the lesser charge.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Martin was arrested in November 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult male victim was robbed at gun point.  Martin and two accomplices met the victim in a local mall parking lot under the guise of selling the victim a television.  One accomplice, Javeion Baldwin, 21 of New Orleans, allegedly held the gun while the victim was robbed.  Baldwin’s trial for armed robbery is scheduled for October 11, 2011.  The other accomplice has yet to be arrested.

 

Judge Coady will sentence Martin Jr. on September 22, 2011.  Simple Robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than seven years.

 

September 9, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

 

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Richard Dale Kuhn, 50 of Bogalusa, was found guilty of manslaughter on Thursday, September 1st, 2011.  Kuhn was initially charged with second degree murder but the 12 person Washington Parish Jury deliberated 2 1/2 hours before returning the guilty verdict on the lesser charge.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Kuhn was arrested in October 2008 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult male victim died after being beaten.  Kuhn and the victim were out drinking when Kuhn learned that the victim had stolen a checkbook from another man.  Kuhn took the victim to the other man’s home for a confrontation.  Kuhn pulled the victim out of the truck and beat him and kicked him until he was unconscious.  The victim died later that night at the hospital as the result of his injuries.

 

Judge Hand will sentence Kuhn on October 10, 2011.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for up to 40 years.

 

 

September 8, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ATTEMPTED 2ND DEGREE MURDER

----POSSIBLE LIFE SENTENCE----

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy Alford, 26 of Franklinton, has been found guilty of attempted second degree murder.  Alford was initially charged with attempted 1st degree murder but the 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for four hours Thursday, September 1st, 2011, before returning the guilty verdict on the lesser charge.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 4 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

 

Alford was arrested in August 2010 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a Deputy Sheriff was shot during a car chase.  The Deputy was on routine patrol when he came upon Alford’s truck stopped in the middle of the highway.  The Deputy turned on his cruiser’s emergency lights causing Alford and two of his three passengers to speed away leaving one man behind.  Alford drove the truck and ordered the passengers to stop the pursuing Deputy.  One of the passengers allegedly shot at the chasing Deputy hitting him in the hand.  The Deputy was shot a second time causing him to stop the pursuit as he waived other Deputies on to continue the chase.  Alford and his two passengers abandoned the truck after crashing it into a wooded area.  The two passengers were caught two hours later.  Alford escaped to Mississippi and was captured a week later.  The passenger left behind was arrested two days later after he was identified.   

 

The two passengers fleeing with Alford in his truck, Wade Esteve, 21 of Bogalusa, and Timothy Esteve, 18 of Bogalusa, are awaiting trials for attempted second degree murder as well as firearm theft, simple burglary, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary.  The other man, Josef Kevin Hughes, 19 of Franklinton, is awaiting trial for firearm theft, simple burglary, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Alford on October 10, 2011.  Attempted second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Alford could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Alford has several prior convictions for simple burglary.

 

 

September 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTED MANSLAUGHTER

 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Steven Mounce, 41 of Hammond, pled guilty on Monday, August 29, 2011, to two counts of attempted manslaughter.  Mounce was initially charged with 2 counts of attempted second degree murder and aggravated criminal damage to property but pled guilty to the lesser charges. The victims agreed with the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Mounce to 10 years in prison on each charge to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Mounce was arrested in February 2011 by the Pearl River Police Department after a shooting at the local Veterans of Foreign Wars.   Mounce was talking profanely about a failed relationship when he was asked by a customer to stop.  Mounce moved toward the customer in an aggressive way but was repelled with a pool cue.  Mounce left the building to retrieve a shotgun and fired a shot through door that grazed the customer.  Mounce entered the building and was pointing the gun at the customer’s wife when the police arrived. 

 

Attempted manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years.

 

 

August 22, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MISSISSIPPI MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Andrew Roberts., 21 of Kiln, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than two hours Wednesday, August, 17, 2011, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Joseph Oubre and Scott Gardner.

 

Roberts was arrested in April 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a female toddler died of non-accidental blunt force head trauma.  Roberts was babysitting the child when he became frustrated with her and held her by the ankles while hitting her head against the floor.   


Judge Garcia will sentence Roberts on September 21, 2011.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

August 10, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

FIVE GUILTY LAST WEEK IN FRANKLINTON

 

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Seletha Bell, 22, Monique Colter, 21, Harold Bunch, 26, all of Bogalusa, and Tiffany Patten, 26 of Covington were all found guilty last week in 22nd Judicial District Court trials.  LA Johnson, 39 of Bogalusa, pled guilty after his trial had begun.  Bell and Colter were defendants in the same case but the other defendants were tried in separate unrelated cases.  

  

Bell and Colter were arrested in November 2010 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a male adult victim was beaten and sexually abused.  Both were found guilty Tuesday, August 2, 2011, of sexual battery and aggravated battery.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the trial and Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Sentencing is set for October 10, 2011.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.  Aggravated battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.         

 

Bunch was arrested in January 2011 by the Bogalusa Police Department after an adult male victim was robbed at gunpoint.  Bunch was found guilty Thursday, August 4, 2011, of armed robbery and armed robbery with a gun enhancement.  Judge Crain presided over the trial and Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation of presentation of the State’s case.  Sentencing is set for October 10, 2011.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.  Armed robbery with a gun enhances the sentence to not less than 15 nor more than 99 years.

 

Patten was arrested in September 2009 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  Patten allowed the juvenile to go with Joshua Smith, 34 of Bogalusa, who pled guilty to simple rape of the victim in October 2010.  Smith was sentenced to 10 years in prison.  Patten was found guilty Thursday, August 4, 2011, of eight counts of contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the three day trial and Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Sentencing is set for September 7, 2011.  Contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years.    

 

Johnson was arrested in March 2010 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a routine traffic stop revealed Johnson in possession of marijuana.  Johnson pled guilty Friday, August 5, 2011, to second offense marijuana possession.  Johnson pled guilty after the jury had been picked and Judge Hand sentenced him to 5 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Second offense possession of marijuana is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.


July 22, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Trevor Johnson has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 1 hour and 20 minutes Thursday, July 21, 2011, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the trial with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Jason Cuccia.

 

Johnson was arrested in May 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim told her school counselor about the abuse that began in 2006 when she was 10 years old.  The victim was pressured into recanting her complaint initially and the case was closed.  However, the case was reopened when the victim told the counselor a few months later about being pressured into recanting her story.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Johnson on September 8, 2011.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  

 

July 19, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGE OF AGGRAVATED BURGLARY  

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Aaron Salter, 49 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of aggravated burglary Friday, July 15, 2011, by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury after a three day trial.  The Jury deliberated two hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Salter was arrested in November 2007 by the Slidell Police Department after he broke into a mobile home residence and battered the female victims.  Salter and one of the victims was sleeping in his car outside the mobile home located in a trailer park.  The victim in the car went into the trailer and told the trailer owner that Salter had abused her.  The two victims locked the trailer door but Salter was able to break in and push the trailer owner down and drag the other victim out of the trailer.  Neighbors came to the victim’s aid and Salter fled the area.

 

Salter will be sentenced September 7, 2011.  Salter could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Salter has prior conviction for simple robbery in 1986, simple burglary in 1983, and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1982.   

 

July 19, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED IN DIVISION H

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that two defendants have been found guilty as charged last week by St. Tammany Parish Juries in unrelated cases.  Jill Hilsher was found guilty of possession of schedule III drugs and hit and run driving on Tuesday, July 12, 2011.  Kenneth Young was found guilty of aggravated flight and resisting arrest on Thursday, July 14, 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the two trials and Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases.

  

Hilsher, 46 of Carriere, Mississippi, was arrested by the Slidell Police Department in March 2011 after a car crash in a local parking lot.  Hilsher pulled into the lot and struck the victim’s vehicle while parking.  Hilsher relocated into another parking space and entered a store.  The victim observed Hilsher hit her car and called police.  Hilsher returned to her car and was found to be in illegal possession of drugs.  Possession of schedule III drugs is punishable by imprisonment for not more than five years.  Hit and run driving is punishable by imprisonment for not more than six months.    

 

Young, 40 of New Orleans, was arrested by the Slidell Police Department in June of 2010 after he sped off from a police checkpoint.  Young told Police that he would have to pull over to get his driver’s license for them to check.  Young pulled his car over but then sped off at a high rate of speed before crashing his car into a tree.  Resisting arrest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than three years.  Aggravated flight is punishable by imprisonment for not more than two years. 

 

June 23, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SECOND DEGREE MURDER

            AND ARMED ROBBERY

 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Spencer Watts, 20 of Slidell, pled guilty on Tuesday, June 21, 2011, to second degree murder and armed robbery.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Watts to life in prison for the murder charge and ninety-nine years in prison for the armed robbery charge ordering the sentences to run concurrently.  The victim’s daughter gave a compelling victim impact statement prior to sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Watts was arrested in April 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a local cab driver was found robbed and murdered.  Watts called for a cab and was taken to his destination where he stabbed the cab driver several times and took his money.

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life in prison without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years.

 

   

June 23, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Errol Farrar, 32 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery on Thursday, June 16, 2011, after a two day trial.  The St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato that evening.  Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstalt and Julie Knight were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

Farrar was arrested in May 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after a local Slidell convenience store was robbed at gunpoint.  Farrar showed the victim a gun in his belt and ordered her to open the cash register.  Farrar escaped on foot through the parking lot.     

 

Farrar could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Farrar has prior convictions in Jefferson Parish for aggravated battery and theft in 2000.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

June 23, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

CAREER CRIMINAL

---SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight has sentenced Dennis Dickerson, 31 of Covington, to life in prison.  Dickerson was found to be a career criminal at his habitual offender hearing on Monday, June 20, 2011. Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Justin Marquez were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Dickerson’s most recent conviction resulted from a July 2008 arrest by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim reported being kidnapped.  Dickerson was an inmate at the St. Tammany Parish Jail where he met the victim who was a jail civilian medical employee.  Dickerson was later released from jail and beat the victim forcing her to drive him to Mississippi.

 

Dickerson has prior convictions for escape and accessory to first degree robbery in 2009; theft of goods and assault on a public servant in 2008; attempted possession of cocaine, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling and theft in 2000; and escape in 1999. 

 

June 22, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John Eric Sims, 31 of Pearl River, was found guilty as charged of sexual battery on Tuesday, June 14, 2011.  The twelve person jury deliberated 2 and 1/2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

Sims was arrested on August 21, 2010 by the Pearl River Police Department after a minor female victim was sexually abused.  The victim told a friend at school who told her to tell the school counselor.  The victim told the counselor who called the Police.

Judge Penzato will sentence Sims on July 5, 2011.  Sexual battery of a victim under age thirteen is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.

 

 

June 20, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTED ARMED ROBBERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Keyshawn Hill, 30 of Violet, pled guilty just before his trial was about to begin on Monday, May 23rd, 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Hill to 20 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Hill was arrested in May 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after an armed robbery was attempted at a local store.  Hill and another man, Jacob Lagman, 25 of Chalmette, entered the business and covered their faces with scarves.  The store security officer observed the two men and realized they were armed.  Shots were exchanged and the two robbers fled.  No one was hit by the stray bullets.  Lagman was caught a short time later hiding in a nearby subdivision.  Hill and Charles Roy, 22 of Violet, who allegedly was the get-away driver, were arrested a few days later in their hometown.

 

Lagman pled guilty as charged to attempted 1st degree murder and attempted armed robbery on November 4, 2010, and was sentenced to a total of 10 years in prison.  Lagman may be sentenced to a longer prison term if found to be a career criminal at his habitual offender hearing August 8, 2011.  Roy is awaiting trial on charges of attempted 1st degree murder and attempted armed robbery. 

 

Attempted armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 49 ½ years.  Attempted 1st degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.

 

June 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO TWENTY-EIGHT COUNTS OF SIMPLE BURGLARY

 OF AN INHABITED DWELLING

 

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Barker, 24 of Pearl River, pled guilty to twenty-eight counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling on Monday, May 23rd, 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Barker to a total of eighteen years in prison.  Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

Barker and his accomplice, Richard Williams II, 29 of Covington, were arrested in May 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after many home burglaries were reported in Folsom-Bush-Pearl River area.  Williams was under investigation for an unrelated theft case when he confessed to the burglaries and also implicated Barker.

Williams pled guilty to eight counts of simple burglary of inhabited dwelling charges in February 2011 and was sentenced to fifteen years in prison and restitution to the victims.

Judge Coady sentenced Barker to twelve years in prison for counts one thru twenty-seven and six years in prison for count twenty-eight to run consecutively for a total of eighteen years in prison.  Judge Coady sentenced Williams to twelve years in prison for counts one through seven and three years in prison for count eight to run consecutively for a total of fifteen years in prison.

Simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling is punishable by not less than one nor more than twelve years in prison.

 

June 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

THREE JURY TRIALS IN DIVISION A

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jamal Wilhike, 20 of Slidell, Rachel Brisbi, 28 of Slidell and Jimmy Blackwell, Jr., 50 of Carriere, Mississippi, had separate trials this past week in 22nd Judicial District Court Division A.  Wilhike pled guilty while the jury deliberated and Brisbi and Blackwell, Jr. were found guilty by separate juries.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the three trials and Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases.

 

Wilhike was arrested in December 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after he was found to possess items stolen during an auto burglary.  Wilhike pled guilty on May 24, 2011, to 31 counts of auto burglary, 3 counts of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling, and misdemeanor charges of possession of marijuana, theft, and simple battery.  Judge Childress sentenced Wilhike to a total of 10 years in prison.

 

Brisbi was arrested in December 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after a male adult victim was hit in the head with a broken bottle.  Brisbi hit the victim with the bottle once and the bottle broke.  Brisbi then hit the victim with the broken bottle.  Brisbi was found guilty as charged of aggravated battery on May 25, 2011, and will be sentenced on June 21, 2011.  Aggravated battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.

 

Blackwell, Jr. was arrested by the Slidell Police Department after a local restaurant bathroom was set on fire.  Blackwell was asked to put his cigarette out before he entered the bathroom and set the fire.  Blackwell was found guilty as charged of aggravated arson on May 26, 2011.  Blackwell, Jr. will be sentenced on June 21, 2011.  Aggravated arson is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 6 nor more than 20 years.  

 

 

May 27, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

DIVISION H HAS ACTIVE CRIMINAL WEEK

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that ten defendants have entered pleas or had been found guilty by a jury and were sentenced during an active week in 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato’s Courtroom.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases.

  

     ---Karen Whiteside, 45 of Covington, was found guilty in March 2011 of issuing worthless checks and pled guilty Tuesday, May 24, 2011, to 2 worthless check cases, theft, and injuring public records.  Whiteside was sentenced to 10 years in prison including 5 years as a habitual offender with restitution to victims ordered as a condition of parole.  

     ---Stephen Harmon, 29 of Slidell, was found guilty of simple burglary in March 2011 and was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison after he was found to be a habitual offender. 

     ---Jason Chaffin, 21 of Mandeville, was found guilty in April 2011 of auto burglary and was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison as a multiple offender. 

     ---Darren Cousan, 25 of Abita Springs, was found guilty of distribution of cocaine in April 2011 and was sentenced Tuesday to 30 years in prison.  He was a third habitual offender. 

   ---Telly Williams, 34 of Slidell, was found guilty of illegal possession of stolen things and simple escape in April 2011 and was sentenced Tuesday to 7 years in prison as a multiple habitual offender. 

     ---Carlynn Keeney, 54 of Mandeville, was found guilty of third DWI in March 2011 and was sentenced Tuesday to 3 years in prison. 

     ---Jarrell Williams, 30 of Slidell, pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute oxycodone, possession of alprazolam, and possession of marijuana in May 2011 and was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison. 

     ---Patrick Authement, 30 of Mandeville, pled guilty to two bank fraud cases and issuing worthless checks on May 24, 2011, and was sentenced to 6 years in prison and ordered to pay restitution to victims. 

     ---David Kornahrens, 54 of Mandeville, was found guilty in February 2011 of fourth offense DWI and sentenced Tuesday to 25 years in prison. 

     ---Bronze Williams was found guilty of a felon possessing a firearm on May 14, 2011, and was sentenced Thursday, May 26, 2011, to 14 years in prison.

 

 

May 23, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON AS CAREER CRIMINAL

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress has sentenced Cornell D. Hood II, 35 of Slidell, to life in prison as a career criminal.  Hood was sentenced on May 5, 2011, after a hearing revealed that Hood has four felony convictions.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Hood was found guilty of attempted possession with intent to distribute marijuana on February 15, 2011, in the 22nd Judicial District Court.  Hood was convicted in 2009 of distribution of marijuana and possession with intent to distribute marijuana and in 2005 was convicted of possession with intent to distribute marijuana in Orleans Parish Criminal District Court.

    

Commenting on this career criminal sentencing, District Attorney Walter Reed stated: “Cornell D. Hood II, is a 35 year old male who is a fourth (4th) felony offender having previously been convicted in Orleans Parish for multiple drug offenses.  Louisiana has recognized the fact that career criminals should be subject to severe consequences when they refuse to live by the rules and laws of our State.  As such, the multiple offender statute was implemented and a mandatory penalty under the habitual offender law was imposed.”

 

May 5, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Creel, 23 of Pearl River, was found guilty of sexual battery on Tuesday, May 3, 2011.  The six person jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.  Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

Creel was arrested on May 7, 2010, by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was sexually abused.  Creel and the victim had a prior romantic relationship before Creel lured her over to his home to discuss a medical bill that was owed.  Creel took her keys and phone upon arrival and then sexually assaulted her before she was able to fight back and bloody Creel’s nose.  The victim continued to fight back and was able to call 911 from the home phone. 

Judge Knight will sentence Creel on June 30, 2011.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.

 

April 28, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 2 COUNTS OF VEHICULAR HOMICIDE

 

FRANKLINTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Melerine, 20 of Franklinton, was found guilty as charged of 2 counts of vehicular homicide on Wednesday, April 27th, 2011, after a 3 day trial.  A 6 person Washington Parish Jury deliberated 40 minutes before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Melerine was arrested in June 2010 by the Louisiana State Police after a vehicle crash in rural Washington Parish.  Melerine was traveling at a high rate of speed when his pickup crashed in a curve at the intersection of Hwy 424 and D.C. Crain Road.  The two passengers in Melerine’s truck died as a result of the crash.  Melerine was found to be impaired due to his Blood Alcohol Content exceeding the legal limit.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Melerine on July 18, 2011.  Vehicular homicide is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor for not less than five years nor more than thirty years.          

 

April 18, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPES

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that a 78 year old man has been found guilty as charged of three counts of aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Wednesday, April 13, 2011, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the trial with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Ken Dohre and Scott Gardner.

 

The defendants name is being omitted to protect the identity of the victims.

 

The defendant was arrested after the three female relatives, ages 5 to 8 at the time, told a social worker about the sexual abuse.  The defendant was caught in the victims’ room at an inappropriate time by another family member and the Sheriff’s Office was called.  The three separate victim testimonies of sex abuse were recorded and played for the jury.

 

Whoever commits aggravated rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for life without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  

 

April 18, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

FIVE PLEAD GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY

---LONG PRISON SENTENCES---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Devin Michael Rome, 20 of Covington, Jeward C. Miller, Jr., 21 of Hammond, Regan Tingle, 22 of Covington, Bryant Joseph Murray, Jr., 20 of Covington, and Jarred Lee Alexander, 19 of Covington, all pled guilty as charged to armed robbery on Monday, April 11, 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato sentenced Murray to 35 years in prison and Rome, Miller, Alexander and Tingle to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

All five defendants were arrested on April 25, 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a local convenience store manager was robbed at gun point.  The defendants entered the store just as the manager opened it for business and took her purse and cell phone.  The victim was forced to open the store safe and the robbers fled with the money and other items.  The robbery was recorded by surveillance cameras and the robbers were located a short time later after they used the victim’s cell phone that was traced by deputies.

 

Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

April 18, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

FIVE PLEAD GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY

---LONG PRISON SENTENCES---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Devin Michael Rome, 20 of Covington, Jeward C. Miller, Jr., 21 of Hammond, Regan Tingle, 22 of Covington, Bryant Joseph Murray, Jr., 20 of Covington, and Jarred Lee Alexander, 19 of Covington, all pled guilty as charged to armed robbery on Monday, April 11, 2011.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato sentenced Murray to 35 years in prison and Rome, Miller, Alexander and Tingle to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

All five defendants were arrested on April 25, 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a local convenience store manager was robbed at gun point.  The defendants entered the store just as the manager opened it for business and took her purse and cell phone.  The victim was forced to open the store safe and the robbers fled with the money and other items.  The robbery was recorded by surveillance cameras and the robbers were located a short time later after they used the victim’s cell phone that was traced by deputies.

 

Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

April 11, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS AS CAREER CRIMINAL

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress has sentenced Jerome T. Martin, 33 of Folsom, to 20 years in prison.  Martin was found to be a career criminal as the result of a hearing on Monday, April 4, 2011.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Martin qualified as a career criminal due to his five convictions.  Martin’s latest conviction occurred when he was found guilty of attempted possession of a schedule one drug, ecstasy, on February 16, 2011.  Mandeville Police observed the ecstasy in Martin’s vehicle after a traffic stop for a non visible license plate.  Martin also has prior convictions for possession with intent to distribute marijuana in 2004, possession of cocaine in 2001 and carnal knowledge and simple burglary in 1997.

 

Judge Childress ordered Martin to serve the 20 year prison sentence without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

April 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

LONG PRISON SENTENCES IN DIVISON J

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight has sentenced Byron P. Johnson, 26 of Slidell, to life in prison and Andrew Galatas, 44 of Slidell, to 100 years in prison as career criminals on Thursday March 31, 2011, in unrelated separate cases.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of state’s case in the Johnson trial with assistance from Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre for the career criminal hearing.  Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of all aspects of the Galatas case.

 

Galatas was arrested in April 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after it was reported to the FBI that Galatas’ computer contained child pornography.  A search of Galatas’ home revealed the child pornography and also nearly a pound of marijuana.  Galatas was found guilty as charged of possession with intent to distribute marijuana and pornography involving juveniles on November 11, 2009.  Galatas has prior convictions for molestation of a juvenile in 1999, possession of stolen property and issuing worthless checks in 1996, and possession of stolen property in 1987 in Orleans Parish. 

 

Johnson was arrested in February 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a search of a Slidell area residence.  An anonymous tip led officers to place the home under surveillance for possible illegal drug sales.  Officers found illegal drugs and an assault rifle in the home that witnesses said belonged to Johnson.  Johnson had fled the home but was arrested a short time later with several thousand dollars in his possession.  Johnson was found guilty of distribution of marijuana and attempted possession of a firearm by a convicted felon on September 1, 2010.  Johnson has prior convictions for possession with intent to distribute chlorazepate, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, and possession of alprazolan in 2006. 

 

March 29, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

FOUR JURY TRIALS LAST WEEK IN DIVISION H

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Karen Whiteside, 45 of Covington, Stephen Harmon, 29 of Slidell, Carlynn Keeney, 54 of Mandeville, and Albert Marrero, Jr., 40 of Lacombe were all found guilty last week in separate unrelated trials.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato, Division H, presided over the trials and will sentence each defendant on May 24, 2011.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases with assistance from Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner on the Marrero case.  Each trial had a different six person St. Tammany Parish Jury.

  

Whiteside was arrested in September 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after she gave two bad checks to a local merchant.  Whiteside was found guilty of issuing worthless checks on Tuesday March 22, 2011.  Issuing worthless checks is punishable by imprisonment for not more than ten years.  Whiteside has a prior conviction for theft in 1998 and could face up to 20 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Whiteside also faces pending charges for theft and injuring public records in an unrelated case.

 

Harmon was arrested in October 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he entered a storage unit without permission and removed some engine parts.  Harmon was found guilty of simple burglary on Wednesday morning, March 23, 2011.  Simple burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 12 years.  Harmon has a prior conviction for second degree battery in 2004 and could face up to 24 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.   

 

Keeney was arrested in September 2008 by the Mandeville Police Department after she was found to be impaired after she crashed her vehicle into another vehicle.  Keeney was found guilty of DWI 3rd Offense on Wednesday afternoon, March 23, 2011.  Third offense DWI is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 1 nor more than 5 years with 45 days being imposed without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

 

Marrero was arrested by the Mandeville Police Department in January 2010 after the female victim reported the sexual abuse.  Marrero was on trial for aggravated incest while the Jury found him guilty of attempted aggravated incest late Thursday night, March 24, 2011.  Attempted aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years.

 

 

March 4, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

                                                                 

COVINGTON---DISTRICT ATTORNEY WALTER REED AND SHERIFF JACK STRAIN OF ST. TAMMANY PARISH REPORT THE JOINT INVESTIGATION AND ARREST OF JAMES NOLAN WINSTON, AGE 66 AND JOYCE T. WINSTON, AGE 54 OF MANDEVILLE, LOUISIANA.  ST. TAMMANY PARISH SHERIFF’S OFFICE DETECTIVES MADE THE ARREST ON THURSDAY MARCH 3RD 2011 NEAR THE SHERIFF’S HALF-WAY HOUSE FACILITY IN SLIDELL.

 

JAMES WINSTON HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH THREE (3) COUNTS OF CORRUPT INFLUENCING, THREE (3) COUNTS OF ATTEMPTED OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE AND THREE (3) COUNTS OF PRINCIPAL TO THEFT OF MONEY.  JOYCE WINSTON IS CHARGED WITH THREE (3) COUNTS OF CORRUPT INFLUENCING, THREE (3) COUNTS OF THEFT, THREE (3) COUNTS OF ATTEMPTED OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE, THREE (3) COUNTS OF MALFEASANCE IN OFFICE, THREE (3) COUNTS OF PUBLIC BRIBERY AND THREE (3) COUNTS OF FILING OR MAINTAINING FALSE PUBLIC RECORDS. 

 

JOYCE WINSTON IS A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE AND WAS ASSIGNED TO THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE DIVISION.   INFORMATION WAS OBTAINED BY THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY AND SHERIFF THAT SHE AND HER HUSBAND WERE BEING PAID BY VARIOUS INDIVIDUALS TO MANIPULATE CRIMINAL CHARGES IN THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE.   DISTRICT ATTORNEY REED ADVISED THAT HER EMPLOYMENT WAS TERMINATED IMMEDIATELY AFTER HER ARREST.

 

“JOYCE WINSTON HAD ACCESS TO CONFIDENTIAL RECORDS IN THE D.A.’S OFFICE AND USING AN INTERMEDIARY WOULD RECEIVE CASH PAYMENTS FROM INDIVIDUALS OUTSIDE OF THE OFFICE REGARDING THE PROCESSING OF CRIMINAL FILES THROUGH THE SYSTEM.  I AM UNABLE TO COMMENT FURTHER ON THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE SINCE THE INVESTIGATION CONTINUES THROUGH THE COOPERATION OF OUR AGENCIES,” REED STATED.  THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY INDICATED THAT HIS STAFF WAS CURRENTLY CONDUCTING AN INVENTORY OF CERTAIN RECORDS IN THE D.A.’S OFFICE TO MAKE SURE ALL FILES ARE SECURE AND PROPERLY HANDLED.

 

“WALTER AND I ALONG WITH OUR STAFF HAVE WORKED TOGETHER TO BRING THIS INVESTIGATION TO THIS POINT.  WE STILL ARE ACTIVELY PURSUING INFORMATION TO COMPLETE THE DOCUMENTATION OF THIS CASE.”  SHERIFF STRAIN STATED.  BOTH WINSTONS HAVE APPEARED BEFORE A COMMISSIONER AND BAIL HAS BEEN FIXED AT $35,000.00 FOR JAMES WINSTON AND $50,000.00 ON JOYCE WINSTON.

 

THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY INDICATED THAT BECAUSE SHE WAS AN EMPLOYEE OF HIS OFFICE, THAT IT IS NECESSARY TO REFER THIS CASE TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR REVIEW AND PROSECUTION.   “I AM DISAPPOINTED THAT THIS EMPLOYEE WOULD VIOLATE A TRUSTED POSITION AND USE IT FOR PERSONAL GAIN.   FOR WHATEVER REASON JOYCE WINSTON CHOSE TO COMMIT THESE ACTS OF CORRUPTION, THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM WILL ADDRESS THIS APPROPRIATELY,” REED CONCLUDED.

 

 

March 4, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Rocarldo Weiters, 24 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery on Wednesday, March 2, 2011, after a three day trial.  The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

Weiters was arrested in January 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after a local Slidell convenience store was robbed at gunpoint.  Weiters never entered the store during the robbery but planned it, gave the firearm to his accomplice, and drove the getaway car.  Weiters’ accomplice, Gary Gilmore, 28 of Slidell, pled guilty to armed robbery in September 2010 and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.    

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Weiters on March 14, 2011.  Weiters could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

March 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

PAIR FOUND GUILTY OF RAPE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Reed, 24 of Slidell, was found guilty of forcible rape and Elroy Cooper, 20 of Pearl River, was found guilty of simple rape on Friday evening, February 25, 2011, after a four day trial.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for three and a half hours before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Both men were originally charged with aggravated rape and were found guilty of the lesser crimes.  Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Nick Noriea, Jr. were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Reed and Cooper, along with three others, were arrested in October 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the adult female victim was sexually abused.  The victim was taken against her will from New Orleans to the Slidell area where she was raped.  The victim was later dropped off at a local gas station where she reported the crime.  The defendants were arrested at a restaurant nearby.

 

The three others arrested with Reed and Cooper were Chance Ross, 20 of Slidell, who pled guilty on Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011, to forcible rape, Ralph Robertson, 19 of Alton, and Jerell Payton, 19 of Pearl River.  Robertson and Payton are awaiting trial on aggravated rape charges scheduled for April 18, 2011.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Ross, Reed, and Cooper on May 19th 2011.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.  Simple rape is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

 

 

February 15, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

COUPLE PLEADS GUILTY TO FIRST DEGREE ROBBERY

---LONG PRISON TERMS---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Terry Davidson, 31 of Sikeston, Missouri, and Andrea Matherly, 25 of Kankanee, Illinois, have pled guilty as charged to first degree robbery.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris accepted the guilty pleas on Monday, February 14, 2011, and sentenced each of them to 28 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

Davidson and Matherly were arrested in October 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a local Covington bank was robbed.  Davidson waited in the car as Matherly entered the bank and handed the teller a note advising that this was a robbery and that Matherly had a gun.  Matherly was given money and fled in the white Cadillac driven by Davidson.  The bank staff reported the defendants’ vehicle description and  Florida license plate number to deputies who stopped the vehicle a short time later.  Bank personnel were able to positively identify Matherly and Davidson.  A search of the defendants and their vehicle did not reveal a gun.

 

 

First degree robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 3 nor more than 40 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

February 14, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

PEARL RIVER MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 4th DWI

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Kornahrens, 53 of Mandeville, was found guilty as charged Friday, February 11, 2011, of 4th offense DWI.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 30 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Kornahrens was arrested in June 2010 by the Mandeville Police Department after a minor vehicle crash.  Kornahrens’ vehicle struck the victim vehicle from behind while it was waiting to turn.  Kornahrens breath had the odor of an alcoholic beverage and he failed the standard field sobriety test.

 

Judge Penzato will sentence Kornahrens Tuesday, April 5, 2011.  Fourth offense dwi is punishable by imprisonment from 10 to 30 years.          

 

 

 

February 7, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz has sentenced Andrew David Wetzel, 22 of Slidell, to 35 years in prison as a career criminal on Friday, February 4, 2011.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury found Wetzel guilty as charged of simple arson on September 13, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Jason Cuccia was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Wetzel was arrested in April 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after a St. Tammany Parish School Bus was burned in a local Slidell home improvement store parking lot.  Wetzel had used the bus to transport stolen computers and set it on fire to try to cover his crimes.   

 

Wetzel has multiple previous convictions for theft, bank fraud and injuring public records, as well as convictions for unauthorized use of an access card, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, attempted simple escape and issuing worthless checks.  Simple arson is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 15 years.

 

 

February 2, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF KIDNAPPING

---POSSIBLE LIFE SENTENCE---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dennis Dickerson, 41 of Covington, was found guilty as charged of second degree kidnapping on Tuesday, February 1, 2011.  The 12 person St. Tammany Jury deliberated 1 hour before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.  Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Justin Marquez were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Dickerson was arrested in July 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the adult female victim reported the kidnapping to police.  Dickerson was an inmate at the St. Tammany Parish Jail where he met the victim who was a jail civilian medical employee.  Dickerson was later released from jail and beat the victim forcing her to drive him to Mississippi.

 

Judge Knight will sentence Dickerson on March 15, 2011.  Dickerson will face a possible life sentence if found to be a career criminal.  Dickerson has prior convictions for escape and accessory to first degree robbery in 2009; theft of goods and assault on a public servant in 2008; attempted possession of cocaine, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling and theft in 2000; and escape in 1999.  Second degree kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.

 

February 1, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED FOR PORNOGRAPHY

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux has sentenced Guy Boudreaux, Jr., 32 of Covington, on Monday, January 31, 2011, to 10 years in prison.  Boudreaux was found guilty of 48 counts of pornography involving juveniles and 3 counts of attempted pornography involving juveniles by a twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury Thursday, November 11, 2010, after 2 hours of deliberation. Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial.

 

Boudreaux was arrested in February 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a search of his computer.  Sheriff’s Deputies received a tip from federal officials that Boudreaux had purchased illegal juvenile pornography from the internet.  Deputies found a total of 51 probable illegal images and videos on Boudreaux’s computer hard drive.  

 

Pornography involving juveniles is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.          

 

 

January 28, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN’S PROBATION REVOKED

ARRESTED FOR CLOUD NINE BATH SALT

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Mark Garcia, 28 of Slidell, was ordered to serve 10 years in prison for a 2009 conviction for possession of heroin and 5 years in prison for another 2009 conviction for possession of valium to run concurrently.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia ordered the jail time after Mark Garcia was found to be in violation of his probation at his revocation hearing Wednesday, January 26, 2011.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case at the hearing. 

 

The probation revocation was based on arrests for possession of cloud nine bath salt on January 11, 2011 and domestic battery on June 4, 2010.  In addition, Garcia was dismissed from the 22nd Judicial District Court Drug Court Program on January 12, 2011 for continual noncompliance and non participation in the program.  Probation and Parole Officer Joseph Williams presented the motion and order for the hearing to revoke Garcia’s probation. 

 

Garcia was arrested in March 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after a traffic stop.  Garcia failed to stop at a stop sign and a search of Garcia and his car revealed heroin and valium.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over this case which resulted in Garcia pleading guilty as charged to possession of heroin and valium in September 2009.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. presented the State’s case.

 

Possession of heroin is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.  Possession of valium is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.

 

January 27, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLED GUILTY TO SEXUAL BATTERY

AND SIMPLE BURGLARY

 

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy Lafontaine, 42 of Carriere, Mississippi, has pled guilty to simple burglary and sexual battery.  Lafontaine entered his guilty plea on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 before 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz.  Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Jason Cuccia were in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

Lafontaine was arrested in May 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after a short vehicle chase.  The adult female victim screamed after she observed Lafontaine peeping at her while she was in the ladies’ bathroom at a local business.  Lafontaine fled to his vehicle while a witness alerted police.  Lafontaine pulled over after a short chase.

Judge Swartz sentenced Lafontaine to 15 years as a career criminal on the burglary conviction and 10 years on the sexual battery conviction to be served concurrently.  Lafontaine has prior convictions for obscenity in 1988 and 1996 which enhanced his possible sentence to not less than 8 nor more than 24 years in prison.  Simple burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than twelve years.  Sexual battery is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.

 

 

January 27, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED FOR ARMED ROBBERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Quenton James, 27 of Folsom, was sentenced to 65 years in prison on Monday, January 24, 2011, by 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  James was found guilty as charged of armed robbery and aggravated flight from an officer by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury Friday, November 12, 2010.  Judge Penzato presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of the preparation and presention of the sentencing and career criminal hearings.   

James was arrested in March 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult woman was robbed at gunpoint near Covington.  James and alleged accomplice, Kelly Ray McGee, 25 of Ponchatoula, saw the victim get into her car in a store parking lot and drove up behind her.  Kelly allegedly took the victim’s purse while slightly revealing his hidden gun and he and James sped off.  The victim alerted the police with the license plate number and the robbers were quickly located and chased into Tangipahoa Parish where they crashed and were arrested.

James was found to be a career criminal due to a prior conviction for simple burglary in Tangipahoa Parish in 2007 that resulted in a possible prison sentence from 44 ½ years to 198.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Kelly Ray McGee is awaiting trial on armed robbery and aggravated flight charges.    


NEWS RELEASE
January 26, 2011

DA Walter Reed announces 20 life sentences imposed in the 22nd Judicial District for 2010
114 Jury Trials held in Washington and St. Tammany Parishes

Covington, Louisiana- District Attorney Walter Reed of the 22nd Judicial District announces that his office has prosecuted 114 jury trials in the 22nd Judicial District Court for 2010. As a result of these numerous trials over the past year, 20 life sentences have been imposed.

“I am very pleased with the work of my Assistant District Attorneys and staff along with the dedication that they have shown to protect our citizens in Washington and St. Tammany Parishes. As District Attorney, my policy is to focus on criminal jury trials and docket management by identifying serious felony and habitual criminals who are repeat offenders” Reed stated.

Thirteen of the life sentences imposed involved convictions for murder and rape throughout the two parishes and seven life sentences resulted from career habitual offenders.
“Many of these habitual offenders have numerous arrests and multiple convictions from various jurisdictions and it is simply time for the criminal justice system to recognize that they are a danger to our society and way of life. We continue to identify, charge, prosecute and convict individuals who commit serious felonies and those with multiple arrests and convictions” the District Attorney stated.

Once a person is convicted of the current offense, prosecutors then obtain records to show the prior convictions. If determined to be a habitual offender, Louisiana law allows for an enhanced sentence including a life sentence where appropriate.

For the past 5 years, the District Attorney’s office in Washington and St. Tammany Parishes has been one of the top three offices in the State processing and holding jury trials. The office continues to exceed more than 100 jury trials per year.

More than 2600 cases were processed and closed throughout the ten divisions of court for 2010.

Contact:
Rick Wood
District Attorney’s Office
985-809-8383

 

January 7, 2011

NEWS RELEASE

 

WASHINGTON PARISH COUPLE PLEADS GUILTY TO DRUG CHARGES

---HUSBAND SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jeffery Pigott, 47, and his wife, Shawanna Pigott, 32, of Bogalusa, pled guilty on Monday, January 3, 2011.  Jeffery Pigott pled guilty as charged to 2 counts of possession with intent to distribute cocaine and 2 counts of possession of cocaine between 28 and 200 grams.  Shawanna Pigott pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Jeffery Pigott to 30 years on each charge to run concurrently and Shawanna Pigott to 3 years probation.  Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Both Pigotts were arrested in August 2007 by the Bogalusa Police Department after 80 grams of cocaine was found in Jeffery Pigott’s vehicle.  Police observed Jeffery Pigott leaving his home and noticed that he committed a traffic violation.  Jeffery Pigott was stopped after a short chase and a search of his car and home revealed large amounts of cocaine and money.

 

Possession of 28 to 200 grams of cocaine is punishable by imprisonment from 5 to 30 years.  Possession with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment from 2 to 30 years.  Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for up to 15 years.

 

December 17, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

----MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Curtis Hall, 32 of Slidell, was sentenced to life in prison December 16, 2010 by 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Hall was found guilty of possession with intent to distribute cocaine by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury Wednesday, November 17, 2010, after a 2 day trial.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady sentenced Hall to life in prison after Hall was found to be a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Hall was arrested in January 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a routine stop at a traffic checkpoint.  Hall was found to be driving under suspension, a felon in possession of a firearm, and having two outstanding warrants for failing to appear in court.  Hall was later found to possess two bags of crack cocaine during intake at the St. Tammany Parish Jail resulting in this case.  Hall is awaiting trial for the felon in possession of a firearm charge.   

 

Hall is a career criminal due to prior convictions for possession of cocaine within 1000 feet of a school in 1999, aggravated battery in 1999, distribution of cocaine in 2000 and obscenity in 2001.  Possession with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years.

 

December 17, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO TWO CHARGES

----50 YEARS IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 21 year old Ricardo Tenorio-Palma pled guilty as charged to attempted first degree murder and armed robbery on October 18, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady sentenced Tenorio-Palma Thursday December 16, 2010 to 50 years in prison for attempted murder and 50 years in prison for armed robbery to run concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case. 

 

Tenorio-Palma was arrested in December 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after an elderly female was cut and robbed. Tenorio-Palma had worked for the victim and she identified him as the one who used a razor blade to cut her throat and take money from her purse.   

 

Attempted first degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.

 

December 16, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

----MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Donaldson, 38 of Slidell, was sentenced to life in prison December 13, 2010.  Donaldson was found guilty of possession with intent to distribute cocaine by a St. Tammany Parish Jury Tuesday, May 26, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

 

Donaldson was arrested in October 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he sold cocaine to confidential informants.  Video and audio surveillance recorded the illegal drug deals and a search warrant revealed the illegal drug operation at Donaldson’s home.    

 

Judge Crain sentenced Donaldson to life in prison after he was found to be a career criminal.  Donaldson has prior convictions for conspiracy to distribute cocaine in 2000 and second degree robbery and second degree battery in 1992.  Possession with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years.

 

December 13, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CHARGE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Davis, 42 of Folsom, was found guilty as charged of aggravated incest late Friday night, December 10, 2010. A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 ½ hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Davis was arrested in October 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported.  The crime occurred after Davis invited the minor teenage female victim to his home.  The traumatized victim fled the scene to find a family member.  Along the way a Good Samaritan helped the victim to report the crime and get medical attention.    

 

Judge Penzato will sentence Davis on February 14, 2010.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years. 

 

 

December 13, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

FOUR PLEAD GUILTY TO SECOND DEGREE ROBBERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Davin Sandifer, 31 of Mt. Hermon, Rachel Reynolds, 30 of Covington, Jessica Barber, 24 of Mt. Hermon, and Grayson Henley, 21 of Franklinton, have pled guilty as charged to second degree robbery.  Reynolds and Barber pled guilty on October 26, 2010, and Sandifer and Henley pled guilty on December 10, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Sandifer and Reynolds to 20 years in prison and sentenced Barber and Henley to 15 years suspended and 5 years probation.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

All four defendants were arrested in June 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult man was beaten and robbed at his business near Covington.  Reynolds planned the robbery and Sandifer beat the victim.  Several thousand dollars were taken and the entire crime was caught on security video.

Second degree robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than three nor more than forty years.

 

December 13, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Walter Kott Jr., 54 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour Friday, December 3rd, 2010, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Nick Noriea, Jr. and Jason Cuccia.

 

Kott was arrested in January 2004 by the Slidell Police Department after a woman died of a drug overdose.  Kott injected the adult female victim with the drug dilauded and she died sometime later.  Experts reported that the injection caused the victim’s death.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Kott January 11, 2010.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

December 8, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEXUAL BATTERY 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Darrel West, 25 of Slidell, has pled guilty as charged to sexual battery.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand sentenced West to 25 years in prison.  The victim family agreed with the plea agreement and gave victim impact statements.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

West was arrested by the Louisiana State Police in March 2010 after the sexual abuse was reported by the minor female victim to a family member.  The victim was interviewed by the Children’s Advocacy Center and West fled to Ohio.  West was later arrested in Ohio and extradited to Louisiana.

 

Sexual battery of a child under 13 is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years.  At least 25 years of the sentence imposed must be served without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

November 22, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

November 21, 2010 Sheriff Roundup  

 

COVINGTON:  District Attorney Walter Reed commented on the recent roundup of those persons who have outstanding warrants for their arrest, “WE, ALONG WITH THE COURT SYSTEM, WILL BE WORKING WITH THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE TO PROCESS THE INDIVIDUALS AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE. THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE HAS INDICATED THAT THEY WILL EXPEDITE THE REPORTS TO US.  ALL OF OUR STAFF HAS BEEN ALERTED TO THE INFLUX OF ADDITIONAL INFORMATION WHICH WILL BE FORTHCOMMING SHORTLY.  HOPEFULLY, DEFENDANTS WILL RECOGNIZE THAT THE COURT SYSTEM MUST BE RESPECTED AND THAT THERE ARE CONSEQUENCES FOR FAILING TO APPEAR IN COURT OR FAILING TO RECOGNIZE THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TO SUPPORT THEIR CHILDREN”.

 

November 18, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Quenton James, 27 of Folsom, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery and aggravated flight from an officer. A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 20 minutes Friday, November 12, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.   

James was arrested in March 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult woman was robbed at gunpoint near Covington.  James and alleged accomplice, Kelly Ray McGee, 25 of Ponchatoula, saw the victim get into her car in a store parking lot and drove up behind her.  Kelly allegedly took the victim’s purse while slightly revealing his hidden gun and he and James sped off.  The victim alerted the police with the license plate number and the robbers were quickly located and chased into Tangipahoa Parish where they crashed and were arrested.

Judge Penzato will sentence James on December 17, 2010.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Kelly Ray McGee is awaiting trial on armed robbery and aggravated flight charges.    

 

 

November 17, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF PORNOGRAPHY

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Guy Boudreaux, Jr., 32 of Covington, has been found guilty of 48 counts of pornography involving juveniles and 3 counts of attempted pornography involving juveniles.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdicts Thursday, November 11, 2010, to 22nd Judicial District Court Judge Reginald Badeaux after 2 hours of deliberation. Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case in the 4 day trial.

 

Boudreaux was arrested in February 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a search of his computer.  Sheriff’s Deputies received a tip from federal officials that Boudreaux had purchased illegal juvenile pornography from the internet.  Deputies found a total of 51 probable illegal images and videos on Boudreaux’s computer hard drive.  

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Boudreaux on December 13, 2010.  Pornography involving juveniles is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

         

November 16, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

----MAN SENTENCED TO 50 YEARS ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Troy Vollentine, 41 of LaPlace, was sentenced to 50 years in prison on Wednesday November 10, 2010.  Vollentine was found guilty as charged of negligent homicide and two counts of negligent injuring on Thursday, September 9, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Vollentine after a multi-bill hearing where Vollentine was found to be a career criminal.  The mother of the negligent homicide victim read a victim impact statement prior to the sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Vollentine was arrested in September 2009 by the Louisiana State Police after a two vehicle crash on highway 21 just north of highway 40 in northeastern St. Tammany Parish.  Vollentine was traveling alone northbound in a pickup when he crossed the center line and crashed into a car with three occupants.  A 16 year old female passenger in the car died several days after the crash.  The 16 year old female car driver and the 9 year old male passenger were also injured.  Vollentine was also injured in the crash.  Vollentine was observed driving carelessly before he crossed the center line and crashed into the southbound car.

 

Vollentine was sentenced as a career criminal due to prior convictions in St. John the Baptist Parish for simple burglary in 2003, possession of cocaine in 1995, and second degree battery in 1993.  Negligent homicide is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.

 

 

November 15, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kendra Talley, 30 of Covington, pled guilty to manslaughter and possession of crystal methamphetamine on Tuesday, November 9, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia will sentence Talley on December 1st, 2010.  Talley was initially charged in 2005 with second degree murder.  Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Talley and Tommy Rowell, 42, formerly of Sun, were arrested in December 2004 by Covington Police Department for the murder of Talley’s husband, Thomas Talley, 30 of Covington.  Talley and Rowell were out partying all night in New Orleans.  Early the next morning they arrived at the Talley home in Covington Point subdivision and blew the vehicle horn until the victim came out of the house.  Rowell shot Talley several times and exited the vehicle to shoot him twice in the head at close range.

 

Rowell was found guilty of second degree murder on October 25th 2007 and is serving a life sentence in prison.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 40 years. 

 

 

November 4, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO KIDNAPPING FORMER GIRLFRIEND

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joseph Ciruti, 28 of Slidell, pled guilty to simple kidnapping, aggravated burglary and aggravated assault on Wednesday, November 3, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Ciruti to 12 years in prison suspended for aggravated burglary, 5 years in prison suspended for simple kidnapping and 6 months in the parish jail for aggravated assault.  Judge Hand ordered each suspended sentence to be served concurrently and placed Ciruti on 5 years probation.  Ciruti was originally charged with second degree kidnapping but the charge was amended to simple kidnapping with the victim’s approval.  The victim read a compelling victim impact statement to the court prior to sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Ciruti was arrested in May 2008 by the Pearl River Police Department after he kidnapped his former girlfriend at gunpoint.  The victim was able to persuade Ciruti to go to the hospital where the police were notified.  Ciruti was transferred to another hospital where he was admitted.

 

Simple kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years, aggravated burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 30 years and aggravated assault is punishable by imprisonment for not more than six months.  Judge hand also ordered the defendant to stay away from the victim and her family.   

 

October 27, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady sentenced Rodney Hingle, 44 of Covington, to 30 years in prison as a career criminal on Thursday October, 21, 2010.  A St. Tammany Parish Jury found Hingle guilty as charged of simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling and possession of a legend drug without a prescription on Tuesday, September 28, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Hingle was arrested in April 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office as he was leaving a trailer on Bremerman Road near Lacombe.  A neighbor called police after seeing Hingle enter the trailer.  Police caught Hingle in the act and also found him to possess prescription drugs that belonged to someone else.  .

 

Hingle has previous convictions for possession of cocaine in 2006, theft of goods in 2006, simple escape and simple burglary in 2004, theft in 2004, and possession with intent to distribute cocaine in 2004.  Burglary of an inhabited dwelling is punishable by imprisonment of not less than 1 nor more than 12 years.  Possession of a legend drug without a prescription is punishable by imprisonment for up to 5 years.     

 

          

October 27, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO 35 YEARS IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of             Rodney Scott, 45 of Sipsey, Alabama, to possession of over 400 grams of cocaine.  Scott pled guilty on Monday, October 18th, 2010, and 22ND Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato sentenced him to 35 years in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Scott was arrested in July 2007 by the Louisiana State Police after cocaine was found in the eighteen wheeler he was driving.  State Police stopped the truck for a routine commercial truck inspection and found 5.4 pounds of cocaine in the sleeper compartment.  Scott picked up the cocaine in Texas and was supposed to drop it off in Alabama.

 

Possession of over 400 grams of cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 15 nor more than 30 years.  Scott was sentenced as a career criminal due to a prior conviction for manslaughter in 1997 in Alabama.

 

 

October 20, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE 

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Daniel Dominguez, 48 of Mandeville, pled guilty to forcible rape and aggravated incest on Monday, October 18, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Dominguez to 20 years in prison on each charge to be served concurrently.  Dominguez was originally charged with aggravated rape but the charge was amended to forcible rape at the victim’s request.  The victim gave a victim impact statement to the court prior to sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Dominguez was arrested in July 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the female victim told a friend about the sexual abuse that began in 2004.  The friend’s mother advised the victim to tell the Office of Community Services about the abuse.  The victim told the OCS case worker about the abuse and the case worker called the police. 

 

Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years.  

 

 

October 12, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

----MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jeffery Chittenden, 35 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling October 11, 2010.  Chittenden was found to be a career criminal by 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Chittenden was arrested in October 2008 by the Slidell Police Department while trying to sell the victim’s possessions.  The victim came home to find that his home had been burglarized.  Someone had earlier reported a man selling items from a shopping cart in front of a local business near the victim’s home.  Police escorted the victim to identify his belongings in the possession of Chittenden.

 

Simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 1 nor more than 12 years.  Chittenden was found to be a career criminal and faced 20 years to life in prison.  Chittenden has prior convictions for simple burglary and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2002 and a Texas conviction for burglary of habitation in 2006.

 

 

October 11, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY BY JUDGE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Felton Butler, 46 of Lacombe, was found guilty of aggravated burglary by 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux on Monday, September 27, 2010.  The judge trial resulted from Butler waiving his right to a jury trial.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Butler was arrested in June 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a break in and battery at a residence.  Butler burst into the adult male victim’s home and struck him with an unknown object.   

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Butler on November 3, 2010.  Aggravated burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 1 nor more than 30 years. 

 

 

October 6, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gary Gilmore, 27 of Slidell, has pled guilty as charged to armed robbery with a firearm. 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty plea on Wednesday, September 29, 2010 and sentenced Gilmore to 15 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

  

Gilmore was arrested in February 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after a local Slidell convenience store was robbed at gunpoint.  Gilmore entered the store wearing a mask and demanded money from the cashier.  Gilmore fled to Texas where he was arrested.  Two other alleged accomplices, Rocarldo Weiters, 24 of Slidell and Ionjaleic Cagnolatti, 20 of Slidell, are awaiting trial on their alleged participation in the crime.

 

 

Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  The minimum sentence for armed robbery is increased to 15 years if the defendant is found to have used a firearm in the commission of the robbery. 

 

September 13, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO VEHICULAR HOMICIDE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Angela Sour, 23 of Folsom, has pled guilty as charged to vehicular homicide, possession of marijuana and theft from a disabled person. 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain accepted the guilty pleas on Friday, September 10, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Sour was arrested in October 2008 by the Louisiana State Police after a vehicle crash on the Highway 1085 near Covington.  Sour ran off the road and her passenger died as a result of the crash.  Sour was found to be impaired and marijuana was found in the vehicle.

 

Judge Crain sentenced Sour to 7 years in prison for vehicular homicide and 6 months in prison for possession of marijuana and theft from a disabled person.  Judge Crain ordered that 3 years of the sentence to be served without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence and that the sentences run concurrently.  Vehicular homicide is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor for not less than five years nor more than thirty years.  Possession of marijuana and theft from a disabled person are punishable by up to 6 months in prison.

 

          

September 13, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy Murray, 31 of Henderson, North Carolina, has been found guilty as charged of first degree murder with no death penalty.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than an hour Friday evening, September 3, 2010, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 4 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

 

Murray was arrested in June 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a local Slidell man was found dead.  Murray had worked for the victim in his tree cutting business and had gone to the victim’s home to rob him.  During the robbery the victim was murdered.

 

First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

September 13, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

----MAN FACES POSSIBLE LIFE SENTENCE ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Troy Vollentine, 41 of LaPlace, was found guilty as charged of negligent homicide and two counts of negligent injuring on Thursday, September 9, 2010.   A six person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Vollentine was arrested in September 2009 by the Louisiana State Police after a two vehicle crash on highway 21 just north of highway 40 in northeastern St. Tammany Parish.  Vollentine was traveling alone northbound in a pickup when he crossed the center line and crashed into a car with three occupants.  A 16 year old female passenger in the car died several days after the crash.  The 16 year old female car driver and the 9 year old male passenger were also injured.  Vollentine was also injured in the crash.  Vollentine was observed driving carelessly before he crossed the center line and crashed into the southbound car.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Vollentine November 10, 2010.  Vollentine could be sentenced to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Vollentine has prior convictions in St. John the Baptist Parish for simple burglary in 2003, possession of cocaine in 1995, and second degree battery in 1993.  Negligent homicide is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.

 

September 1, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR SEX CHARGE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jessie Shelton, 44 of Madisonville, was sentenced by 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia Tuesday, August 31, 2010, to 20 years in prison.  Shelton pled guilty as charged to aggravated incest on August 16, 2010.  Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Joey Oubre were in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

The victim and several family members attended the sentencing with the victim reading a compelling impact statement in which she stated that she had moved from “victim to survivor.”

 

Shelton was arrested in March 2010 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the adult female victim reported the sexual abuse.  The victim advised that the sexual abuse had happened over the years from the time she was a minor until she was 18 years old.  The victim delayed in reporting the crimes due to fear of the defendant.

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Shelton to 20 years in prison with 1 year suspended.  Judge Garcia further ordered Shelton to never have any contact of any kind with the victim and to serve 5 years of probation once he is released from prison.  Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years. 

 

          

August 31, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Friday, 48 of Pearl River, was found guilty as charged of aggravated rape, attempted forcible rape and three counts of molestation of a juvenile.   A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Thursday, August 26, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the trial with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Friday was arrested in January 2008 by the Slidell Police Department after the rape was reported by the minor male victim to a social worker.  An adult female victim came forward after the rape charge against Friday was made public and Friday was charge with her attempted rape and molestation while she was a juvenile in 1996.

 

Judge Coady will sentence Straub on September 16, 2010.  Whoever commits aggravated rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for life.  

 

 

August 31, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tony Keith Straub, Jr., 23 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of aggravated rape on Tuesday, August 24, 2010.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 ½ hours before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 2 day trial with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr.

 

Straub was arrested in July 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported by the minor female victim.  Straub was escorting the victim around the Slidell area selling candy for her school.  Straub led her into some woods where the rape occurred.       

 

Judge Coady will sentence Straub on September 16, 2010.  Whoever commits aggravated rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for life.  

 

 

August 19, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTED MURDER

---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Richard Mccullough, 58 of Slidell, to attempted second degree murder.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady immediately sentenced Mccullough to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorneys Jason Cuccia and Scott Gardner were in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Mccullough was arrested in January 2009 after an adult female victim was shot three times.  Mccullough had asked the victim to follow him in her car to take his truck to be repaired.  Along the way Mccullough stopped his truck and walked back to the victim’s car and shot her.  The victim was able to drive away and call police who found her after she wrecked her car.    

 

Whoever commits attempted second degree murder shall be imprisoned for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.

          

August 19, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District William Crain has sentenced Charles Lee, 45 of Slidell, to 20 years in prison as a career criminal.  A St. Tammany Parish Jury found Lee guilty as charged of unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling and aggravated battery on Thursday, April 29th, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Lee was arrested in July 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after forcing his way into a Slidell area home.  Lee hit the renter’s boyfriend with a stick before fleeing.  A Deputy Sheriff and his canine named Gaston followed the defendant’s scent until he was captured nearby.

 

Lee has previous convictions for possession of cocaine in 2006, 2005, and 2002.

Whoever commits the crime of unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling shall be imprisoned for not more than 6 years.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated battery shall be imprisoned for not more than 10 years.   

 

August 17, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

3 MEN SENTENCED TO PRISON

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain has sentenced Robert Jenkins to 99 years in prison, William Lauga to 65 years in prison, and Skyler Jenkins to 20 years in prison.  The three men were sentenced Monday, August 16, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s cases. 

 

Robert Jenkins, 33 of Slidell, was arrested in June 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a man’s wallet and cell phone was stolen.  The victim followed Jenkins after the robbery and called police.  A K-9 dog was able to locate the victim’s stolen cell phone at the scene where Jenkins was arrested. Jenkins was found guilty as charged of armed robbery on Tuesday, April 6, 2010.  

 

Lauga, 34 of South Beach, Florida, was arrested in Florida in August 2009 by the U.S. Marshall’s service on a warrant from the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.  Deputies issued the nationwide warrant for Lauga’s arrest after he robbed a local Slidell bartender at gunpoint in January 2009.  Lauga had been living in St. Bernard Parish prior to the robbery and then fled to Florida.  Lauga was found guilty as charge of armed robbery on Wednesday, April 28, 2010.  

 

Skyler Jenkins, 20 of Kokomo, Mississippi, was arrested in November 2009 by the Mandeville Police Department after a minor female victim reported to the Children’s Advocacy Center that she was sexually abused by Jenkins.  The victim was telling her story about being sexually abused by someone else in another parish when she explained that Jenkins had sexually abused her in June 2009.  Jenkins was found guilty as charged of sexual battery and contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile on Tuesday, May 25, 2010.

 

Whoever commits armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.  Whoever commits sexual battery shall be imprisoned for not more than 10 years.  Whoever commits contributing to delinquency of a juvenile while involved in the commission of another felony shall be imprisoned for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years. 

 

 

August 3, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED FOR SEX CRIME

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial Judge Reginald Badeaux sentenced Daniel Rush, Jr., 34 of Slidell, to 25 years in prison.  Rush was convicted of aggravated incest April 22, 2010 by a 12 member St. Tammany Jury.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case. 

 

Rush was arrested in September 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported.  The minor female victim was asleep when Rush began sexually abusing her.  The victim told her friend’s mom who called police. 

 

Whoever commits the crime of aggravated incest shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than twenty-five years nor more than life.  At least twenty-five years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

 

August 3, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR ELECTED DISTRICT ATTORNEY

AT LOUISIANA BOYS STATE

 

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Myles Brumfield of Slidell has been elected District Attorney at the annual Boys State program held this summer in Baton Rouge.  DA Reed invited Brumfield for a visit on Monday afternoon August 2nd, 2010, to meet and congratulate him on his election.  Brumfield told DA Reed that he hoped to attend LSU and then law school and maybe one day be elected the District Attorney.    Brumfield’s father, Jerry, accompanied Myles during the visit and subsequent tour of the District Attorney’s Office in Covington.

 

(Myles Brumfield can be reached for interview at 649-2080)   

 

 

August 2, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

BOGALUSA WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SECOND DEGREE MURDER

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Amy Thomas, 24 of Bogalusa, pled guilty to second degree murder on Tuesday, July 20, 2010.  Thomas was initially charged with first degree murder but pled guilty to second degree to avoid the death penalty.  Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Thomas to life in prison.  Assistant District Attorneys Lewis Murray and Scott Gardner were in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Thomas was arrested in March 2008 by the Bogalusa Police Department after the minor female victim died at a New Orleans hospital.  Thomas had kept the child for her mother and physically abused it.  The child died of blunt force trauma.

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

August 2, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE 

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIME

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Donald Thieke, 43 of Mandeville, has pled guilty as charged to aggravated incest on Tuesday, July 13th, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Thieke to 15 years in prison.  The victim gave a victim impact statement to the court prior to sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Thieke was arrested in December 2007 by the Mandeville Police Department after the minor female victim told a friend about the sexual abuse.  This incidence of sexual abuse occurred from June through December 2007 when the victim was 13 years old.  The friend told the school counselor and the police were notified. 

 

Whoever commits the crime of aggravated incest shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor for not less than five nor more than twenty years. 

 

 

June 29, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

                   WOMAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

 

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Terri Cox, 27 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape and molestation of a juvenile.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours Friday evening,   June 25, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the four day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair.

 

Cox was arrested in October 2007 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after the minor female victim reported the sexual abuse to her grandmother.  The sexual abuse occurred when the victim was 5 years old in 2006.  The victim was able to testify at the trial by closed circuit television from another location.

 

Judge Childress will sentence Cox on July 8, 2010.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be imprisoned for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of molestation of a juvenile under the age of 13 shall be imprisoned for not less than 25 nor more than 99 years with at least 25 years being served without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

June 25, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF THREE CHARGES

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Eric Bolton, 39 of Lafayette, has been found guilty as charged of second degree robbery and second degree kidnapping.  Bolton was also found guilty of attempted manslaughter which was originally charged as attempted second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for five hours Wednesday evening June 23, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight.

 

Bolton was arrested in November 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he had beaten, tied up and robbed the female victim at her Covington home.   Bolton knew the victim and fled in her car.  The victim was able to free herself and call police.  Bolton was arrested three days later in Baton Rouge.

 

A habitual offender hearing will be held August 2, 2010.  Bolton could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Bolton has prior convictions for simple escape in 2004, simple kidnapping in 1996, and first degree robbery and purse snatching in 1993.  Whoever commits second degree robbery shall be imprisoned for not less than 3 nor more than 40 years.  Whoever commits second degree kidnapping shall be imprisoned for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.  Whoever commits attempted manslaughter shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than twenty years.   

 

June 21, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED FOR ARMED ROBBERY

------

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Johnson, 26 of Loranger, has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for armed robbery. A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour and a half Wednesday evening, May 5th, 2010 before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall presenting the State’s case.   

Johnson was arrested in September 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a man was robbed at gunpoint at a local Slidell motel.  Johnson burst into the victim’s room early in the morning and pistol whipped him while taking his wallet, cash, cell phone, and watch.  Johnson is also awaiting trial for two more robberies he allegedly committed before being arrested by Deputies later that day.

Judge Penzato sentenced Johnson to the 35 years in prison on Monday, June 21, 2010.  Johnson could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Johnson has two prior drug convictions in Orleans Parish in 2005.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.   

 

June 18, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED BATTERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Marvin Davis, 45 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated battery.  A 6 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated on Wednesday evening, June 16, 2010, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 1day trial with Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre presenting the State’s case.   

Davis was arrested in January 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the adult female victim reported being beaten.  Davis and the victim argued over a cell phone in front of the victim’s children which resulted in Davis punching the victim several times with a closed fist.  Davis also hit the victim with a kitchen container that lacerated her head.

Judge Knight will sentence Davis July 19, 2010.  Davis could face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Davis has prior convictions all in Orleans Parish for carnal knowledge of a juvenile in 2001, possession of cocaine in 1999, 1995, and 1989, convicted felon in possession of a firearm in 1989 and 1993, and possession with intent to distribute cocaine in 1989. Aggravated battery is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor for not more than 10 years.

 

June 14, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO VOYERISM

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of James Falvey IV, 52 of Pearl River, to video voyeurism.  22nd Judicial District Court Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea Monday, June 14, 2010, and sentenced Falvey to 5 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Falvey was arrested in February 2010 by the Slidell Police Department after he was reported taking a picture in the female restroom at a local store.  The minor female victim told her mother immediately that a man had just taken a picture of her while she was in the bathroom.  The store video camera identified Falvey as he entered and exited the lady’s restroom.

 

Judge Garcia also ordered Falvey to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.  Video voyeurism is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.           

 

 

June 9, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

ESCAPEES PLEAD GUILTY AS CHARGED

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy Murray, 30, Gary Slaydon, Jr., 28, and Jason Gainey, 28, have all pled guilty as charged to simple escape and introduction of contraband into a prison .  Murray also pled guilty to aggravated burglary. Murray and Slaydon pled guilty on Monday, June 1, 2010 and Gainey pled guilty on Tuesday, June 2, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz sentenced Murray and Slaydon to 20 years in prison and Gainey to 10 years in prison.  Judge Swartz ordered the sentences to be served in addition to the sentences the defendants are now serving.  Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

Slaydon and Gainey were arrested on June 19, 2009, and Murray on June 21, 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after escaping from the St. Tammany Parish Jail.  The inmates escaped from the jail by using a hacksaw secretly delivered during visitation.  Slaydon and Gainey were captured near the jail and Murray was captured after he had broken into a nearby mobile home and armed himself with a knife.

Slaydon is currently serving 67 years in prison for a 2009 conviction for attempted second degree murder, armed robbery and aggravated burglary.  Gainey is currently serving 99 years in prison for a 2008 conviction for armed robbery.  Murray is awaiting trial on first degree murder charges.

June 3, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kelton Torregano, 34 of Slidell, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for forcible rape and second degree battery.  A 12 member St. Tammany Jury deliberated 3 1/2 hours Wednesday, December 2, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  The state’s case was prepared and presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. in the 3 day trial.

 

Torregano was arrested in January 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after he beat and raped an adult female victim.  Torregano and the victim had an argument which resulted in the physical and sexual abuse.  The victim was able to escape to a family member’s home after the defendant fell asleep.  Family members took the victim to the hospital and the police were notified. 

 

Judge Coady sentenced Torregano as a career criminal after today’s habitual offender hearing.  Torregano was ordered to serve twenty years at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Torregano has previous convictions in Georgia in July 1999 for burglary, stalking, false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a firearm, aggravated assault on a police officer, and simple battery.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

May 28, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

            CAREER CRIMINAL COULD BE SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

 

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Donaldson, 37 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of possession with intent to distribute cocaine.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 25 minutes on Thursday May 27, 2010, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case in the 2 day trial.

 

Donaldson was arrested in August 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office at his home in Slidell.  Donaldson had been selling cocaine to a go between who was delivering the drugs to an undercover informant.  Police found the marked money used in the buys as well as 67 grams of cocaine in Donaldson’s home.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Donaldson on August 16th, 2010.  Donaldson could be sentenced to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Donaldson has previous convictions for possession with intent to distribute cocaine and distribution of cocaine in Federal Court in New Orleans in 2000 and possession of cocaine, second degree battery and simple robbery in 1992 in St. Tammany.  Possession with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years.          

 

May 28, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN SENTENCED TO LENGTHY PRISON TERM

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight has sentenced Rhonda Goodson, 59 of Cleveland, Texas, to 18 years in prison.  Goodson was found guilty of possession of cocaine over 400 grams on Wednesday, April 21, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre prepared and presented the state’s case.  

 

Goodson was arrested on March 12, 2008, by the Louisiana State Police after a traffic stop.  Goodson was stopped for illegal lane usage on interstate 12 near the Madisonville and Goodbee interchange.  Three kilos of cocaine were found hidden in the trunk of her car.

 

Possession of cocaine over 400 grams is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 15 nor more than 30 years.

 

 

May 26, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Skyler Jenkins, 20 of Kokomo, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of sexual battery.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated one hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict Tuesday, May 25, 2010.   22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presenting the State’s case.   

Jenkins was arrested in November 2009 by the Mandeville Police Department after the minor female victim reported the sexual abuse during an interview at the Children’s Advocacy Center.  The victim was telling her story about being sexually abused by someone else in another parish when she explained that Jenkins had sexually abused her in June 2009.     

Judge Crain will sentence Jenkins August 16, 2010.  Whoever commits the crime of sexual battery when the victim is under the age of 13 years shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 25 to 99 years with at least 25 years being served without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

May 25, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

---SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Eric Etienne, 23 of New Orleans, pled guilty to manslaughter on Tuesday, March 16, 2010.  Etienne was originally indicted for 2nd degree murder by a Grand Jury in 2006.  The victim’s father sent a victim impact letter to the court and supported the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Etienne to 20 years in prison on Monday, May 24, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Etienne was arrested in January 2006 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult male victim died of a stab womb.  Etienne and the victim, who were related, had an argument in their Slidell area motel room.  Etienne retrieved a tire repair tool from his truck and stabbed the victim.  The victim collapsed and died in the parking lot while Etienne tried to get help.

 

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years.

 

 

May 14, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO 3 CHARGES

---SENTENCED TO 17 YEARS IN PRSION---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Edgar Jenkins, 39 of Bogalusa, has pled guilty as charged to second degree kidnapping, attempted aggravated rape, and aggravated burglary.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz accepted the guilty plea on Thursday, May 13, 2010 and sentenced Jenkins to 17 years in prison.  The victim was in attendance and supported the plea agreement.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Jenkins was arrested August 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after an adult female victim was kidnapped at knifepoint.  Jenkins and the victim had previously been in a relationship before Jenkins attempted to rape her at her Covington area home.  Jenkins stopped the sexual assault when he was startled by barking dogs but forced the victim into a car and left the parish.  Jenkins brought the victim back home later that day and was arrested there later that night after neighbors saw him approaching.

 

Second degree kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 40 years.  Attempted aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years.  Aggravated burglary is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 1 nor more than 30 years.

 

 

May 14, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kenneth Woodruff, 48 of Lacombe, was sentenced by 22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz Thursday, May 13, 2010, to 15 years in prison.  Woodruff was found guilty as charged of 4th offense domestic violence on March 30, 2010 by a 12 person St. Tammany Parish Jury.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Woodruff was arrested in October 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after Deputies received a domestic violence complaint.  Woodruff and the adult female victim argued over family matters.  Woodruff punched her in the face when she refused to leave.

 

Judge Swartz sentenced Batiste to 15 years in prison at hard labor with 8 years suspended resulting in a 7 year prison sentence.  Judge Swartz further ordered 3 years of the sentence to be served without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  Domestic violence 4th offense is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 30 years. 

          

May 13, 2010

 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED IN CAR CRASH

---SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kenneth Allain, 48 of Talisheek, pled guilty as charged to first degree vehicular negligent injuring and driving while intoxicated on Thursday, May 13, 2010.  The victim’s son was present and supported the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Allain to 10 years in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Allain was arrested in February 2010 by the Louisiana State Police after a two vehicle car crash on highway 41 north of Slidell.  Allain drove his car into the rear of the elderly female victim’s car as it was stopped attempting to turn.   The victim was transported to the hospital with serious injuries and Allain was found to be impaired.

 

Judge Coady initially sentenced Allain to 5 years in prison but increased the sentence to 10 years in prison after Allain was found to be a habitual offender.  Allain has prior convictions for possession of marijuana in 1986 and possession of methadone in 2002.

First degree vehicular negligent injuring is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.  Driving while intoxicated is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 6 months.

 

 

May 6, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

KKK LEADER PLEADS GUILTY TO MURDER

---SENTENCED TO L IFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Raymond Chuck Foster, 45 of Bogalusa, has pled guilty as charged to second degree murder.  The trial was in it’s third day when Foster decided to plead guilty.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea and immediately sentenced Foster to life in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre prepared and presented the State’s case.

 

Foster was arrested in November 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a female victim was shot and killed near Sun.  Foster was the leader of a small Klu Klux Klan unit that the victim had come to Louisiana to join.  Foster shot the victim after she announced that she was withdrawing from the group and returning home.

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

May 6, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joshua Johnson, 26 of Loranger, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery. A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour and a half Wednesday evening, May 5th, 2010 before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall presenting the State’s case.   

Johnson was arrested in September 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a man was robbed at gunpoint at a local Slidell motel.  Johnson burst into the victim’s room early in the morning and pistol whipped him while taking his wallet, cash, cell phone, and watch.  Johnson is also awaiting trial for two more robberies he allegedly committed before being arrested by Deputies later that day.

Judge Penzato will sentence Johnson May 27th, 2010.  Johnson could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Johnson has two prior drug convictions in Orleans Parish in 2005.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

   

May 4, 2010

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ryan Mizell, 20 of Sun, pled guilty Monday, May 3rd, 2010, to two separate cases of indecent behavior with a juvenile.  Mizell had originally been charged with sexual battery in the case of the male victim.  The victims supported the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty pleas and sentenced Mizell to 10 years in prison with 5 years suspended.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s cases.

 

ADA Wall gave a victim impact statement for the juvenile female victim that included, “I want Ryan to go to jail because he isn’t safe around kids”.  The mother of the juvenile male victim also gave a victim impact statement explaining how this crime has affected her son and family.

 

Mizell was first arrested in July 2008 by the Sun Police Department after the juvenile female victim’s mother told police of the sexual abuse.  The victim advised that Mizell had exposed himself to her.  Mizell was arrested again in February 2009 after the first charge was publicized.  The juvenile male victim told his mother that Mizell was exposing himself while they were swimming.

 

Judge Penzato ordered that the first two years of the 5 year prison term be served without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  She also ordered Mizell to register as a sex offender for 15 years after prison.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile under the age of thirteen is punishable by imprisonment from 2 to 25 years.    

 

 

May 3, 2010         

NEWS RELEASE

 

FOUR FOUND GUILTY LAST WEEK

----ONE COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Donnell Thomas, 24 of Bogalusa, William David Lauga, 34 of South Beach, Florida, and Charles Lee, 45 of Slidell, were all found guilty as charged in separate trials last week in Covington.  Anthony Joseph Lachute, 36 of Bogalusa, was found guilty in Franklinton.

 

Thomas was found guilty on Wednesday, April 28, 2010, of distribution of marijuana and hydrocodone.  Thomas was arrested in September 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he sold illegal drugs to undercover agents.  22ND Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz sentenced Thomas to 7 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presented the States case.  Distribution of marijuana is punishable by imprisonment for not less that 5 nor more than 30 years.  Distribution of hydrocodone is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years. 

Lauga was found guilty on Wednesday, April 28, 2010, of armed robbery.  Lauga was arrested in Florida in August 2009 by the U.S. Marshall’s service on a warrant from the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.  Deputies issued the nationwide warrant for Lauga’s arrest after he robbed a local Slidell bartender at gunpoint in January 2009.  Lauga had been living in St. Bernard Parish prior to the robbery and then fled to Florida.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain will sentence Lauga May 24th, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presented the State’s case.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.

Lee was found guilty on Thursday, April 29, 2010, of unauthorized entry and simple battery.  Lee was arrested in July 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after forcing his way into a Slidell area home.  Lee hit the renter’s boyfriend with a stick before fleeing.  A Deputy Sheriff and his canine, Gaston, followed the defendant’s scent until he was captured nearby.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain will sentence Lee on June 28, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presented the State’s case. Lee could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Lee has prior convictions for possession of marijuana in 2009, possession of cocaine in 2006, and 3 convictions for possession of cocaine in 2002.

 

Lachute was found guilty Tuesday, April 27, 2010, of attempted cruelty to a juvenile.  Lachute was arrested in May 2007 by the Bogalusa Police Department after the juvenile female victim had trouble walking at school.  A school staff member noticed the victim’s physical trouble and called the Office of Community Services.  The OCS and Bogalusa Police went to Lachute’s home and arrested him.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress will sentence Lachute on May 5, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair presented the State’s case.  Attempted cruelty to a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.

 

 

April 20, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Karolina Glover, 74 of Mandeville, has pled guilty to manslaughter.  Glover was originally indicted for 2nd degree murder by a Grand Jury in 2007.  22d Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Glover to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Glover was arrested in November 2006 by the Mandeville Police Department after the elderly female victim died at a local hospital.  The murder occurred at a local nursing home where Glover and the victim were sharing a room together.  Glover used a metal drawer handle to strike the victim several times causing her death.

 

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years. 

 

 

 

April 7, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Jenkins, 32 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery. A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated one hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict Tuesday, April 6, 2010.   22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presenting the State’s case.   

Jenkins was arrested in June 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a man’s wallet and cell phone was stolen.  The victim followed Jenkins after the robbery and called police.  A K-9 dog was able to locate the victim’s stolen cell phone at the scene where Jenkins was arrested.

Judge Crain will sentence Jenkins May 24th, 2010.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 10 to 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Mitchell will face from 99 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Jenkins has five prior convictions for drugs from 2002 to 2007.

 

 

April 7, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

---Defendant Waives Jury---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joseph Hampton, 43 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  Hampton requested a judge trial and 22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato heard the case on Tuesday, April 6, 2010.  The trial lasted 3 hours in the morning before Judge Penzato found Hampton guilty in her ruling after lunch.  The state’s case was prepared and presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Hampton was arrested in September 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the minor female victim reported the rapes to her mother.  The sexual abuse began when the victim was 12 years old and lasted for 5 months. 

 

Judge Penzato will sentence Hampton April 22, 2010.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor, without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

March 26, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE

---COULD FACE 80 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

FRANKLINTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Sadat El-Amin, 38 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of 2 counts of forcible rape.  A 12 member Washington Jury deliberated 50 minutes Thursday March 25, 2010, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the 2 day trial with the state’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair.

 

El-Amin was arrested in August 2008 by the Franklinton Police Department after the rapes were reported.  The minor female victim told El-Amin no repeatedly but was held down and raped twice.  The female victim told her mother about the sex abuse and the police were notified.

 

Judge Burris will sentence El-Amin on June 7, 2010.  El-Amin will face up to 80 years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  El-Amin has a previous conviction for bank fraud in 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

          

March 19, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO VEHICULAR HOMICIDE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Leo Batiste, 49 of Lacombe, has pled guilty as charged to vehicular homicide and two counts of vehicular negligent injuring.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain accepted the guilty plea on Monday, March 15, 2010.  The victim’s father and daughter gave victim impact statements prior to sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Batiste was arrested in March 2009 by the Louisiana State Police after a vehicle crash on the Highway 11 bridge near Slidell.  Batiste’s pickup truck crossed the center line and and crashed head on into the victim’s sport utility vehicle.  The victim was pronounced dead at the scene and his wife and daughter survived the crash and were taken to a local hospital.

 

Judge Crain sentenced Batiste to 7 years in prison for vehicular homicide and 6 months in prison for each count of vehicular negligent injuring.  Judge Crain ordered that the sentences run consecutively resulting in a total sentence of 8 years in prison.  Vehicular homicide is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor for not less than five years nor more than thirty years.  Vehicular negligent injuring is punishable by 6 months in prison.

 

          

March 18, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CHARGE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Tate, 25 of Franklinton, has been found guilty Wednesday night, March 17, 2010,  of indecent behavior with a juvenile after a 1 day trial.  A 12 member St. Tammany Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Tate was arrested in August 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sex abuse was reported.  The minor female victim’s mother discovered the indecent sexual texting on the victim’s telephone and contacted police.  Tate had randomly called the victim and began texting her sexually explicit photos and suggestions. 

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Tate on April 5, 2010.  Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with a juvenile shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two nor more than twenty-five years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

          

March 18, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CHARGE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Tate, 25 of Franklinton, has been found guilty Wednesday night, March 17, 2010,  of indecent behavior with a juvenile after a 1 day trial.  A 12 member St. Tammany Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Tate was arrested in August 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sex abuse was reported.  The minor female victim’s mother discovered the indecent sexual texting on the victim’s telephone and contacted police.  Tate had randomly called the victim and began texting her sexually explicit photos and suggestions. 

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Tate on April 5, 2010.  Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with a juvenile shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two nor more than twenty-five years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

          

March 12, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jody Swafford, 30 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of first degree murder with no death penalty.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours Wednesday evening, March 10, 2010, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

 

Swafford was arrested in November 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a local Slidell man was found dead.  Swafford had worked for the victim in his tree cutting business and had gone to the victim’s home to rob him.  During the robbery the victim was murdered.

 

Timothy Murray, 30 of North Carolina, is awaiting trial for allegedly being Swafford’s accomplice in the murder.   

 

First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

March 3, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

            CAREER CRIMINAL SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

 

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Holts, 43 of Slidell,

was sentenced to life in prison, yesterday, March 2, 2010, after 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady found him to be a habitual offender.  Holts was found guilty as charged of forcible rape by a 12 member St. Tammany Jury on Thursday October 15, 2009.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Holts was arrested in November 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported.  The female victim was asleep when Holts began sexually abusing her.  The victim awoke and screamed for Holts to stop but he continued with his hand over the victim’s mouth.  Another person in the trailer came to the victim’s aid and the police were called. 

 

Holts was found to be a habitual offender due to previous convictions for possession with intent to distribute prescription drugs in 2009, simple robbery in 2005, theft twice in 1986, and illegal possession of stolen things in 1984.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

          

March 3, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

MAN SENTENCED TO 40 YEARS IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain has sentenced Kevin Williams, 39 of Baton Rouge, to life in prison for second degree murder and Alonzo Gonzales, 20 of Slidell to 40 years in prison for armed robbery.  The two men were sentenced Monday, March 1, 2010.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s cases. 

 

Williams was arrested July 14, 2008, by the Covington Police Department after an elderly female victim was found dead in her home.  Williams forged some of the victim’s checks and drove her car after the murder.  Williams DNA was found on the victim’s clothing.  Williams was recorded asking himself why he had killed the victim.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 6 minutes Wednesday afternoon, January 27, 2010, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.

 

Gonzales was arrested in August 2005 by the Slidell Police Department after a local restaurant employee was robbed at gun point in the store’s parking lot.  Gonzales believed the victim had the store deposit but she was carrying a bag of food.  Gonzales was found guilty as charged on Thursday August the 27, 2009, by a twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury after a 4 day trial.

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life in prison at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Armed robbery is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years.

 

 

March 1, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER

---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Leonard Burkholder, 28 of Slidell, pled guilty to manslaughter on Friday, February 26, 2010.  Burkholder was originally indicted for 2nd degree murder by a Grand Jury in 2006.  The victim’s family was present and agreed with the plea agreement.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Burkholder to 30 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Burkholder was arrested in July 2005 by the Slidell Police Department after an adult male victim died of a drug overdose in October 2004.  The victim overdosed on drugs sold to him by Burkholder.  Laboratory results also revealed the presence of other drugs in the victim’s body.

 

Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years.

 

 

February 24, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

WASHINGTON PARISH MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

 

FRANKLINTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Warren Pounds, 32 of Bogalusa, was found guilty Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010, of indecent behavior with a juvenile.  The six person jury deliberated 45 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case for the two day trial.

 

Pounds was arrested in January 2008 by the Bogalusa Police Department after the juvenile female victim’s mother told police of the sexual abuse.  The victim’s mother noticed the victim having discomfort and asked her if there was a problem.  The victim explained to her mother what had happened. 

 

Judge Childress will sentence Pounds on March 10, 2010.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 7 years.  If Pounds is found to be a habitual offender he could face up to 14 years in prison.  Pounds has a prior conviction for possession of cocaine while possessing a firearm in 2008.  

 

 

February 8, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jared Graham, 20 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for three hours Friday night, February 5, 2010, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

 

Graham was arrested in December 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he shot a male victim who died at the hospital. The victim had beaten Graham during a fight earlier in the day near a local Lacombe store.  Graham went home to get his weapons and relocated to the victim’s home.  Graham shot the victim with a 44 magnum pistol and two blasts from a shotgun. 

 

Judge Hand will sentence Graham March 25, 2010.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

January 29, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

ACCOMPLICE SENTENCED TO 40 YEARS IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain has sentenced Damon Caliste, 35, to life in prison and Darien Hinkel, 36, to 40 years in prison. The two Baton Rouge men were sentenced Friday night, January 22, 2010, after Judge Crain found them to be career criminals.  

 

Caliste and Hinkel were arrested on Wednesday, November 19, 2008, by the Slidell Police Department after a local business noticed that items were missing.  The store surveillance cameras revealed two men taking the items off the shelves on Tuesday, November 18, 2009.  The two men were identified and arrested the next day when they returned to the store to shop.

 

Caliste and Hinkel were found guilty as charged of theft on Wednesday, July 29th, 2009.

A 6 person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to Judge Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presented the states case in the 2 day trial.

 

Theft is punishable by not more than ten years in prison, however, Caliste and Hinkel faced from 20 years to life in prison due to their past convictions and the court finding them to be habitual offenders under the “three strikes” career criminal law.  Caliste has prior convictions in New Orleans for possession with intent to distribute cocaine in 1993, forgery in 1995, and armed robbery in 1996.  Hinkel has prior convictions in New Orleans for distribution of cocaine in 1994, possession of opium/opiates in 1999, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary in 2002.

 

 

 

January 28, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kevin Williams, 39 of Baton Rouge, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 6 minutes Wednesday afternoon, January 27, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. prepared and presented the State’s case in the three day trial.

 

Williams was arrested July 14, 2008, by the Covington Police Department after an elderly female victim was found dead in her home.  Williams forged some of the victim’s checks and drove her car after the murder.  Williams DNA was found on the victim’s clothing.  Williams was recorded asking himself why he had killed the victim. 

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

January 19, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

PEARL RIVER MAN FOUND GUILTY OF DWI

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports Clifford Watts, 44 of Pearl River, was found guilty as charged, January 14, 2009, of 3rd offense DWI.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 25 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Watts was arrested July 8, 2009, by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office in the Pearl River area.  A Deputy observed several empty beer cans in Watt’s vehicle. Watts testified that he had had a few beers, refused the breath test, and failed the standard field sobriety test.    

 

Judge Crain will sentence Watts February 3, 2010.  3rd offense dwi is punishable by imprisonment from 1 to 5 years.          

 

 

January 19, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MEN FOUND GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER

----FOUR VICTIMS----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kelvin Kaigler, 28 of Slidell, and James Bishop, 42 of Slidell, have been found guilty as charged of 4 counts of non capital first degree murder.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 6 hours, Friday, January 15, 2010, before returning the guilty verdict.  The Jury was selected on Wednesday January 6, 2010, with the trial beginning Monday, January 11, 2010.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Harold Bartholomew, Jr.

 

Bishop and Kaigler were arrested in August 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after four people were murdered on June 27, 2006, in Slidell.  Bishop and Kaigler were driven to the murder scene by Frank Knight who remained in the car while the murders took place.  Frank Knight pled guilty to accessory after the fact to first degree murder and testified against Bishop and Kaigler at the trial.  The murders were the result of the illegal drug business. 

 

Judge Coady will sentence Kaigler and Bishop on February 11, 2010.  Non capital first degree murder is punishable by life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

January 14, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

 

 COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Craig Wager, 39 of Abita Springs, was found guilty as charged, January 13th, 2010, of aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt.

 

Wager was arrested in January 2009 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a minor female victim told her mother about the sexual abuse.  The rape occurred while the victim and her younger brother were spending the night at the defendant’s home.

 

Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

January 14, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 1995 MURDERS

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ronald Bickham, 43 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of 2 counts of non capital first degree murder.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated an hour Wednesday afternoon, January 13, 2010, before returning the guilty verdicts to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. prepared and presented the State’s case in the three day trial.

 

Bickham was indicted in May 2008 by a St. Tammany Parish Grand Jury for this 1995 double murder while serving a 60 year prison sentence for a 1997 armed robbery conviction. The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office arrested Bickham in March 2008 for the 1995 crimes after a DNA match revealed Bickham’s blood on the female victim’s clothes.  The murders of the man and woman occurred just east of Covington. 

 

Judge Crain will officially sentence Bickham on February 3, 2010.  Non capital first degree murder is punishable by life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

January 12, 2010 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

---SENTENCED TO 35 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kimberlin Edwards, 41 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged, August 18, 2009, to vehicular homicide, possession of cocaine, and possession of marijuana. The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected before Edwards chose to plead guilty.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the plea and Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Edwards was arrested in October 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after she crashed her SUV into a man driving a motor operated scooter on Donya Street in Slidell.  The man died from his injuries.  Edwards was found to be impaired and cocaine and marijuana were found in her vehicle.

 

Judge Penzato sentenced Edwards to 35 years in prison on Monday, January 11, 2010.  Edwards was sentenced as a career criminal due to 3 prior convictions for possession of cocaine in 2005 and 3 counts of armed robbery in 1993 in New Orleans. 

 

Vehicular homicide is punishable by not less than 5 nor more than 30 years in prison.  Possession of cocaine is punishable by up to 5 years in prison. 

 

 

December 7, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

WASHINGTON PARISH MEN FOUND GUILTY OF ABUSE

 

FRANKLINTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the convictions of Ben Rester and Jonathan Gerald in separate trials last week before 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress.  Rester, 59 of Bogalusa, was found guilty December 1, 2009, of attempted cruelty to a juvenile and indecent behavior with a juvenile.  The six person jury deliberated 30 minutes before returning the guilty verdicts.  Gerald, 24 of Bogalusa, was found guilty December 3, 2009, of molestation of a juvenile.  The six person jury deliberated an hour and a half before returning the guilty verdict.  Assistant District Attorney Jay Adair was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case in each trial.

 

Rester was arrested in August 2007 by the Bogalusa Police Department after the male   and female victims told a counselor about the physical and sexual abuse that happened in 2004 and 2005.  Both victims testified during the trial.

 

Gerald was arrested in December 2006 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after the female victim disclosed the sexual abuse to her best friend.  The victim’s mother was notified and she reported the abuse to the police.

 

Judge Childress will sentence Rester and Gerald on February 3rd, 2010.  Indecent behavior with a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 7 years.  Attempted cruelty to a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years.

Molestation of a juvenile is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 1 nor more than 10 years.   

 

   

December 3, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE AND SECOND DEGREE BATTERY

---FACES UP TO 80 YEARS IN PRSION---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kelton Torregano, 34 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of forcible rape and second degree battery.  A 12 member St. Tammany Jury deliberated 3 1/2 hours Wednesday, December 2, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 3 day trial with the state’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr.

 

Torregano was arrested in January 2009 by the Slidell Police Department after he beat and raped his girl friend.  Torregano and the victim had an argument which resulted in the physical and sexual abuse.  The victim was able to escape to a family member’s home after the defendant fell asleep.  Family members took the victim to the hospital and the police were notified. 

 

Judge Coady will sentence Torregano on December 17,  2009.  Torregano faces from 20 up to 80 years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Torregano has a previous conviction in Georgia in July 1999 for burglary, stalking, false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a firearm, aggravated assault on a police officer, and simple battery.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

 

November 13, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Harold Jenkins, 76 of Abita Springs, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 40 minutes Thursday, November 12, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

 

Jenkins was arrested in July 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the female victim reported the sexual abuse to her mother.  The sexual abuse began when the victim was 20 years old in 2004.

 

Judge Crain sentenced Jenkins to life in prison.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor, without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

November 12, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN GUILTY OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY AND DRUG CHARGES

 --- COULD GET LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Andrew Galatas, 43 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of pornography involving juveniles and possession with intent to distribute marijuana.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Court Judge William Knight presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Galatas was arrested in April 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s office after it was reported to the FBI that Galatas’ computer contained child pornography.  A search of Galatas’ home revealed the child pornography on Galatas’ computer and also nearly a pound of marijuana.

 

Judge Knight will sentence Galatas on November 30, 2009. Galatas faces up to life in prison if found to be a career criminal. Galatas has prior convictions for molestation of a juvenile in 1999, possession of stolen property and issuing worthless checks in 1996, and possession of stolen property in 1987 in Orleans Parish.

 

Pornography involving juveniles is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Possession with intent to distribute marijuana is punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years.

 

 

November 10, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

ALABAMA MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Eric Buras, 31 of Irvington, Alabama, pled guilty as charged to second degree murder on Monday, September 28, 2009.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Buras to life in prison on Monday, October 26, 2009.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

  

Buras was arrested on December 28, 2005, by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a lifeless female victim was found on November 13, 2005, floating in the West Pearl River.  A truck driver traveling on interstate 59 called authorities after noticing the body in the water.  Buras brought the victim to Louisiana from Alabama on a day trip and bound the victim before drowning her in the river near the I-59 Pearl River turnaround. The out-of-state victim was later identified by a family member from Alabama after the press release.  Witnesses and crime scene evidence linked the defendant to the murder.  

 

Second degree murder is punishable by life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

October 21, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN SENTENCED TO JAIL FOR FOURTH OFFENSE DWI

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports Yilver Moradel Ponce, 38 of Covington, has been sentenced to 15 years in prison after being found guilty as charged of a fourth and subsequent offense DWI.  A 12 person St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict Friday August 28, 2009.  22nd Judicial District Judge Donald Fendlason presided over the case with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Ponce was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a traffic stop near Abita Springs.  Ponce smelled of alcohol and failed the standard field sobriety test.  Ponce also failed the chemical alcohol test administered at the police station.    

 

Judge Fendlason sentenced Ponce to the 15 years in prison yesterday October 20, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of a fourth and subsequent offense DWI shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than thirty years.   

          

October 30, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM

FOR SEX CRIMES

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Daniel Joseph Moore, 33 of Slidell, was sentenced yesterday, October 29, 2009 to three consecutive life sentences.  Moore was found guilty September 2, 2009 of 3 counts of aggravated rape and acquitted of 1 count of attempted aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Moore was arrested in May 2004 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a letter was found at a Slidell area school describing the sexual abuse.  The male victims ranged in age from 5 to 11 and the rapes occurred over an eight year period from 1996 to 2004.    

 

Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

October 29, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CHARGES

---SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Yultton Mendoza, 35 of Slidell, has pled guilty to attempted aggravated rape and attempted aggravated incest.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz accepted the guilty pleas on Monday, October 26, 2009.  Mendoza had originally been indicted for aggravated rape and aggravated incest.  The victims and their families agreed with the plea to the lesser charges.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Mendoza was arrested in August 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs office after a minor female victim reported the sexual abuse to her parents.  Another minor female victim confirmed that Mendoza had sexually abused her also. 

 

Judge Swartz sentenced Mendoza to 32 years in prison.  Attempted aggravated rape and attempted aggravated incest are punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than fifty years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

October 20, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER

---- JURY’S VERDICT IS DEATH PENALTY----

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Magee, 32 of Pearl River, has been found guilty as charged of 2 counts of first degree murder and 2 counts of attempted first degree murder.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours Saturday night, October 17, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  The Jury deliberated 3 hours on Monday evening, October 19, 2009, before deciding for the death penalty.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 8 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Ken Dohre.

 

Magee was arrested in April 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he murdered his 5 year old son and estranged wife and wounded one of his 2 young daughters.  Magee’s wife and 3 children were traveling in their vehicle near Mandeville when Magee forced them off the roadway and into a tree.  Magee shot his wife, son, and one daughter.  Magee fled to Alabama where he was arrested hours later.

 

Judge Knight will sentence Magee on Monday, November 30, 2009.  First degree murder is punishable by death or life in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Attempted first degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 10 nor more than 50 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

October 16, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

INMATE FOUND GUILTY OF 2ND DEGREE BATTERY

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Troy Batiste, 46 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of second degree battery.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict Thursday October 15, 2009, after one hour of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the 1 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the State’s case.

 

Batiste was observed beating a fellow prisoner in October 2008 while in jail awaiting sentencing for an August 2008, conviction for second degree battery and aggravated criminal damage to property.  Batiste and the other inmate were watching television when Batiste became angry at him for misuse of the remote control.  Batiste hit his fellow inmate several times knocking him unconscious. 

 

The August 2008 conviction stemmed from a road rage incident where Batiste rammed a motorist and beat him for allegedly cutting Batiste off in traffic.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand presided over that trial and Batiste was found guilty as charged on August 1, 2008.  Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr. presented the State’s case.  Sentencing is scheduled for October 28, 2009, and Batiste is facing life in prison as a career criminal.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Batiste November 13, 2009.  Batiste will face life in prison again if found to be a career criminal.  Batiste has prior convictions for disturbing the peace in 1999, second degree battery in 1991, aggravated battery in 1987, and illegal use of weapons in 1982

 

 

October 16, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF AGGRAVATED INCEST

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the conviction of Michael Anthony Wright, 38 of Lake Charles, for aggravated incest.  A 6 person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated Wednesday, October 14, 2009, for one hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the 3 day trial with the state’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr.

 

Wright was arrested in September 2007 by the Slidell Police Department after the victim told a family member about the sexual abuse.  The defendant and victim were staying in Slidell while attending Mardi Gras in February 2007 when the abuse took place.  Months after the abuse the victim was able to get away from Wright to stay with a family member where the abuse was disclosed and the Police were contacted.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Wright December 14, 2009.   Aggravated incest is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than nor more than 20 years in prison with or without hard labor.

          

 

October 16, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE

 

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that James Holts, 43 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of forcible rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Jury deliberated 2 hours Thursday October 15, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 3 day trial with the state’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew, Jr.

 

Holts was arrested in November 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported.  The female victim was asleep when Holts began sexually abusing her.  The victim awoke and screamed for Holts to stop but he continued with his hand over the victim’s mouth.  Another person in the trailer came to the victim’s aid and the police were called. 

 

Judge Coady will sentence Holts on November 4, 2009.  Holts will face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Holts has previous convictions for possession with intent to distribute prescription drugs in 2009, simple robbery in 2005, theft twice in 1986, and illegal possession of stolen things in 1984.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.    

 

 

October 15, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

---2 ACCOMPLICES PREVIOUSLY PROSECUTED---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jace Washington, 21 of Slidell, has been found guilty of manslaughter.  Washington was originally indicted for 2nd degree murder by a Grand Jury in 2007.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours Wednesday night October 14, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22d Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Special Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo and Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt.

 

Washington and three accomplices were arrested in May 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office for the murder of a male victim.  The shooting occurred near Slidell during a robbery attempt at a trailer that housed several workers.  One accomplice, Glen Carter, 19 of New Orleans, was found guilty as charged, August 4, 2008, and is serving a life sentence in prison.  Another accomplice, Edric Cooper, 21 of Slidell, pled guilty just before his trial was to begin to manslaughter on Monday, August 11, 2008.

The other alleged accomplice, Grant Gethers, 20 of New Orleans is awaiting trial on second degree murder charges.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Washington December 14, 2009.  Manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years. 

 

October 15, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

---WIFE GUILTY OF HELPING HUSBAND AVOID ARREST---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Frances Reed, 42 of Covington, was found guilty as charged of 2 counts of aggravated rape on September 11, 2009.  Frances Reed’s wife Sonja, 41 of Covington, pled guilty yesterday to 2 counts of accessory after the fact.

 

22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over Frances Reed’s trial in September with the states case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Joey Oubre and Julie Knight.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted Sonja Reed’s guilty plea and sentenced her to 6 years in prison.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case. 

 

Frances Reed was arrested in March 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported on May 6, 2005.  One of the victims told their school counselor about the abuse and the authorities were immediately notified.  Sonja Reed was arrested on May 20, 2005, for helping her husband avoid being arrested.    

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Frances Reed to life in prison October 8, 2009.  Aggravated Rape is punishable by life in prison at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Judge Badeaux sentenced Sonja Reed to 6 years in prison after she pled guilty to a multiple offender bill.  Sonja Reed has a prior conviction for prescription drug fraud in 2001.  Accessory after the fact is punishable with or without hard labor for not more than 5 years in prison.  

 

 

September 4, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

 

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Damien Dyson, 29 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated 45 minutes Thursday, September 4, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

 

Dyson was arrested in January 2008 by the Bogalusa Police Department after a male victim was found murdered on Redmond Street in north Bogalusa.  Dyson and the victim had argued earlier in the day and Dyson left the area.  Dyson returned hours later and shot the victim who died at the hospital.  The victim was trying to get away from Dyson as he was hit with the fatal bullet.  Eye witnesses to the murder testified during the trial.

 

Judge Childress will sentence Dyson September 22, 2009.  Second degree murder is punishable by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

September 3, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIMES

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Daniel Joseph Moore, 33 of Slidell, has been found guilty of 3 counts of aggravated rape.  Moore was acquitted of 1 count of attempted aggravated rape.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 3 hours Wednesday afternoon, September 2, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Moore was arrested in May 2004 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a letter was found at a Slidell area school describing the sexual abuse.  The male victims ranged in age from 5 to 11 and the rapes occurred over an eight year period from 1996 to 2004.    

 

Judge Penzato will sentence Moore on October 29, 2009.  Aggravated rape is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

August 18, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ranall Mauldin, 31 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of first degree murder without the death penalty.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated, August 18, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge A.J. Hand presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

 

Mauldin was arrested in February 2008 by the Bogalusa Police after a man was found murdered.  The victim was a paraplegic war veteran and was shot twice in the back of the head.  He was discovered with his wheelchair on top of him and his pockets turned inside out.  Mauldin threw the gun in the woods and used the victim’s ATM card to make withdrawals.  Mauldin confessed to the murder and showed Police where to find the gun and the ATM card.

 

Judge Hand will sentence Mauldin September 14, 2009.  First degree murder without the death penalty is punishable by or life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

August 18, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED AFTER JURY SELECTED

---COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Kimberlin Edwards, 41 of Slidell, to vehicular homicide and possession of cocaine and marijuana.  Edwards pled guilty after the jury was empanelled but before any testimony had been given.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea on Tuesday, August 18, 2009.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Edwards was arrested in October 2008 by the Louisiana State Police after a vehicle crash on Donya Street near Slidell.  Edwards lost control of her sport utility vehicle and ran over the victim who was riding on a handicap scooter.  The victim died at the scene.  Police found Edwards to be alcohol impaired and cocaine and marijuana in Edward’s vehicle.

 

Judge Penzato today sentenced Edwards to 17 years in prison for vehicular homicide, five years in prison for possession of cocaine, and six months in prison for possession of marijuana to run concurrently.  Judge Penzato could sentence Edwards to life in prison as a career criminal on September 22, 2009.  Edwards has prior convictions for armed robbery and attempted armed robbery in 1993 in New Orleans and possession of cocaine in 2005.  Vehicular homicide is punishable by imprisonment with or without hard labor for not less than five years nor more than thirty years. 

          

 

 

August 14, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

FOLSOM MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Edward “Eddie” McCray, 42 of Folsom, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour and a half Thursday, August 14th, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the 4 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight.

 

McCray was arrested in August 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a man died from head injuries.  McCray and the victim were in an argument over drugs near Folsom when McCray struck him several times with a hammer resulting in the victim’s death.  McCray forced a neighbor to drive him away from the scene but Deputies found him two days later in abandoned trailer in Tangipahoa Parish.

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence McCray September 29, 2009.  Second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

August 6, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY TWICE IN SEPARATE TRIALS

---COULD FACE 60 YEARS IN PRISON ---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Antoine Mills, 23 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged Tuesday, August 3rd and Wednesday August 4th, 2009.   Mills was found guilty on Tuesday of a felon in possession of a firearm and on Wednesday of possession with intent to distribute cocaine.  Two twelve member St. Tammany Parish Juries returned each guilty verdict in less than 20 minutes.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the trials with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s cases.

 

In the Tuesday case, Mills was arrested in January 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a traffic stop in which the Deputy observed a firearm in plain view.

In the Wednesday case, Mills was arrested at his home in January 2008 by the Slidell Police Department on a warrant for possession of a stolen firearm.  Crack cocaine and over three thousand dollars was found in a safe where the stolen firearm was located.   

 

A felon in possession of a firearm is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 5 nor more than 10 years.   Possession with intent to distribute cocaine is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 30 years.  Mills faces from 15 to 60 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Mills has a  prior conviction for carnal knowledge in 2007.

 

 

 

July 30, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO MEN FOUND GUILTY OF THEFT

--COULD FACE LIFE SENTENCES--

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that two Baton Rouge men, Damon Caliste, 35, and Darien Hinkel, 36, were found guilty as charged of theft on Wednesday July 29th, 2009.  A 6 person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 2 hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain.  Assistant District Attorney Nick Noriea, Jr. presented the states case in the 2 day trial.

 

Caliste and Hinkel were arrested on Wednesday, November 19, 2008, by the Slidell Police Department after a local business noticed that items were missing.  The store surveillance cameras revealed two men taking the items off the shelves on Tuesday, November 18, 2009.  The two men were identified and arrested the next day when they returned to the store to shop.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Caliste and Hinkel on September 28, 2009.  Theft is punishable by not more than ten years in prison, however, Caliste and Hinkel could face life in prison if Judge Crain finds them to be career criminals.  Caliste has prior convictions in New Orleans for possession with intent to distribute cocaine in 1993, forgery in 1995, and armed robbery in 1996.  Hinkel has prior convictions in New Orleans for distribution of cocaine in 1994, possession of opium/opiates in 1999, and conspiracy to commit simple burglary in 2002.

 

 

July 29, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO PORNOGRAPHY CHARGES

 --- GETS 20 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of George Bunch, 52 of Covington, to 7 counts of pornography involving juveniles and 3rd offense possession of marijuana.  22nd Judicial District Court Judge Richard Swartz accepted the guilty plea Tuesday, July 28, 2009, and sentenced Bunch to 20 years in prison as a career criminal.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Bunch was arrested in April 2009 by the Covington Police Department after a suspicious man was reported looking up pornography at the local library.  Bunch was located behind the library and was found to possess marijuana and sexually explicit writings involving juveniles.  Police found child pornography while searching Bunch’s living quarters. 

 

Judge Swartz sentenced Bunch to 20 years in prison as a career criminal for the pornography charges and 20 years in prison for the marijuana charge to be served concurrently.  Pornography involving juveniles is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 10 years in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Third offense marijuana possession is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.  Bunch has a prior conviction for obscenity in 2005 in East Baton Rouge Parish.

 

 

July 21, 2009


NEWS RELEASE

 

 

FRANKLINTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ATTEMPTED MURDER

----COULD FACE 100 YEARS----

 

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kenneth “Pickle” McClain, 22 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of attempted first degree murder of a Franklinton Policeman.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for one hour Friday, July 17th, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

 

McClain was arrested in September 2007 by the Franklinton Police after an officer was shot during a foot pursuit.  McClain ran from Police and fought with the officer that caught him.  McClain shot the officer and ran away.  The officer was temporarily immobilized by the bullet but has fully recovered and identified McClain as the shooter. 

 

Judge Childress will sentence McClain August 14, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted first degree murder of a policeman shall be punished by imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence for not less than 20 nor more than 50 years in prison.  If McClain is found to be a habitual offender he would face not less than 25 nor more than 100 years in prison.  McClain has a prior conviction for possession of cocaine in 2007. 

 

 

July 14, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

----FOURTH CONVICTION RESULTS IN LIFE SENTENCE ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Nicky Landor, 35 of Lacombe, was sentenced to life in prison Monday July 13, 2009, as a career criminal.  Landor was found guilty of manslaughter by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury Thursday evening May 28, 2009.  Landor was originally indicted by a Grand Jury in January 2007 for second degree murder.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Harold Batholomew, Jr.

 

Landor was arrested in October 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a man was killed by a gunshot near Lacombe.   Landor knew the male victim and the two became involved in an argument over money.  Landor produced a jack handle before the victim fired a warning shot and then the victim struck Landor with the gun.  The two began fighting and Landor took the gun from the victim.   Landor shot the victim in the leg as the gun jammed.  Landor cocked the gun and shot him again while he was on the ground killing him.

 

Judge Coady sentenced Landor June 18, 2009, to 25 years in prison manslaughter.  Landor was found to be a career criminal at his habitual offender hearing yesterday and was sentenced by Judge Coady to life in prison.  Landor has prior convictions for distribution of cocaine in 1998, issuing worthless checks in 1994, and second degree battery in 1993. 

 

 

June 22, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY IN ABSENCE

---COURT ISSUES WARRANT FOR HIS ARRREST---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Terry Allen, 24 of Covington, was found guilty as charged Tuesday, June 16, 2009, of distribution of cocaine. The court broke for lunch and the defendant did not return as the trial proceeded.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated about 20 minutes before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the one day trial and Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Allen was arrested in July 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after deputies video and audio taped Allen selling cocaine to an undercover policeman.  The buy took place in March 2008 in a local supermarket parking lot.  

 

Whoever commits the crime of distribution of cocaine shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two nor more than thirty years.  Jones faces 20 to 60 years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Jones has prior convictions for possession of cocaine in 2003 and aggravated flight in 2007.

 

 

June 4, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

JURY CAN’T DECIDE IN SEXUAL BATTERY CASE

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that a mistrial was declared by 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux in the State versus Jacinto Martinez.  Martinez, 75 of Slidell, was arrested in December 2007 for sexual battery by Slidell Police Department after a child victim told her mother about the alleged sexual abuse.  Deliberations of a six member St. Tammany Parish Jury resulted in the mistrial.  The jurors reported they could not reach a unanimous verdict.

 

A decision as to whether to retry the case has not been made. 

 

 

June 3, 2009  

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEX CRIME

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Charles E. Howard, 59 of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated oral sexual battery.  Howard also faces a charge of molestation of a juvenile.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 50 minutes Tuesday evening, June 2, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the two day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Scott Gardner.

 

Howard was arrested in February 2002 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the female victim reported the sexual abuse to her mother.  The sexual abuse began when the victim was 6 years old in 1991 and continued until the victim was 13 years old in 1998.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Howard on July 28, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated oral sexual battery shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence, for not more than twenty years.

 

May 29, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

----COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON ----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Nicky Landor, 35 of Lacombe, has been found guilty of manslaughter.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated three hours Thursday evening May 28, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  Landor was originally indicted by a Grand Jury in January 2007 for second degree murder.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Harold Batholomew, Jr.

 

Landor was arrested in October 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a man was killed by a gunshot near Lacombe.   Landor knew the male victim and the two became involved in an argument over money.  Landor produced a jack handle before the victim fired a warning shot and then the victim struck Landor with the gun.  The two began fighting and Landor took the gun from the victim.   Landor shot the victim in the leg as the gun jammed.  Landor cocked the gun and shot him again while he was on the ground killing him.

 

Judge Coady will sentence Landor June 18, 2009.  Whoever commits manslaughter shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than forty years.  Landor could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Landor has prior convictions for distribution of cocaine in 1998, issuing worthless checks in 1994, and second degree battery in 1993. 

 

 

May 26, 2009

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

SCHOOL PROJECT

COVINGTON FAKE ROBBERY CHARGES DISMISSED

 

 

District Attorney Walter Reed reports that the charges filed against several Covington High School students and a local store owner have been dismissed.  The students were working on a film project assigned to them by a teacher at Covington High.  The fake robbery was staged at a local Covington jewelry store when a passing motorist observed and reported the incident as the students were acting out their roles for the film project.  The Covington Police Department responded appropriately and secured the scene.  The District Attorney has reviewed the violations submitted by the police department and has dismissed all charges based upon insufficient evidence.

 

 

May 22, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---COULD FACE 198 YEARS IN PRISON---

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Larry Mitchell, 37 of New Orleans, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery. A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated one hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict Thursday, May 21, 2009.   22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 2 day trial with Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre presenting the State’s case.   

Mitchell was arrested in June 2008 by the Slidell and New Orleans Police Departments after a local Slidell convenience store was robbed.  An employee observed Mitchell use a garbage bag to take items from the store and grabbed the bag from Mitchell outside the store.  Mitchell brandished his gun, took the bag from the employee, and fled. The employee observed the license plate and the getaway car was found in New Orleans.

During the trial, a witness in the case reported to D.A. Investigator Louis Dabdoub that a man was making threats just outside the trial courtroom.  After further investigation, the man was arrested and ordered by Judge Garcia to be held without bail.   

Judge Garcia will sentence Mitchell June 17, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 10 to 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Mitchell will face from 50 to 198 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Mitchell has prior convictions in New Orleans for theft in 2003 and drugs in 1994.

 

 

May 20, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY IN VEHICLE CRASH

---COULD FACE UP TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- The 22nd Judicial District Attorney Office reports that Ghazir Lacayo, 39 of Slidell, has been found guilty of aggravated criminal damage to property.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict Tuesday afternoon, May 19, 2009, after one hour of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Karen Middleton presenting the State’s case.

 

Lacayo was arrested in June 2006 by the Slidell Police Department after he intentionally rammed his super duty Ford 350 pickup truck into two vehicles at a local business in the Slidell area.  Lacayo ran into a Volvo driven by his ex wife and pushed it into another one.  Lacayo jump out of his vehicle and pulled his ex wife from her badly damaged Volvo began hitting and screaming at her.

 

District Attorney Walter Reed commented, “this type of violent behavior has no place in our world….people must learn to work out problems peacefully.”

 

Judge Crain will sentence Lacayo Wednesday May 20, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated criminal damage to property shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not less than one nor more than fifteen years.  If Lacayo is found to be a career criminal his sentence would be from 15 years to 30 years in prison.  Lacayo has a prior conviction for aggravated battery in 1992.      

 

 

May 20, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SEXUAL BATTERY

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Donald Searcy, 61 of Slidell, has been found guilty of sexual battery.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict Wednesday evening, May 13, 2009, after two hours of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight presenting the State’s case.

 

Searcy was arrested in December 2008 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs office after an adult female victim reported the sexual abuse.  The incident occurred at a local business in the Slidell area.  Searcy grabbed the victim from behind and rubbed her in an inappropriate sexual manner.

 

Judge Badeaux sentenced Searcy Wednesday May 20, 2009, to 3 years in prison and further ordered Searcy to complete a sex offender program and register as a sex offender.  Whoever commits the crime of sexual battery shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence, for not more than 10 years.   

 

 

May 19, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CHARGE

---FACES 25 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John Skias, 80 of Mandeville, has pled guilty as charged to aggravated incest.  22nd Judicial District Judge A. J. Hand accepted the guilty plea on Monday May 18, 2009 as the case was going to trial.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Skias was arrested in June 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs office after a minor female victim reported the sexual abuse to her father.

 

Judge Hand will sentence Skias August 4, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated incest of a victim under the age of 13 years shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 25 years up to life in prison.  At least 25 years must serve without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.   

 

 

 

May 18, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

CHILD RAPIST SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON PLUS 20             

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dino Jay Schwertz, 42 of Slidell, was sentenced on Friday May 15, 2009, to life in prison for aggravated rape and twenty years in prison for molestation of a juvenile.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain sentenced Schwertz and also ordered the sentences to be served consecutively.  Schwertz was found guilty as charged of aggravated rape and molestation of a juvenile April 2, 2009 by a twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury.  Victim impact statements were heard in court prior to the sentencing.  Judge Crain presided over the four day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Karen Middleton.

 

Schwertz was arrested in March 2008 by the Slidell Police Department after the two minor male victims reported the sexual abuse to their parents.  The abuse took place between September and December 2007 at the victims’ school where Schwertz was employed as a janitor.

 

Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of molestation of a juvenile shall be punished by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 1 nor more than 20 years in prison.

 

 

 

May 12, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF AGGRAVATED BATTERY

----COULD FACE 10 YEARS IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Richard Pramann, 48 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated battery.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated into Monday evening May 11, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the one day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre.

 

Pramann was arrested in January 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after a male adult victim was taken to the hospital with knife wounds.  Pramann and the victim were at the defendant’s house in Covington when they began fighting.  Pramann stabbed the victim with the knife before the victim ran out and back to his home next door.

 

Judge Knight will sentence Pramann July 8, 2008.  Whoever commits aggravated battery shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, imprisoned for at hard labor for not more than ten years, or both.

 

 

May 8, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 CAREER CRIMINAL FOUND GUILTY OF ROBBERY

---FACES LIFE IN PRISON---

 

Covington---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jason Walstrum, 39 of Mandeville, was found guilty of two counts of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict after 25 minutes of deliberation Thursday, May 7, 2009.  22nd Judicial District Judge Rick Swartz presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the States case.  

 

Walstrum was arrested in July 2008 by the Mandeville Police Department after employees at a local Mandeville restaurant were robbed at gun point.  Walstrum threatened to spray the restaurant with bullets if anyone tried to follow him.  The sobbing victims identified the defendant in court and told how they feared for their lives.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Walstrum June 23, 2009.  Walstrum could face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Walstrum has prior convictions for intent to sell drugs in 2006 in Mississippi, burglary and aggravated assault in 1994 in Florida, and grand theft in Florida in 1991.

 

     

May 8, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WOMAN FOUND GUILTY IN TWO CAR CRASH

--COULD FACE 10 YEARS IN PRISON—

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Callan Gill, 24 of Bush, has been found guilty as charged of first degree vehicular negligent injuring.  A six member St. Tammany Jury returned the guilty verdict May 6, 2009 after 20 minutes of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz presided over the one day trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting of the states case.

 

Gill was arrested in May 2008 by the Louisiana State Police after a two vehicle crash on Fish Hatchery Road north of U.S. highway 190 near Lacombe.  Gill crossed the center line and hit the victim’s vehicle head on.  Gill was found to be impaired from the use of alcohol.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Gill May 23, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of first degree vehicular negligent injuring shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than five years.  Gill could face 10 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Gill has a prior conviction for illegal possession of prescription drugs in 2004.  Gill is also awaiting trial for a 2006 arrest for possession of cocaine that could lengthen her prison sentence further.

 

          

April 30, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

LOCAL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF THREE FELONIES

---FACES UP TO 198 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gary Wayne Slaydon, Jr., 27 of Pear River, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery, attempted second degree murder and aggravated burglary.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Wednesday afternoon, April 29, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Julie Knight.

 

Slaydon and an accomplice, Paul Gafford, 23 of Slidell, were arrested in November 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a Slidell man was beaten with a stick and robbed in his home. The victim sustained serious injuries but was able to escape by swimming across a bayou to a neighbor’s home.  Gafford pled guilty as charged in November 2008 and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Slaydon May 20, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned from 10 to 99 years, attempted second degree murder from 10 to 50 years and aggravated burglary for not more than 30 years.  If Slaydon is found to be a career criminal for his armed robbery conviction he will be imprisoned from 491/2 to 198 years.  Slaydon has prior convictions for simple escape and unauthorized use of motor vehicle in 2003 and burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2002.

 

 

April 28, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

---SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Vasilios Pappas, 46 of Slidell, to three counts of second degree sexual battery, two counts of second degree kidnapping, four counts of false imprisonment with a dangerous weapon, five counts of aggravated battery and one count of second degree battery. 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea on Monday, April 27, 2009, after hearing from two victims in open court.  The victims both said that they were satisfied with the plea versus going to trial.  Assistant District Attorneys Joey Oubre and Gerry Alonzo were in charge of the preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Pappas was arrested in October 2004 by Slidell Police after an adult female victim complained that Pappas had sexually and physically abused her.  Two other adult female victims came forward after hearing of the arrest to complain that they too were abused by the defendant.  The fourth adult female victim made a complaint in March 2008.  Pappas and the victims had a normal relationship initially and then it would degenerate into sexual and physical abuse.   

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Pappas to 15 years in prison for each count of second degree sexual battery, 15 years in prison for each count of second degree kidnapping, 10 years in prison for each count of false imprisonment with a deadly weapon, 10 years in prison for each count of aggravated battery and 5 years in prison for one count of second degree battery.  Judge Garcia ordered the sentences to be served concurrently and that Pappas must register as a sex offender upon release from prison.

 

 

April 21, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

LACOMBE MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

---SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Troy Kilroy, 33 of Lacombe, to vehicular homicide and possession of hydrocodone.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea on Tuesday, April 21, 2009, and heard victim impact statements from the victim’s family before sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Kilroy was arrested in July 2008 by the Louisiana State Police after a single vehicle crash on Louisiana highway 435 near Abita Springs.  Kilroy was traveling southbound in a Toyota Camry near mile marker 3.4 when he lost control of his vehicle and ran into a cement bridge rail.  A 32 year old male front seat passenger was ejected from the vehicle and later died after being transported to a local hospital.  Kilroy was found to be impaired from the use of alcohol and prescription drugs.

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Kilroy to 20 years in prison with 14 years being suspended.  Kilroy must serve the remaining 6 years in prison with 5 of those years to be served without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  Kilroy will be placed on supervised probation upon release from prison and must complete a court appointed substance abuse program, and have an interlock device installed on his vehicle.  Judge Garcia sentenced Kilroy to 5 years for possession of hydrocodone with the sentences to be served concurrently.

 

Whoever commits the crime of vehicular homicide shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than five years nor more than thirty years.  Whoever commits the crime of possession of hydrocodone shall be imprisoned for not more than 5 years.

          

April 15, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO HAMMOND MEN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERMS FOR

ARMED ROBBERY

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Willard Brumfield, 31, and Tyronne Morris, 25, both of Hammond, pled guilty as charged February 2, 2009, to armed robbery.  22nd Judicial District Judge Richard Swartz set the sentencing for Brumfield and Morris for Wednesday, April 15, 2009.  The victims of the armed robbery gave victim impact statements to the court prior to Judge Swartz sentencing Brumfield to 50 years in prison and Morris to 15 years in prison.  The states case was prepared and presented by Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt.

 

Brumfield and Morris were arrested in June 2008 by the Louisiana State Police after a Mandeville loan business was robbed at gun point.  Brumfield was armed with a pistol as he and Morris entered the business and demanded money from the employees.  The robbers took the money in a blue bank bag and got away in a red Ford Expedition.  State Troopers heard the description of the getaway car on the radio and identified the red Ford Expedition heading west on I-12 near Robert.  The traffic stop was made and a blue bank bag and pistol were found.  The two occupants were identified by the victims. 

 

Morris and Brumfield must serve their sentences at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 10 to 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

 

April 9, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

BUSH MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED AFTER PROSECUTION RESTS

 ---GETS 25 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Gregory Dean Cowart, 42 of Bush, to aggravated burglary, two counts of indecent behavior with juveniles, 6 counts of voyeurism, and 4 counts of peeping tom.  22nd Judicial District Court Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea Wednesday, April 8, 2009, after the trial had been in progress for three days.  The prosecution had rested when the defendant decided to plead guilty as charged.  Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Harold Bartholomew, Jr. were in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Cowart was arrested in September 2007 by the Covington Police Department after he was caught near a home that had reported an intruder.  Police found Cowart’s vehicle in a nearby parking and arrested him as he drove away.  A knife was found in the vehicle that was taken from the complainant home.       

 

Judge Coady sentenced Cowart as a career criminal to 25 years in prison at hard labor for aggravated burglary, a total of 24 years in prison for the two counts of indecent behavior with juveniles, and 6 months in prison for each of the 6 counts of voyeurism and 4 counts of peeping tom.  Cowart has 4 prior convictions from 1997 to 2005 in Florida for burglary, prowling, resisting arrest, and aggravated assault.  All sentences were ordered to be served concurrently.     

 

Whoever commits the crime of aggravated burglary shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than one year nor more than thirty years.  Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with a juvenile shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two years nor more than twenty-five years. 

 

 

April 8, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED CRIMINAL

DAMAGE TO PROPERTY WHERE LIFE IS ENDANGERED

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tony Lambert, 36 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of four counts of aggravated criminal damage to property and one count of illegal use of a weapon.  Lambert was found not guilty of two counts of attempted first degree murder.  Judge Martin Coady heard the case Wednesday, March 17, 2009, and Thursday, March 18, 2009, and rendered his verdict Wednesday April 8, 2009. The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Joey Oubre.

 

Lambert was arrested in March 2006 by the Covington Police Department after shots were fired outside a local restaurant in downtown Covington.   Lambert was subdued immediately after he had fired rifle rounds into the side of the restaurant building and vehicles parked nearby. 

 

Judge Coady ordered a pre-sentence investigation from probation and parole and will sentence Lambert May 18, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated criminal damage to property shall be fined not more than ten thousand dollars, imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than one nor more than fifteen years or both.  Whoever commits the crime of illegal use of a weapon shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than twenty years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

April 3, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE AND

MOLESTATION OF A JUVENILE

---FACES MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON---

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Dino Jay Schwertz, 42 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape and molestation of a juvenile.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 1/2 hours Thursday afternoon, April 2, 2009, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Crain presided over the four day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Karen Middleton.

 

Schwertz was arrested in March 2008 by the Slidell Police Department after the two minor male victims reported the sexual abuse to their parents.  The abuse took place between September and December 2007 at the victims’ school where Schwertz was employed as a janitor.

 

Judge Crain will sentence Schwertz on May 13, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of molestation of a juvenile under age 13 shall be punished by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than 25 years and up to life in prison. 

 

 

 

March 19, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

BOGALUSA MOTHER FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

----VICTIM IS HER THREE MONTH OLD SON----

 

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Lakeisha Adams, 22 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about four hours Saturday, March 14th, 2009, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

 

Adams was arrested in December 2005 by the Bogalusa Police for the murder of her son.  Adams placed the baby in her clothes dryer where the child died of head trauma and burns.  Adams pled not guilty by reason of insanity after she initially told police that she had seen someone else come into her home and commit the crime. 

 

Judge Burris will sentence Adams Wednesday, March 25th, 2009.  Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

March 6, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO DRUG CHARGES

---SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Zachary Martin, 33 of Covington, to distribution of cocaine.  A 12 person St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected and evidence presented before Martin decided to plead guilty as charged Thursday March 5, 2009.  22nd Judicial District Judge Allison Penzato accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Martin to 20 years in prison at hard labor.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Martin and three others were arrested by St. Tammany Sheriffs Deputies in July 2007 near Covington after they were recorded selling cocaine.  Martin was the driver of the vehicle that was observed fronting the cocaine to a street middleman, Sally Miley, 53 of Covington.  Miley sold the illegal drugs to undercover agents.  Miley pled guilty to distribution of cocaine April 28, 2008, and was sentenced to 5 years in prison.  The two other passengers in Martin’s car were James Davidson, 19 of Covington, and Darren Cousan, Jr., 24 of Abita Springs.  Davidson pled guilty to possession of marijuana September 16, 2008, and was sentenced to 6 months in jail.  Cousan failed to appear for his trial date and a warrant has been issued for his arrest. 

 

Whoever commits the crime of distribution of cocaine shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two nor more than thirty years.   

 

 

February 6, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

 CAREER CRIMINAL FOUND GUILTY OF DRUG CHARGE

---FACES LIFE IN PRISON---

 

 

Covington---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Wyrick Tyson, 30 of Mandeville, was found guilty of possession of cocaine.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict after 9 minutes of deliberation Thursday, February 5, 2009.  22nd Judicial District Judge Rick Swartz presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the States case. 

 

Tyson was arrested on July 31, 2007, by St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Deputies at his residence in Mandeville after he was caught on video and audio recordings making an illegal drug transaction in April 2007.  When Deputies went to arrest Tyson they found cocaine in Tyson’s possession.

 

Judge Swartz will sentence Tyson March 16, 2009.  Tyson could face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Tyson has prior convictions for possession of marijuana in 2002 and burglary in 1996.

 

 

February 5, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO DRUG CHARGES

WHILE JURY WAS DELIBERATING

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tristan Laurent, 23 of Slidell, has pled guilty as charged to possession with intent to distribute marijuana.  Laurent’s guilty plea came Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009, while the Jury was in its 5th hour of deliberation.  22nd Judicial District Judge Rick Swartz accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Laurent to 12 years in prison at hard labor.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Laurent was arrested in March 2008 after a traffic stop was conducted by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.  Deputies found 45 grams of marijuana hidden on the defendant and in the defendant’s vehicle.  Deputies also found a set of scales in the defendant’s vehicle.

 

Whoever commits the crime of possession with intent to distribute marijuana shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than thirty years and pay a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars. 

 

 

January 26, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO MEN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED

----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Stacey Barsock, 33 of Slidell, and Zachary Martin, 32 of Covington, were both found guilty as charged in separate trials last week.

 

Barsock was found guilty on Friday, January 23, 2009, of possession of cocaine, battery of a police officer and resisting arrest.  Barsock was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office on July 18, 2007 after deputies observed Barsock drop cocaine to the ground.  Barsock became combative as deputies arrested him.   22nd Judicial District Judge Rick Swartz presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the States case. Whoever commits the crime of possession of cocaine shall be imprisoned up to five years and required to pay a fine of up to five thousand dollars. Barsock could face life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Basock has prior convictions for simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 2005, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 2005, and aggravated battery in 1996.

 

Martin was found guilty on Wednesday, January 21, 2009, of aggravated flight from an officer and possession of marijuana.  Martin was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office on July 6, 2008, after he fled the scene of a traffic stop June 30, 2008.    Martin refused to pull over and deputies finally stopped Martin’s car after a chase and crash. Martin dropped a bag of drugs as he ran from the scene on foot.  22nd Judicial District Judge Rick Swartz presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the States case.  Whoever commits aggravated flight from an officer shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than two years.  Martin is facing up to 4 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Martin has a prior convictions for second degree battery in 2007, illegal possession of stolen things in 1999, aggravated flight from an officer in 1999, simple criminal damage to property in 1999, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle in 1999, and aggravated battery in 1999.

  

 

Both defendants will be sentenced by Judge Swartz on February 27, 2009. 

 

 

January 9, 2009 

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO SLIDELL MEN PLEAD GUILTY AS CHARGED

---BOTH SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty pleas of Trevon Miller, 26, to attempted second degree murder and Damien McDaniels, 28, to forcible rape. 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty pleas on Monday, January 5, 2009, with Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre in charge of preparation and presentation of the states cases.

 

Miller was arrested in August 2008 by Slidell Police after he shot his girlfriend’s father with a hand gun.  The victim was parked in his van at his sister’s house in Slidell in May 2008 when Miller and his girlfriend arrived.  The victim left the van as Miller approached with a gun hidden by a towel.  Miller shot at the victim hitting him in the leg.  The victim made it to the hospital where the shooting was reported to the police.

 

McDaniels was arrested in Brookhaven, Mississippi, in January 2008 after he raped a female victim near Slidell.  The victim was in town visiting friends when McDaniels arrived at the trailer in August 2007.  The victim’s friends went inside to sleep and left McDaniels and the victim alone.  McDaniels sexually assaulted the victim who was able to finally get away and wake up her friends.  McDaniels fled to Mississippi while the victim went to the hospital and called police. 

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Miller to 15 years in prison without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence and sentenced McDaniels to 15 years in prison with 2 years to be served without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  Attempted second degree murder is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than fifty years in prison without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Forcible rape is punishable by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years in prison with at least two years to be served without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.       

 

 

December 4, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY    OF

MADISONVILLE MAYOR

----Could Face 198 Years in Prison----

 

           

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Charles Holcombe, 32 of Covington, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery of Mayor Peter Gitz, 73 of Madisonville.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than an hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict Thursday, November 20, 2008.   22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the trial with Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall presenting the State’s case.   

Holcombe was arrested at a traffic stop by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office in June 2006 after Mayor Gitz had been beaten and robbed.  Gitz was closing his Madisonville restaurant for the day when Holcombe attacked him with a blunt instrument and took his wallet.  Gitz spent time in the hospital and endured surgery to recover from his injuries. 

In addition, Holcombe had illegals drugs in his vehicle when arrested at the traffic stop.  Holcombe was found guilty in October 2007 for possession of those drugs and was sentence to 5 years in prison October 22, 2007.

Judge Knight will sentence Holcombe on December 10, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 10 to 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Holcombe could face sentencing from 49 ½ to 198 years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Holcombe was convicted of aggravated battery in 1998.

  

December 4, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

BUSH MAN FOUND GUILTY OF OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE

----INVOLVED IN MURDER COVER-UP----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Zlatco “Zack” Brujic, 33 of Bush, has been found guilty as charged of obstruction of justice.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than an hour Wednesday, November 19, 2008, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Bruce Dearing.

 

Brujic was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office in connection with the 2001 murder of a female victim near Mandeville.  Brujic used his vehicle to transport the killer out of the area.

 

Judge Childress will sentence Brujic December 16, 2008.  Whoever commits obstruction of justice that involves a murder shall be imprisoned for up to 40 years at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.  If Brujic is found to be a habitual offender he could face 20 to 80 years in prison.  Brujic was convicted of a felony drug charge in 2004, theft in 1998, and illegal possession of stolen things in 1998 all in Jefferson Parish. 

 

 

 

November 6, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

22ND DISTRICT COURT HAS BUSY WEEK

---THREE MEN FOUND GUILTY----ONE MAN PLEADS GUILTY---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Troy Jordan, 38 of Lafayette, Eddie Negron, 29 of Lacombe, and Randy Carson, 46 of Folsom, were all found guilty as charged in separate jury trials last week.  Juan Toledo, 26 of Pearl River, pled guilty as charged prior to the start of the trial.

 

Jordan was found guilty as charged on Wednesday, October 29th, 2008, of possession of cocaine.  Jordan was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in November 2007 after the defendant was observed trying to discard cocaine as the police approached.  Jordan and others were exiting a suspected cocaine distribution trailer when confronted by the police.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the one day trial with Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing presenting the States case.  Judge Burris will sentence Jordan November 24, 2008.  He faces 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Jordan has prior convictions for possession with intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana in 2004, possession with intent to distribute marijuana in 2000, attempted first degree murder in 1996, and illegal possession of stolen things in 1988. 

 

Negron was found guilty as charged on Thursday, October 30th, 2008, of battery of a correctional facility officer.  Negron was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in September 2007 after he struck a jailer at the St. Tammany Parish Jail.  Judge William Burris presided over the one day trial while Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State’s case.  Negron faces 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Negron has prior convictions for burglary of an inhabited dwelling in 1999 and 1997, aggravated battery in 1997, simple burglary in 1997, and unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 1997.   

 

Carson was found guilty as charged on Friday, October 31st, 2008, of possession of cocaine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, and clonazepam.  Carson was arrested by the Covington Police in June 2007 after his vehicle rear ended another vehicle.  Illegal drugs were found in Carson’s trunk after a search by police.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the one day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.  If Carson is found to be a career criminal he could face 20 years to life in prison.  Carson’s prior convictions include possession of cocaine in 2000 and distribution of chemicals in Florida in 1999.  He also has numerous other Florida convictions and the state of Louisiana will file appropriate habitual offender charges on this defendant.

 

Toledo pled guilty as charged to vehicular homicide on Monday October 27, 2008.  22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green accepted the guilty plea and set sentencing for December 15, 2008.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.  Toledo was arrested by the Louisiana State Police in August 2006 after the passenger in his car was killed due to a crash.  Toledo’s car sideswiped another car and then plunged off the twin spans into Lake Pontchartrain near Slidell.  Toledo’s drug test revealed that he was driving under the influence of controlled dangerous substances.  Whoever commits the crime of vehicular homicide shall be fined not less than two thousand dollars nor more than fifteen thousand dollars and shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than two years nor more than thirty years.  At least one year of the sentence of imprisonment shall be imposed without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.     

 

 

 

November 6, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY OF CRUELTY TO A JUVENILE

---Experts Testify Regarding “Shaken Baby Syndrome”---

 

 

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Julius Joseph “Jay” Smith, 35 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree cruelty to a juvenile.  A 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Friday, October 31, 2008, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Smith was arrested in December 2005 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office for the physical abuse of a 2 ½ year old male victim.  The offense took place on November 7, 2005, near Bogalusa while the defendant was babysitting the victim.  The victim suffered from “shaken baby syndrome” and was rushed unconscious to the hospital in Bogalusa and then to Children’s Hospital in New Orleans for surgery.  The child has permanent injuries due to this incident.

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Smith December 1, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of second degree cruelty to a juvenile shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than forty years.

 

 

 

September 25, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

SLIDELL MAN’S PRISON SENTENCE INCREASED

-----CAREER CRIMINAL GETS 90 YEARS -----

 

 

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Douglas Smith, 34 of Slidell, was sentenced September 18, 2008, to 90 years in prison at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia handed down the increased sentence after Smith was found to be a career criminal resulting from his habitual offender hearing.  Smith was originally sentenced to 30 years in prison in December 2007 after being found guilty in November 2007 of attempted first degree robbery and three counts of armed robbery.   A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated ninety minutes before returning the guilty verdict to Judge Garcia.  The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

 

Smith was arrested in November 2006 by Slidell Police after a four day crime spree.  Smith robbed three people at gunpoint and attempted to rob someone else by threatening to have a gun before a victim was able to identify him from a picture in a yearbook.  Police spotted Smith in a vehicle and gave chase arresting him after it crashed.

 

Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 10 years and for not more than 99 years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted first degree robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 20 years.  Smith qualified as a career criminal due to prior convictions in 2001 for possession of schedule I drugs and fourth offense DWI. 

 

 

 

September 18, 2008

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO ARMED ROBBERY

---GETS 35 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

 

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Mack Powe, Jr., 22 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to armed robbery Thursday, September 18, 2007.  The guilty plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux after the jury was impaneled.  Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Leigh Anne Wall were in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case. 

 

Powe and an accomplice, Sydni Abernathy, 22 of Slidell, were arrested by Slidell Police in March 2008 after Powe used a pistol to rob a customer at a Slidell truck stop.  Powe texted Abernathy, a cashier at the truck stop, to see if she thought he could come in and rob the customer.  Abernathy allegedly sent a text reply to Powe telling him to proceed.  Abernathy is awaiting trial on armed robbery charges.

 

Judge Badeaux sentenced Powe to 35 years in prison at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence for armed robbery.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 10 nor more than 99 years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

September 11, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

LACOMBE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

---FACES MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON---

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John R. Crumholt, 58 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours Wednesday afternoon, September 10, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Patricia Hedges presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Ken Dohre and Gerald Alonzo.

 

Crumholt was arrested in March 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the minor female victim reported the sexual abuse to a family friend.  The victim’s mother took the victim to the hospital and reported the incident to the police.  The sexual abuse occurred from 2003 to 2007.

 

Judge Hedges will sentence Crumholt on November 5, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

September 4, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

ALABAMA MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joseph A. Martin, 33 of Shelby, Alabama, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 1 hour Thursday August 31, 2008, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Martin was arrested on September 8, 2006, by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office for the murder of a male victim near Slidell.  The victim was struck several times in the head with a hammer causing massive injuries and then death.  Drug usage was a major factor in the crime.  The lifeless victim was found Wednesday, August 23, 2006, by family members at a storage facility after a four day search.  Martin was arrested sixteen days later in Mississippi. 

 

Judge Knight will sentence Smith October 13, 2008.  Whoever commits second degree murder shall be imprisoned for life at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

August 26, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

WASHINGTON PARISH MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

---SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Troy Seeger, 43 of Franklinton, to vehicular homicide and vehicular negligent injuring.  Seeger also pled guilty to possession of a control dangerous substance by fraud in a separate case.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty pleas on Monday, August 25th, 2008, and heard a victim impact statement from the victim’s family before sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Joey Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Seeger was arrested in August 2005 by Causeway Police after a two vehicle crash on the Causeway.  Seeger was traveling north bound in a van near mile marker 19 when he ran into the back of a car that was moving slowly due to a flat tire.  The driver of the car died and a passenger was injured due to the collision.  Seeger was found to be driving under the influence of drugs.  Seeger was arrested in April 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after a federal investigation revealed that he gained possession of controlled drugs by fraud in March 2005.    

 

Judge Garcia sentenced Seeger to 25 years in prison with 5 years to be served without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence for vehicular homicide, 5 years in prison for vehicular negligent injuring, and 5 years in prison for possession of a controlled dangerous substance by fraud.  Judge Garcia ordered the sentences to be served concurrently. 

 

 

 

 

August 12, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

NEW ORLEANS MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

---ACCOMPLICE PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Glen Carter, 18 of New Orleans, has been found guilty as charged of 2nd degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 14 hours before returning the guilty verdict Saturday Morning at 2 A.M.  22d Judicial District Judge William Burris presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Special Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo.

 

Carter and three accomplices were arrested in May 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office for the murder of a male victim.  The shooting occurred near Slidell during a robbery attempt at a trailer that housed several workers.  One accomplice, Edric Cooper, 20 of Slidell, pled guilty to manslaughter on Monday, August 11, 2008, before his trial was scheduled to begin.  The two other alleged accomplices, Grant Gethers, 19 of New Orleans, and Jace Colby Washington, 20 of Slidell, are awaiting trial on second degree murder charges.

 

Judge Burris will sentence Carter September 12, 2008.  Whoever commits 2nd degree murder shall be imprisoned for life without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.  No date has been set for Cooper to be sentenced for manslaughter.  Whoever commits manslaughter shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than forty years.

 

 

 

August 8, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

---SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty pleas of Rickey Odom, 37 of Alabaster, Alabama, to forcible rape and attempted forcible rape.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty pleas on Friday August 8, 2008, and sentenced Odom to 15 years in prison on each charge.  Odom was originally charged with aggravated rape and attempted aggravated rape.  The female victim, now 19, agreed with the plea agreement  and made a victim impact statement.  Judge Childress ordered the sentences to run concurrently.   Assistant District Attorney Ken Dohre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Odom was arrested in July 2003 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse was reported by the victim’s mother.  The victim was afraid to report the abuse that happened in late March and early April 2003 until the defendant had fled to Alabama.  The U.S. Marshall’s Service caught Odom in Alabama and returned him to Louisiana.

 

Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more that 20 years. 

 

 

 

August 7, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

TWO MEN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Marty Lee, 45 of Lumberton, Mississippi, and Manuel Sam Webber, 48 of Lacombe, were both found guilty as charged in separate trials this week.

 

Lee was found guilty on Tuesday, August 5, 2008, of simple robbery.  Lee was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office in March 2008 after he took a male victim’s wallet from his back pocket and ran out the door of a local Covington restaurant.  The victim was able to catch Lee and hold him until deputies arrived.  A six person St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated about an hour before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presented the States case.  Whoever commits simple robbery shall be fined not more than three thousand dollars, imprisoned with or with hard labor for not more than seven years, or both.  Lee is facing up to 14 years in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Lee has a prior conviction for possession of cocaine in 2007

  

Webber was found guilty on Wednesday, August 6th, 2008, of theft.  Webber was arrested by Slidell Police in August 2006 after he and two accomplices shoplifted a local department store.  Webber was observed by police carrying stolen items to his car.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated less than thirty minutes before returning the guilty verdict to Judge Green.  Assistant District Attorney Hoffstadt presented the States case. The two accomplices, Shantrelle Boutrin, 29 of Slidell, and Webber’s sister, Debbie Webber, 38 of Slidell, pled guilty to theft in July 2007 and were both sentenced to 3 years probation.  Boutrin was the lookout and Debbie Webber drove the car.

 

Whoever commits the crime of theft shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than 10 years, or may be fined not more than three thousand dollars, or both.  Webber could face 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Webber has prior convictions for manslaughter in 1988, purse snatching in 1988 and unauthorized use of an access card in 1988.   

 

 

August 4, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE 

 

FORMER STATE PROBATION OFFICER PLEADS GUILTY

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shannon Stewart, 40 of Franklinton, pled guilty as charged Monday, August 4th, 2008, to three counts of sexual battery and four counts of malfeasance in office.  The jury trial was about to begin when the defendant decided to plead guilty.  22nd Judicial Judge Reggie Badeaux sentenced Stewart to 5 years in prison on each count and ordered the prison terms to be served concurrently.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.

 

Stewart was indicted by a St. Tammany Parish Grand Jury on August 16, 2006, after an investigation by Louisiana Probation and Parole.  Stewart was a former Probation Officer who sexually abused three female victims he was supervising.  The malfeasance charges involved his conduct as a public officer and violating rules dealing with improper handling of seized drugs and drug paraphernalia and stalking and threatening victims.

 

This case investigation began when another former Probation Officer, Scott Weiler, was charged and pled guilty to malfeasance in office and obstruction of justice charges earlier in 2006 and 2007.  Weiler had phone sex with a female victim he was supervising, helped her avoid bad drug screens, gave her jewelry, and did not arrest her for committing crimes.  Weiler served two years in prison and began serving five years of supervised probation upon his release.  

 

 

 

August 4, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

THREE MEN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED LAST WEEK

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Randy Desalvo, 39 of Slidell, Darryl Johnson, 22 of Ponchatoula, and Troy Batiste, 44 of Lacombe,  were all found guilty as charged in separate trials last week.

 

Desalvo was found guilty on Tuesday, July 29th, 2008, of a convicted felon possessing a firearm and possession with intent to distribute marijuana.  Desalvo was arrested by Slidell Police in February 2008 after a traffic stop.  Police saw a gun and smelled marijuana.  Several guns and a pound of marijuana were found.  A 12 member St.Tammany Parish Jury deliberated two hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Donald Fendlason.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presented the States case.  Judge Fendlason sentenced Desalvo to 10 years in prison for each charge and ordered that they be served concurrently. 

 

Johnson was found guilty on Wednesday, July 30th, 2008, of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.  Johnson was arrested by Mandeville Police in May 2007 after a traffic stop for not having the license plate properly displayed on his motorcycle.  The motorcycle was found to be stolen out of Tangipahoa Parish.  A 6 member jury returned the guilty verdict to Judge Fendlason.  Assistant District Attorney Hoffstadt presented the States case.  Whoever commits the crime of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than ten years or both. 

 

Batiste was found guilty on Friday, August 1st, 2008, of second degree battery and aggravated criminal damage to property.  Batiste was arrested in July 2001 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’ Office after he beat a man and damaged his vehicle due to road rage.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 2 hours Friday, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli presided over the 4 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew Jr.  If Batiste is found to be a career criminal he could face life in prison.  Batiste’s prior convictions include aggravated battery in 1987, second degree battery in 1991, and illegal use of weapons in 1982.

 

 

July 31, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Virgil Smith, 47 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of first degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Friday July 25, 2008, before returning the unanimous guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner.

 

Smith was arrested in 2001 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office for the murder of a female victim.  The victim was found lifeless on the floor of her mobile home by family members.  Smith fled to Arizona where he was arrested 3 weeks later.  Smith is presently serving life in prison as a career criminal for unrelated convictions.   

 

Judge Coady will sentence Smith August 20, 2008.  Whoever commits first degree murder shall be imprisoned for life without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

July 22, 2008
NEWS RELEASE


Legislative Delegation Receives Praise from District Attorney Reed

District Attorney Walter P. Reed of Washington and St. Tammany Parishes thanked the members of the Legislative Delegation for all of their support for the District Attorney’s Legislative Package during the recent session.

“Working together on law enforcement and prosecution issues that benefit the entire State as well as our local communities was successful this past session.” Reed stated. Representative John Schroder was a primary author on four (4) of the endorsed District Attorney Bills and all members of the Delegation moved these Bills through Committees and House and Senate Floors with great skill.

“I was able to personally meet with our entire Delegation through the efforts of Senator Jack Donahue on a regular basis. All of our Senators and Representatives were available, easy to contact and ready for Bill presentations during the progress of the Legislative session.” Reed continued.

“The energetic new members of our Delegation and the experience of our veteran members established new laws for two (2) Assistant District Attorney positions for our District as well as new statutes for the Children’s Advocacy Center and sex abuse cases along with the expansion of victim services.

A major feature of this recent session was the funding of toxicology laboratories in order to reduce Court delays statewide. I appreciate their hard work and interest in law enforcement and prosecution issues.” Reed concluded.

CONTACT: RICK WOOD 985-809-8366

 

 

July 11, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

FRANKLINTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF TWO AGGRAVATED RAPES

---FACES MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON---

 

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Boris Stogner, 28 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of two aggravated rapes.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for nearly two hours Thursday afternoon, July 10, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the four day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Stogner was arrested in February 2006 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after one of the two female victims reported the sexual abuse to her principal at school.  The office of community services and the Sheriffs office were notified.  The sexual abuse began in 2005 and continued until 2006.

 

Judge Knight will sentence Stogner on August 12, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

July 8, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MISSISSIPPI MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED

---SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Steven Cortez, 36 of Kiln, Mississippi, to vehicular homicide and hit and run driving.  22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green accepted the guilty plea on Monday, July 7, 2008, after hearing three victim impact statements from the victim’s family.  Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Cortez was arrested in August 2006, by Slidell Police after he ran over a pedestrian in west Slidell.  The female victim was walking home from work just after midnight near a highway 190 bridge when she was hit by the defendant’s vehicle and died as a result.  Cortez left the scene after the crash and proceeded home.  Cortez was arrested a few days later admitting to the crime and that he had been drinking that night.     

 

Judge Green sentenced Cortez to 15 years in prison with 5 years to be served without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.  Judge Green also sentenced Cortez to 10 years in prison for hit and run driving and ordered the two sentences to be served concurrently.  Judge Green also ordered Cortez to pay a fine of five thousand dollars and make restitution to the victim’s family. 

 

Whoever commits the crime of vehicular homicide shall be fined not less than two thousand dollars nor more than fifteen thousand dollars and be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than two years nor more than thirty years.  At least one year of the sentence of imprisonment shall be imposed without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

July 3, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 GUILTY VERDICTS IN EACH PARISH

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Roderick Griffin, 37 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of distribution of cocaine.  Griffin was convicted of this crime in October 2006 but appealed and was granted a new trial.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for an hour Wednesday, June 24, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine Dimiceli presided over the two day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Harold Bartholomew.

 

Griffin was arrested in May 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Deputies after he was caught on video tape selling cocaine.  An undercover deputy bought cocaine from Griffin while under surveillance.  28.6 grams of cocaine were found in Griffin’s vehicle.

 

Judge Dimiceli will sentence Griffin on July 22, 2008.  Griffin was found to be a career criminal in 2006 and has been in jail serving 30 years for the first conviction.  Whoever commits the crime of distribution of cocaine shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than two nor more than thirty years, with the first two years of said sentence being without benefit or parole, probation, or suspension of sentence, and may, in addition, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars

 

FRANKLINTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Demetri Brown, 41 of Franklinton, was found guilty Tuesday, June 24, 2008, of aggravated battery.  The Washington Parish Jury deliberated two hours before returning the guilty verdict to Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Shea Penton presented the State’s case. 

 

Brown was arrested on December 10, 2006 by Washington Parish Sheriffs Deputies after a shooting at a local bar.  Brown fired ten shots and hit the victim seven times.  The Deputies found Brown punched out on the floor when they arrived. 

 

Judge Burris will sentence Brown on August 22, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated battery shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than ten years, or both.

 

 

June 19, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

 BOGALUSA CAREER CRIMINAL FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED

--COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON--

 

FRANKLINTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ronald Kyles, 43 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged Tuesday, June 17, 2008, of simple burglary.  A six person Washington Parish Jury deliberated ninety minutes before returning the guilty verdict to Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Elaine Dimiceli.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State’s case. 

 

Kyles was arrested on February 9, 2006 by Bogalusa Police after a burglary at a local residence.  A neighbor called police when she saw Kyles taking a television from the residence to a car.  Kyles was arrested later that day at a friends home after the getaway car was spotted parked outside.

 

Judge Dimiceli will sentence Kyles on July 21, 2008.  Kyles will face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Kyles has prior convictions for theft in 1998, possession of stolen property twice in 1995, and burglary in 1995 and 1994.

 

Whoever commits the crime of simple burglary shall be fined not more than two thousand dollars, imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than twelve years, or both.

 

 

June 6, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

  

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports a very busy week for the 22nd Judicial District Court.

 

•           Robert Smith, 30 of Harvey, Cornell Moore, 26 of New Orleans, and Ronnie  Carter, 19 of New Orleans pled guilty as charged Monday, June 2, 2008, to armed robbery with a firearm.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia sentenced each of the three men to 25 years in prison at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Each defendant was sentenced to 20 years for the armed robberies and an extra 5 years for the use of a firearm.  The three men and Kerri Smith, 22 of New Orleans, robbed a Slidell bank in September 2006.  Kerri Smith was found guilty as charged by a St. Tammany Jury on April 23, 2008, and was sentenced May 12, 2008, to 35 years in prison by 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  

 

•           Dino Schwertz, 41 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to bank fraud in September 1993 and has been serving 5 years probation.  Schwertz’s probation was revoked on Tuesday, June 3, 2008, by Judge Peter Garcia due to Schwertz being arrested in March 2008 for aggravated rape.  Judge Garcia sentenced Schwertz to 10 years in prison.

 

•           Patrick Ducre, 39 of Slidell, was sentenced Tuesday, June 3, 2008, as a career criminal to life in prison at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence by 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Ducre has convictions for attempted possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession of marijuana 2nd offense in April 2008, possession of cocaine in July 2002, and distribution of cocaine in July 2002.

 

FRANKLINTON---

 

•           Eric Brister, 39 of Bogalusa, was sentenced Wednesday, June 4, 2008, as a career criminal to life in prison at hard labor without the possibility of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence by 22nd Judicial District Judge Donald Fendlason.  Brister was arrested by Bogalusa Police in July 2004 after an undercover policeman bought cocaine from him while under video surveillance.  As a result, Brister pled guilty to distribution of cocaine in April 2007 and also pled guilty to a June 2003 charge of distribution of cocaine.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the States case.  Brister also has convictions for conspiracy to distribute cocaine in 2004, three convictions for distribution of cocaine in 1997, and two convictions for possession of cocaine in 1997.

 

 

 

May 27, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

NEW ORLEANS FIREMAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED FLIGHT

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Irving Bubeck, 59 of St. Rose, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated flight from an officer.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the half-day trial, Monday, May 27, 2008, with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight. 

 

Bubeck was arrested in March 2007 by the Louisiana State Police after a chase on interstate 12 in western St. Tammany Parish.  Bubeck was riding his motorcycle on I-12 traveling east in Tangipahoa Parish when he came upon slow traffic due to an accident.  Bubeck and another motorcyclist were passing the line of traffic on the shoulder when State Troopers ordered them to stop.  The other cyclist stopped but Bubeck sped off and ran from Troopers at a speed in excess of 100 miles per hour while weaving in and out of traffic.  State Troopers pursued Bubeck and were finally able to stop him after several miles into St. Tammany Parish.

 

Judge Badeaux sentenced Bubeck to 10 days in jail, 1 year probation, drug screens, and a $250 fine.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated flight from an officer shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 2 years. 

 

 

May 27, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF DRUG CHARGES

---FACING 20 YEARS TO LIFE AS CAREER CRIMINAL--

 

FRANKLINTON --- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Leonard Blackburn, 43 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty of possession with intent to distribute cocaine and possession of hydrocodone.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour Thursday, May 22, 2008, before returning the guilty verdicts.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 2 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

 

Blackburn and Jasmine Brown, 26 of Bogalusa, were arrested in January 2008 after a traffic stop was made in south Bogalusa by the Bogalusa Police Street Crimes Unit and Washington Parish Drug Task Force.  Officers pulled Brown’s car over after she was identified as wanted on drug charges.  The officers found cocaine and hydrocodone in the vehicle.  Brown pled guilty to possession of cocaine and possession of hydrocodone Monday May 19, 2008 and Judge Knight sentenced her to 5 years probation and drug court.    

 

Judge Knight will sentence Blackburn, June 17, 2008.  Blackburn faces 20 years to life in prison if found to be a career criminal.  Blackburn has prior convictions for possession of cocaine and marijuana in 2004, possession of cocaine in 2001, and possession of cocaine in 1999.

 

Whoever is convicted of possession with intent to distribute cocaine shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 2 nor more than 30 years, with the first two years of said sentence being without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence; and may, in addition, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars.  Whoever is convicted of possession of hydrocodone shall be imprisoned for up to 5 years and may be required to pay a fine of not more than five thousand dollars.

 

 

 

May 22, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

PEARL RIVER MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ROBBERY

--COULD FACE UP TO 80 YEARS AS A CAREER CRIMINAL--

 

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Gary Perez, 40 of Pearl River, was found guilty of first degree robbery Tuesday, May 20, 2008.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated two hours, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris. The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

 

Perez was arrested in June 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the robbery of a convenience store with a stun gun.  Perez was originally charged with armed robbery but was found guilty of first degree robbery when the stun gun was deemed not to be a dangerous weapon.  Perez ran from the store with about $200 into an apartment complex and was later identified from photos captured by the store cameras.   

 

Judge Burris will sentence Perez on August 8, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted first degree robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 3 nor more than 40 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of imposition or execution of sentence.

 

The defendant could face from 27 to 80 years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.  Perez has prior convictions for unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 1997 in St. Bernard Parish, and for possession of cocaine and marijuana in 1999 in Orleans Parish. 

 

 

May 12, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

FOLSOM MAN FOUND GUILTY OF TWO AGGRAVATED RAPES

---FACES MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON---

 

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Clarence Sanders, 55 of Folsom, has been found guilty as charged of two aggravated rapes.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 50 minutes Friday afternoon, May 9, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Donald Fendlason presided over the four day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Gerald Alonzo and Scott Gardner.

 

Sanders was arrested in November 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after one of the victims reported the sexual abuse to her parents.  They called the father of the other victim who called the police.  The sexual abuse began in 2004 and continued until 2006.

 

Judge Fendlason will sentence Sanders on June 19, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

April 28, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

 

NEW ORLEANS MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

---ADDITIONAL FIREARM PENALTY INCLUDED---

 

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kerri Smith, 22 of New Orleans, was found guilty as charged of armed robbery and commission of an armed robbery with a firearm by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury.  The jury deliberated about 10 minutes before returning the guilty verdict Wednesday April 23, 2008 to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre presented the State’s case.   

Smith was arrested in September 2006 just after an armed robbery occurred at a local bank in Slidell.  Smith and 3 accomplices held up the bank at gunpoint and left with about $40,000 dollars.  An off duty police officer called the Slidell Police and followed the robbers as they fled the area.  The robbers ran a red light and crashed into another vehicle and were soon apprehended.

Judge Garcia will sentence Smith on May 12, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor from 10 to 99 years without the benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  When a firearm is used in the commission of the armed robbery, the offender shall be imprisoned at hard labor for an additional period of 5 years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  The additional penalty shall be served consecutively to the sentence imposed for the armed robbery. 

 

 

April 25, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MANDEVILLE MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEX CRIME

---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Kenneth Sargent, 35 formerly of Mandeville, to forcible rape.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight accepted the guilty plea on Wednesday April 23, 2008, and sentenced Sargent to 30 years in prison at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

Sargent was arrested for aggravated rape by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in July 2006 while serving 10 years in prison for a 2003 aggravated battery conviction.  The female victim reported to a friend in  early 2006 that she had been raped by the defendant in 2001.  The victim and her family agreed with the plea agreement and were present in the courtroom for sentencing.

 

Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence. 

 

 

April 22, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Darrin Raiford, 27 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for 3 hours Wednesday evening, April 16, 2008, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Gregg Briese.

 

Raiford was arrested in July 2006 by the Bogalusa Police Department for the murder of Dagrick Moses of Bogalusa.  The murder took place in the Sunset Acres Apartments area of west Bogalusa.  An apartment resident saw Raiford fire several shots into the victim’s vehicle. 

 

Judge DiMiceli will sentence Raiford May 15, 2008.  Whoever commits second degree murder shall be imprisoned for life without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 


 

April 1, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

MISSISSIPPI MAN PLEAD GUILTY TO SEX CRIMES

---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty plea of Daniel Homola, 35 of Laurel, MS, to forcible rape, attempted forcible rape, and two charges of molestation of juveniles.  A 12 person St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected when Homola decided to plead guilty as charged Monday, March 31, 2008.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Homola to 30 years in prison for forcible rape, 20 years in prison for attempted forcible rape, and 15 years in prison for each molestation of a juvenile charge.  Judge Garcia ordered the sentences to run concurrently.   Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the states case.

 

The two female victims, 22 and 23, were present in court and heard the defendant admit to the charges.  Each victim told the court that they agreed with the proceedings and were satisfied with the sentence.

 

Homola was arrested in May 2006 after the sexual abuse was reported in 2001.  The crimes were committed from 1997 to 2001 when the victims were able to get away from the defendant and go to a neighbor who called police.  Homola avoided arrest until 2006 when he was caught in Mississippi.

 

Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation parole, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more that 20 years.  Whoever commits the crime of molestation of a juvenile shall be imprisoned for not less than one nor more than 15 years. 

 

 

March 28, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO BATTERIES

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Willie Earl Johnson, Jr., 38 of Covington, has pled guilty as charged to second degree battery, aggravated battery, and crime against a person 65 years old or older.  22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green accepted the guilty plea and Assistant District Attorney Gerald Alonzo was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

 

Johnson was arrested in May 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he beat his girlfriend and her father.   Johnson went home and began arguing with the woman and hit her in the face.  Her elderly father came to her assistance and Johnson hit him in the head with a pistol.  Both victims were transported to the hospital and Johnson was arrested at a traffic stop a short time later.

 

Judge Green sentenced Johnson to 5 years in prison for second degree battery, 7 years in prison for aggravated battery, and 3 years in prison for crime against a person 65 years of age or older.  The sentences were ordered to run concurrently.  Johnson was found to be a habitual offender due to a prior conviction for obscenity in 2001 and therefore will serve all 7 years with no benefits. 

  

 

 

March 28, 2008 

NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER

----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Daniel Richardson, 21 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for 2 hours Wednesday evening, March 26, 2008, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Scott Gardner.

 

Richardson was arrested in October 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office for the murder of Quincy White, 28 of Covington.  The murder took place in the Nursery Subdivision where Richardson and White lived.  This subdivision is located near Abita Springs off Highway 36 but has a Covington address.  The two argued on several occasions during the day and Richardson went home to get a gun.  Richardson returned and was confronted by several people who tried to prevent him from attacking White.  Richardson shot White several times and White died at the hospital. 

 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Richardson April 19, 2008.  Whoever commits second degree murder shall be imprisoned for life without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

 

 

March 7, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED BATTERY
--FACES UP TO 20 YEARS IN PRISON--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Larry Taylor, 28 of Covington, was found guilty on Thursday, March 6, 2008, of aggravated battery.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty verdict from the 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury.  Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight presented the State’s case. 

Taylor was arrested in June 2005 by the St.Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he hit another man with an aluminum bat.  The victim was helping Taylor’s estranged wife remove her belongings from the family mobile home in a Covington trailer park.  Taylor went after the victim with the bat striking him several times and causing broken bones in his arm that required three surgeries.

Judge Badeaux will sentence Taylor on March 19, 2008.  Whoever commits an aggravated battery shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than ten years, or both.  Taylor was also convicted of aggravated battery in 2001 and could face an enhanced sentence of five to twenty years in prison if found to be a habitual offender.   

 

March 7, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

COVINGTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF COCAINE POSSESSION
--FACES 10 YEARS AS CAREER CRIMINAL—

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Cecil Pouncey, 43 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of possession of cocaine.  A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour Tuesday, March 4, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Joseph Oubre and Brian Trainor.

Pouncey was arrested in October 2007 by the Covington Police Department after a traffic stop.  Police observed Pouncey conducting a drug transaction from his vehicle in Covington.  Police followed Pouncey and made the traffic stop after Pouncey committed two driving violations.  Cocaine was found in Pouncey’s cigarette case.

Judge Garcia will sentence Pouncey on March 18, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of possession of cocaine shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than five years, and a fine of not more than five thousand dollars, or both.  Pouncey was also convicted of cocaine possession in 2002.  If  Pouncey is found to be a habitual offender he could face an enhanced sentence of two and one half years to ten years in prison.

 

February 26, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY
---SENTENCED TO 12 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Mohammed Diokhane, 18 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged on Monday, February 11, 2008, to armed robbery.  22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Diokhane to12 years in prison at hard labor.  Assistant District Attorney Gerald Alonzo was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case. 

Diokhane was arrested in August 2005 by the Slidell Police Department after he and two accomplices robbed a local Slidell restaurant employee at gunpoint.  Diokhane and the gunman confronted the employee in the parking lot after receiving a call from the third man who was inside the restaurant.  The caller advised Diokhane and the gunman that the employee had a bag of cash disguised as a bag of food and was taking it to her car.  The gunman took the bag from the employee and he and Diokhane fled the scene.  The two robbers quickly discovered that the bag only contained food and left a trail of food packaging along their escape route.  Slidell Police and St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Deputies caught Diokhane and the gunman shortly after in a nearby subdivision.  The caller was arrested a few months later. The caller and gunman are awaiting trial.

Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than ninety-nine years.   

 

February 26, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTED RAPE
---SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John Q. Burris, 35 of Slidell, pled guilty on Monday, February 11, 2008, to attempted aggravated rape.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Burris to 30 years in prison at hard labor.  Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  The victim and her family were present in court and agreed with the plea agreement.

Burris was arrested in December 2006 by the St.Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office for the sexual abuse that occurred in August 2006.  The victim told family members about the sexual abuse and it was subsequently reported to the Sheriff’s Office.

Whoever commits the crime of attempted aggravated rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than fifty years.   

 

February 25, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL CONTRACTOR PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED
---DEFENDANT SENTENCED TO TEN (10) YEARS IN PRISON---

 

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Lamont Miles, 42, recently of Slidell but formerly of Orlando, Florida, has pled guilty as charged to 16 counts of theft over $500 and 1 count of issuing a worthless check.  22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady accepted the guilty plea Monday, February 11, 2008.  Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparation and presentation of the State’s case.  Judge Coady sentenced Miles to 10 years in prison on each charge.  The court ordered the sentences to be served simultaneously.

Miles was arrested in May 2006 by Slidell Police and originally charged with three counts of theft.  Miles was in Slidell following Hurricane Katrina to do home repair.  Miles entered into contracts with homeowners and took deposits but never did any work.  Thirteen other charges involving thirteen additional victims were added to the case once the defendant’s name was publicized.

Whoever commits the crime of theft over $500 shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than ten years, or may be fined not more than three thousand dollars, or both.  Whoever commits the crime of issuing worthless checks over $500 shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than ten years, or may be fined not more than three thousand dollars, or both.

 

February 19, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

FORMER MANDEVILLE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FORCIBLE RAPE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ehab Ahab Mohamed, 35 of Charleston, South Carolina, formerly of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of forcible rape.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about eight hours Wednesday, February 13, 2008, before returning the guilty as charged verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the three day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

Mohamed fled the country as the victim reported the rape to the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in January 2007.  The FBI arrested Mohamed in August of 2007 in South Carolina after he reentered the country.  Mohamed was the manager of a local restaurant where the victim was an employee.  Mohamed volunteered to drive the victim to look at used cars and to take her home.  After looking at the cars Mohamed took the victim to his apartment near Mandeville where the rape occurred.
 
Judge Knight will sentence Mohamed on March 17, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years.  At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence. 

 

February 15, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

BOGALUSA CAREER THIEF GETS 12 YEARS

 

FRANKLINTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jimmy Lee Brown, 51 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged to burglary of an inhabited dwelling, two counts of theft, and four counts of simple burglary Monday, February 11, 2008.  Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Patricia Hedges accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Brown to twelve years in prison.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case. 

Brown was arrested by Bogalusa Police in September 2007 after he was caught burglarizing an inhabited home.  In 2006 and 2004 Brown was arrested for shoplifting at two different Bogalusa businesses.  In 2005 Brown was arrested for simple burglary of a Bogalusa home.  Police found that Brown had also burglarized three other homes in the Bogalusa area.      

Judge Hedges sentenced Brown to twelve years in prison for burglary of an inhabited dwelling, two years on the theft counts, and twelve years for each charge of simple burglary.  The Court ordered that the sentences to run concurrently. 

Whoever commits the crime of burglary of an inhabited dwelling shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than one year nor more than twelve years.   Whoever commits the crime of theft shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than two years, may be fined not more than two thousand dollars, or both.  Whoever commits the crime of simple burglary shall be fined not more than two thousand dollars, imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than twelve years, or both. 

 

January 31, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

COVINGTON BROTHERS PLEAD GUILTY TO POSSESSION OF MORE THAT 400 GRAMS OF COCAINE

---DEFENDANTS DECIDE DURING TRIAL---

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert McQueen, 29 of Covington, pled guilty to possession of over 400 grams of cocaine and trafficking in proceeds from drug offenses.  Damien McQueen, 27of Covington, pled guilty to possession of over 400 grams of cocaine and illegal carrying of weapons by a convicted felon.  The trial was in its third day and the court had heard testimony from several witnesses for the state before the McQueens chose to plead guilty Wednesday, January 30, 2008.  22nd Judicial District Judge Donald Fendlason sentenced Robert McQueen to 20 years in prison at hard labor and Damien McQueen to 18 years in prison at hard labor.  Both defendants were convicted as habitual offenders and are not eligible for parole for the first 15 years of their sentences.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

The McQueen brothers were arrested by St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Deputies in March 2006 after Deputies caught Damien McQueen in the act of receiving a shipment of 3 kilos (3000 grams or 6.6 pounds) of cocaine for his brother Robert.  Damien McQueen threw his gun down as he ran from the crime scene but was caught after a short chase. 

Whoever commits the crime of possession of over 400 grams of cocaine shall be sentenced to serve a term of imprisonment at hard labor of not less than fifteen years, nor more than thirty years and to pay a fine of not less than two hundred fifty thousand dollars, nor more than six hundred thousand dollars.  The fines were suspended due to the lengthy jail sentences imposed.

 

January 14, 2008
NEWS RELEASE

 

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

 

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kyle Harry, 33 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about two hours Friday, January 11, 2008, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight.

Harry was arrested in January 2006 by the Bogalusa Police for the murder of a Bogalusa man.  Harry believed the victim had stolen some illegal drugs from him.  Harry and another man went to the victim’s residence in the Oneal Apartments on Magee Street in north Bogalusa.  Harry murdered the victim by shooting him several times with a pistol.  Harry and his accomplice got away before Police arrived. 

Judge Badeaux will sentence Harry Thursday, February 7, 2008.  Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

December 13, 2007
NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS IN PRISON
--COULD FACE MORE AS CAREER CRIMINAL—

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Douglas Smith, 33 of Slidell, was sentenced to thirty years in prison for attempted first degree robbery and three counts of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated ninety minutes on November 6, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia. The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Smith was arrested in November 2006 by Slidell Police after a four day crime spree.  Smith robbed three people at gunpoint and attempted to rob someone else by threatening to have a gun before a victim was able to identify him from a picture in a yearbook.  Police spotted Smith in a vehicle and gave chase arresting him after it crashed.

Judge Garcia sentenced Smith to 30 years in prison on December 12, 2007.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 10 years and for not more than 99 years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted first degree robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 20 years.

The defendant could face from fifty to one hundred and sixty-eight years in prison if found to be a habitual offender at an upcoming hearing.

 

December 13, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

 

SLIDELL MAN SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Anson Holley, Jr., 38 of Slidell, was sentenced Wednesday, December 12, 2007, to 15 years in prison for molestation of a juvenile.  A St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour and a half Wednesday afternoon, October 24, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 2 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Holley was arrested in January 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the victim reported the sexual abuse to her father.  The juvenile victim recalled and reported the abuse from 1999 after seeing the defendant for the first time in years. 

Judge Garcia sentenced Holley to fifteen years in prison and suspended three years.  Holley is to serve 5 years of probation upon release and register as a sex offender.  Whoever commits the crime of molestation of a juvenile shall be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not less than one nor more than fifteen years, or both.

 

December 5, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN SENTENCED TO 35 YEARS IN PRISON
--MAY FACE LIFE IN PRISON--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Carl England, 46 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged of attempted second degree murder and aggravated burglary.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for two hours Wednesday, November 28, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the two day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

England was arrested in Gulfport, Mississippi, in February 2005 a week after he attacked a female victim near Slidell.  England broke into the victim’s mobile home stabbing her several times.  England also hit the victim with a hammer before fleeing to Mississippi.  The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office located England and the Gulfport Police returned him here to face the charges.

Judge Knight sentenced England on Tuesday December 4th, 2007, to thirty-five years in prison for attempted murder and fifteen years in prison for aggravated burglary.  Judge Knight ordered the sentences to run concurrently.  England could face life in prison if found to be a habitual offender at an upcoming hearing.

Whoever commits the crime of attempted second degree murder shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten nor more than fifty years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of aggravated burglary shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than one nor more than thirty years. 

 

November 27, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

FRANKLINTON MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

 

FRANKLINTON --- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Buddy Marvin Hicks, 63 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of 3 counts of aggravated rape by a 12 person Washington Parish Jury.  The trial lasted 4 days from Tuesday November 13 through Friday November 16, 2007.  The Jury deliberated nearly five hours before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris.  Assistant District Attorney Shea Penton was in charge of preparing and presenting the State’s case.

Hicks was arrested in July 2006 by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office after the sexual abuse that occurred in September 2005.  The victim was observed by a family member acting out a sex act.  The victim explained that the defendant had taught her to do that and the police were notified.

Judge Burris will sentence Hicks on December 12, 2007.  If the district attorney does not seek a capital verdict, the offender shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

November 15, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

HAMMOND MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Latroy White, 41 of Hammond, has been found guilty as charged of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 20 minutes before returning the unanimous guilty verdict Wednesday November 14, 2007.  22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green presided over the trial with the State’s case presented by Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo.

White was arrested in May 2007 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he committed an armed robbery near Covington.  White was seen shoplifting some items at a local store and was confronted outside by the victim.  White wielded a knife and was able to get away.  The victim identified White from a photo lineup.

Judge Green will sentence White December 4th, 2007.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten years and for not more than ninety-nine years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

November 15, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

COVINGTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Douglass Smith, 33 of Slidell, has been found guilty of attempted 1st degree robbery and 3 counts of armed robbery.  A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated 90 minutes before returning the guilty verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia. The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Smith was arrested in November 2006 by Slidell Police after a four day crime spree.  Smith robbed three people at gunpoint and attempted to rob someone else by threatening to have a gun before a victim was able to identify him from a picture in a yearbook.  Police spotted Smith in a vehicle and gave chase arresting him after it crashed.

Judge Garcia will sentence Smith on December 12, 2007.  Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than 10 years and for not more than 99 years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.  Whoever commits the crime of attempted 1st degree robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than 20 years.

 

November 15, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SUN MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tommy Rowell, Sr., 39 of Sun, was sentenced to life in prison at hard labor Wednesday November 14, 2007, by 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress.  Rowell was found guilty as charged of second degree murder by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury October 25th, 2007. The trial lasted 3 days with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Scott Gardner.

Rowell was arrested in December 2004 by Covington Police for the murder of Thomas Talley, 30 of Covington.  Rowell and Talley’s wife were out partying all night in New Orleans.  Early the next morning they arrived at the Talley home in Covington Point subdivision and blew the vehicle horn until the victim came out of the house.  Rowell shot Talley several times and exited the vehicle to shoot him twice in the head at close range.

 

October 29, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SUN MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF MURDER
----MANDATORY LIFE IN PRISON----

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tommy Rowell, Sr., 39 of Sun, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than an hour Thursday evening, October 25th, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond
Childress presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Jack Hoffstadt and Scott Gardner.

Rowell was arrested in December 2004 by Covington Police for the murder of Thomas Talley, 30 of Covington.  Rowell and Talley’s wife were out partying all night in New Orleans.  Early the next morning they arrived at the Talley home in Covington Point subdivision and blew the vehicle horn until the victim came out of the house.  Rowell shot Talley several times and exited the vehicle to shoot him twice in the head at close range.

Judge Childress will sentence Rowell to mandatory life in prison at hard labor November 14, 2007.

 

October 24, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MOLESTATION OF A JUVENILE 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Anson Holley, Jr., 38 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of molestation of a juvenile.  A St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour and a half Wednesday afternoon, October 24, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 2 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Holley was arrested in January 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after the victim reported the sexual abuse to her father.  The juvenile victim recalled and reported the abuse from 1999 after seeing the defendant for the first time in years. 

Judge Garcia remanded the defendant to the parish jail and will sentence him on December 12, 2007.  Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with juveniles shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than seven years, or both.

 

October 24, 2007 

NEWS RELEASE

MANDEVILLE MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO NEGLIGENT HOMICIDE
---DEFENDANT DECIDES DURING TRIAL---
 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Bradford Moore, 21 of Mandeville, to negligent homicide.  The court had heard the testimony of the victim’s wife and several other witnesses for the state before Moore chose to plead guilty as charged.  The victim’s wife agreed with the plea and gave a victim impact statement prior to 22nd Judicial District Court Judge William Knight’s sentencing.  Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case.

Moore was arrested by the Louisiana State Police in February 2005 after he caused a collision with another vehicle.  Moore’s vehicle crossed the center line and hit another car head on killing the driver.  The crash happened on Highway 59 south of 1088 near Mandeville.

Judge Knight sentenced Moore to 2 years in prison at hard labor suspended and 3 years of active supervised probation.  Judge Knight also ordered Moore to pay the victim’s funeral and monument costs, submit to random drug and alcohol screening every two months, and perform 40 hours of community service in a program that provides therapy to physically challenged children.

Whoever commits the crime of negligent homicide shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than five years, fine not more than five thousand dollars, or both.

 

October 24, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ECSTACY POSSESSION
--HABITUAL OFFENDER FACES LIFE IN PRISON--

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tyree Young, Jr., 28 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of possession of the Schedule I drug ECSTASY. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for less than half an hour Tuesday, October 16th, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict.  22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli presided over the 1 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

Young appealed the 2005 conviction for this charge to the 1st Circuit Court of Appeal who granted him a new trial.  The Appeal Court decided that Young should have had a twelve member instead of a six member jury and that the court could impose a life sentence.

Young was arrested on July 23, 2003, in Slidell by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after being found with illegal drugs.  A Louisiana Probation Officer observed illegal drugs while arresting another man at a Slidell area residence.  The sheriff’s office conducted a comprehensive search of the house and occupants and found Young with ECSTASY hidden in his shoe as well as cocaine in his possession.  Young was found guilty as charged for the possession of cocaine in 2005. 

Judge Dimiceli will sentence Young on November 16th, 2007.  Young has prior convictions for possession of cocaine, possession of stolen things, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling, and distribution of cocaine in 1997, and again for distribution of cocaine in 1999.  Young is an habitual offender and faces up to life in prison due to these convictions.  

 

October 10, 2007 

NEWS RELEASE

KENNER MAN FOUND GUILTY OF FIRST DEGREE ROBBERY
--HABITUAL OFFENDER COULD RECEIVE LIFE IN PRISON---

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kenneth Jackson, 41 of Kenner, was found guilty of first degree robbery by a 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury.  The jury deliberated an hour and a half before returning the guilty verdict Tuesday evening October 9, 2007, to 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady.  Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State’s case. 
Jackson was arrested in Mississippi on November 2, 2006, for a robbery that occurred at a local mall parking lot.  Jackson met the victim at the parking lot on October 2, 2006, to purchase a puppy but took all the animals in possession of the victim and fled.  Jackson was originally charged with armed robbery because the victim originally reported she saw a gun.

Judge Coady will sentence Jackson on November 5, 2007.  Jackson has prior convictions for possession of cocaine in 1998, burglary in 1992, possession of stolen property and theft in 1990, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling in 1988, and armed robbery in 1983.  Jackson is an habitual offender and faces up to life in prison due to these convictions.

 

October 9, 2007 

NEWS RELEASE

MANDEVILLE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 4TH DWI

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Harris Mentel, 28 of Mandeville, was found guilty as charged of a DWI, fourth offense or greater, and simple escape from the custody of the Mandeville Police Department.  A 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the unanimous guilty verdict Thursday, September 27th, 2007, to 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia.  Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre presented the State’s case. 

Mentel was arrested by Mandeville Police April 19, 2007, after he caused a head-on crash on highway 59 near the Tammany Trace.  Mentel admitted to drinking six or seven beers and failed the field sobriety test.  A search of Mentel’s vehicle revealed open and unopened cans of beer. 

Mentel will be sentenced October 17, 2007, by Judge Garcia.  Whoever is convicted of a DWI fourth offense or greater shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than ten years nor more than thirty years and pay a fine of five thousand dollars. 

 

October 3, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

 RECENT GUILTY PLEAS RESULT IN LONG JAIL TERMS

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Dobbs, 28 of Slidell, was sentenced to 33 years in jail for forcible rape and Dennis Sawyer, 34 of Slidell, was sentenced to 20 years in jail for aggravated burglary in unrelated cases.

Dobbs pled guilty to forcible rape, an amended charge, after review of the evidence and consultation with the victims.  22nd Judicial District Court Judge Elaine DiMiceli accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Dobbs on Monday, September 10, 2007.  Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing was in charge of the state’s case.

Dobbs was arrested in June 2005 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after being called by the mother of the female child victim.  Dobbs was babysitting the victim when the sexual abuse occurred.  The victim reported the abuse to her mother and law enforcement conducted the investigation which concluded with the arrest of Dobbs.

In the other case, Sawyer pled guilty on Monday, April 23, 2007, to the amended charge of aggravated burglary. Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea in April and on Wednesday, September 5, 2007, sentenced Sawyer to 20 years in prison at hard labor.  The male victim gave a verbal impact statement and the female victim’s impact statement was read by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre who presented the state’s case.

Sawyer was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office on August 1, 2005, after he unlawfully entered the residence of his estranged wife.  Sawyer was armed with a gun as both occupants were awakened by the noise and found the defendant pointing his pistol at both of them.  The man jumped at the defendant and wrestled the gun away as two shots were fired.  The man and woman fled the residence and called for help.  Sawyer was picked up a short time later.

“The amount of time and effort in preparing these cases for trial by my Assistant District Attorneys played a major role in the successful prosecution of these two offenders” DA Reed stated. “Without the long hours put in to collect evidence, interview witnesses, research the law, and in general to prepare for these complex cases, these long prison sentences could not have been imposed by the court”  Reed concluded. 

 

NEWS RELEASE
DISTRICT ATTORNEY WALTER REED
ANNOUNCES JURY TRIAL STATISTICS

Over the past nine (9) years the 22nd Judicial District covering Washington and St. Tammany Parishes has had over 100 jury trials per year throughout the District. District Attorney Walter Reed commended the felony division and all of its assistant district attorneys for this fine work. "We have maintained our goal of bringing to trial serious felony cases and the number of cases presented to a jury reflects a strong prosecutor's office and a devoted judiciary willing to protect our citizens," the DA commented.

The following statistics are reproduced from the Louisiana Supreme Court's Annual report.

Rank

Year

Parish

# of Trials

 

Rank 1

2006

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

103

Rank 2

2006

Orleans

92

Rank 3

2006

Caddo

73

 

Rank 1

2005

Orleans Parish

192

Rank 2

2005

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

109

Rank 3

2005

Jefferson

77

 

Rank 1

2004

Orleans Parish

221

Rank 2

2004

Jefferson Parish

178

Rank 3

2004

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

103

 

Rank 1

2003

Orleans Parish

172

Rank 2

2003

Jefferson Parish

170

Rank 3

2003

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

107

 

 

 

 

Rank 1

2002

Orleans

374

Rank 2

2002

Jefferson

200

Rank 3

2002

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

114

 

 

 

 

Rank 1

2001

Orleans

364

Rank 2

2001

Jefferson

204

Rank 3

2001

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

107

 

 

 

 

Rank 1

2000

Orleans

366

Rank 2

2000

Jefferson

200

Rank 3

2000

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

107

 

 

 

 

Rank 1

1999

Orleans

486

Rank 2

1999

Jefferson

206

Rank 3

1999

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

112

 

 

 

 

Rank 1

1998

Orleans

595

Rank 2

1998

Jefferson

220

Rank 3

1998

St. Tammany & Washington Parishes

103


The following is a link shows the trends in court activity in the State of Louisiana. Click here to view (.pdf format)

 

September 4, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

MISSISSIPPI MAN FOUND GUILTY OF ARMED ROBBERY

AND MANSLAUGHTER

FRANKLINTON-- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Antwine Magee, 29 of Tylertown, Mississippi, has been found guilty of armed robbery and manslaughter. A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about four hours Friday, August 17, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Patricia Hedges presided over the week-long trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

Magee was arrested in January 2005 by the Washington Parish Sheriffs Office for his participation in the robbery and murder of a Washington Parish man. Magee and three others were at the victim’s residence to rob him and one of the other men shot the victim. Magee admitted to law enforcement his involvement in the crime.

Judge Hedges will sentence Magee October 8, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten years and for not more than ninety-nine years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Whoever commits the crime of manslaughter shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more than forty years.

 

 

September 4, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

EX-MANDEVILLE COACH FOUND GUILTY OF INDECENT BEHAVIOR WITH A JUVENILE

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Nelson “Skip” Curtis, 58 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of indecent behavior with a juvenile. A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 2 hours Friday, August 24, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 2 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Curtis, a former Mandeville High School coach, was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office on February 10, 2007, after a complaint was lodged against him by a female juvenile employee. The victim worked for Curtis at the Boule’ Prime House Restaurant and told Deputies that Curtis had touched her in a sexually inappropriate way while at work.

Judge Garcia will sentence Curtis on September 25, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with juveniles shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than seven years, or both.

 

August 17, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

MICHIGAN MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Tony Massie, 44 of Plymouth, Michigan, was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday, August 15 th, 2007, by 22 nd Judicial District Court Judge Larry Green. Massie had been found guilty as charged of attempted simple robbery May 22, 2007. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the state’s case.

Massie was arrested in May 2006 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after he attempted to rob a female victim that was giving him a ride home near Madisonville. Massie grabbed for the car keys and the victim fought him off and blew the horn until a passing motorist stopped. Massie fled the scene and was arrested the next day.

Massie was sentenced as a 4 th offense career criminal under the Habitual Offender Law. Massie has prior convictions in Michigan for unlawful driving away of an automobile, fleeing a police officer, criminal sexual conduct, and breaking and entering.

 

August 17, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

CAREER CRIMINAL GETS 25 YEAR PRISON SENTENCE

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Michael Small, 32 of Jacksonville, Florida to possession of over 400 grams of cocaine. The 7 th juror had just been selected when Small chose to plead guilty as charged. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner was in charge of preparation and presentation of the state’s case before 22 nd Judicial District Court Judge Martin Coady.

Small was arrested in August 2005 by the Louisiana State Police after a traffic stop. Small and the other occupant gave conflicting stories about their trip from Arizona to Florida and a search of the vehicle produced the 9 pounds of cocaine from under the back seat.

District Attorney Reed commented that “a lifetime player in the cocaine game is now removed from this community. We must never slow down our efforts to stop illegal drugs,” Reed concluded.

Judge Coady sentenced Small to 25 years in prison as a 3 rd offense career criminal at hard labor with no parole or good time under the Habitual Offender Law. Small has prior convictions in Florida for cocaine trafficking and possession of cocaine.

August 8, 2007

 NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY AT FOLSOM PHARMACY

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Timothy John Williams, Jr., 20 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged to 3 counts of armed robbery on Wednesday, August 1, 2007. Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Williams, who had no prior felony convictions, to 10 years in prison without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Assistant District Attorney Julie Knight was in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case.

Williams Jr. was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office in January 2007 after 3 people were robbed at gunpoint by two masked gunmen at a Folsom pharmacy. A large amount of drugs as well as the purse and car keys of a customer were stolen. One robber fled in a truck and the other robber followed in the customer’s stolen car. The car crashed a few miles down the road and the driver was picked up by the truck and the two robbers got away. The arrests were made a couple of weeks later after an intensive investigation.

The mastermind of these 3 armed robberies, Timothy Williams, Sr., is scheduled to go to trial before Judge Badeaux on Monday, November 26, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of armed robbery shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than ten years and for not more than ninety-nine years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

 

 

August 8, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESULTS IN SECOND DEGREE BATTERY

PEARL RIVER MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Jerry Allen, 51 of Pearl River, has been found guilty as charged of second degree battery that resulted from domestic violence. A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 2 hours Wednesday, August 1, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 1 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt.

Allen was arrested by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office in March 2007 after he was involved in a domestic incident. Allen became angry during an argument and choked the victim until she became unconscious. The victim awoke and was able to escape to a family member’s home.

Judge Childress will sentence Allen October 4, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of second degree battery shall be fined not more than two thousand dollars or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than five years or both.

July 18, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY AFTER SECOND WITNESS

 

District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty plea of James McKinley Miller, 39 of Slidell. Miller pled guilty as charged yesterday, July 17, 2007, during his trial for distribution of heroin and two counts of distribution of cocaine. The second witness for the state had finished testifying when the defendant decided to plead guilty. Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presented the state’s case before 22 nd Judicial District Court Judge Patricia Hedges.

Miller was arrested in December 2006 by narcotics officers after they bought illegal drugs from him near Slidell. The undercover agents called Miller and were able to buy cocaine from him. The agents called Miller a second time a few days later and bought heroin and cocaine.

Judge Hedges sentenced Miller to 12 1/2 years in prison as a result of the guilty plea. Any person who is convicted of distribution of heroin shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not less that five nor more than fifty years at hard labor at least five years of which shall be served without benefit of probation, or suspension of sentence, and may, in addition, be required to pay a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars. Any person convicted of distribution of cocaine shall be sentenced to a term of imprisonment at hard labor for not less than two years nor more than thirty years, with the first two years of said sentence being without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence and may, in addition, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars.

 

July 6, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

PURSE SNATCHER TARGETS ELDERLY

GETS 12 YEARS

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Curtis Fletcher, 43 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to purse snatching Thursday, July 5, 2007. Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Fletcher to 12 years in prison. The victim was in court ready and prepared to testify. Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case.

Fletcher was arrested by Slidell Police in March 2007 after he snatched the purse from an elderly victim. The 80 year old female victim was on a shopping trip and was heading back to her vehicle in the parking lot when Fletcher came from behind and took her purse. The victim was knocked to the ground but quickly got up to yell for help. Several “Good Samaritans” helped police to identify and capture the defendant as he was trying to flee.

“We pay particular attention to crime against our senior citizens,” D.A. Reed commented. “Our special unit for prosecution of offenders who prey on the elderly will continue to be aggressive with these type of cases,” Reed concluded.

Whoever commits the crime of purse snatching shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not less than two years and for not more than twenty years.

July 6, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

PEARL RIVER MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO RAPE

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Anthony Odom, 43 of Pearl River, pled guilty to forcible rape Thursday July 5, 2007. Twenty-Second Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Odom to 20 years in prison at hard labor. The state presented to the court a victim impact statement through testimony from the victim who had to return to Louisiana from Alabama prior to the sentencing. Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt was in charge of preparing and presenting the State’s case.

Odom was arrested in May 2003 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office after he confessed to rape charges stemming from a rape that occurred just outside Pearl River in December 2000. The rape came to light after the victim had surgery and doctors reported to the victim’s family that there were signs of possible sexual abuse.

Whoever commits the crime of forcible rape shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than five nor more than forty years. At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

June 29, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

MANDEVILLE MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON

 

COVINGTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Wayne Lee, 34 of Mandeville, has been sentenced to life in prison by 22 nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia. Lee was found guilty as charged of second degree murder Friday, February 9, 2007, by a twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury. The State’s case in the 5 day trial was presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Joseph Oubre.

Lee was arrested September 16, 2003 for the September 12, 2003, murder of his girlfriend, Audra Bland, 38 of Hammond. Lee and Bland were partying into the morning on the Mississippi gulf coast when they had a disagreement over Bland’s behavior. The two came to Lee’s parent’s residence in Mandeville around sunrise. Lee admitted putting an unconscious Bland to bed at 6 AM but was unsure what had happened to her. Lee had guests over all day but didn’t mention anything about Bland. Bland remained in bed all day until 911 was called too late at 9 PM. The autopsy revealed that Bland died from a blow to the back of the head.

Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

June 29, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER

 FRANKLINTON --- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Waylon Turnage, 30 of Franklinton, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder. A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about 45 minutes Thursday, June 28, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 4 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Lewis Murray.

Turnage was arrested in April 2006 after he turned himself in to the Washington Parish Sheriffs Office. Turnage went to the victim’s home and armed himself with the victim’s pistol. Turnage shot the victim twice and took the gun, shell casings, and some of the victim’s personal items and left. Turnage confessed to the crime and led police to the murder weapon and other items he had taken from the victim’s home.

Judge Childress will sentence Turnage July 18, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

June 13, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

BOGALUSA MAN GETS LONG PRISON TERM

FRANKLINTON-----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that August Varnado, 59 of Bogalusa, was sentenced Monday, June 11, 2007, to 20 years in prison. 22 nd Judicial District Court Judge Raymond Childress gave Varnado the prison time after he was found guilty as charged in March 2007 on three counts of attempted aggravated kidnapping. Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the states case.

Varnado was arrested by Bogalusa Police and Louisiana Probation and Parole Officers in July 2005 after he tried to lure 3 minor victims into his car. The mother of two of the victims reported the incidents to police. Over the next 24 hours Bogalusa Police were able to identify the suspect from victim descriptions and vehicle information collected from witnesses. Two Probation Officers were notified that the suspect was on probation and they immediately came to Bogalusa to aid in the arrest. Varnado is a registered sex offender.

Varnado has a prior conviction for obscenity in 2004 and the current convictions on 3 counts of attempted aggravated kidnapping qualified him for the D. A. career criminal program as a multiple offender. Judge Childress gave Varnado 10 years for count 1, 10 years for count 2, and 20 years for count three due to the habitual offender law. Judge Childress ordered all three sentences to run simultaneously.

 

June 6, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

CAREER CRIMINAL DIVISION ACTIVE WITH PROSECUTIONS

LONG PRISON TERMS IMPOSED

 

COVINGTON-----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that CHRISTOPHER BUCKENBERGER, 53 of Shreveport, DAVID SOSA, 36 of Houston, and RICHARD LAY, 48 of Covington, were recently sentenced in unrelated cases in 22 nd Judicial District Court. Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the states cases.

Judge Elaine DiMiceli sentenced defendant Buckenberger to life in prison without benefit of parole for attempted 2 nd degree murder, attempted forcible rape, and second degree kidnapping. Buckenberger was arrested in February 2006 by a Madisonville Policeman who observed Buckenberger attacking the kidnapped female victim at the Madisonville boat launch. A witness stepped forward to testify that Buckenberger had earlier tried to run over her with his vehicle. Buckenberger was found guilty March 15, 2007, and sentenced May 29, 2007. Buckenberger has prior convictions for second degree battery, escape, forcible rape, and sexual battery.

Judge Martin Coady sentenced defendant Sosa to 35 years in prison with 5 years without benefit of parole for possession of cocaine. Sosa was arrested in January 2005 by the Louisiana State Police after a traffic stop. A search of Sosa’s vehicle produced 400 grams of cocaine hidden under the hood of the car. Sosa was found guilty August 24, 2006, and sentenced May 30, 2007. Sosa has prior convictions for aggravated robbery, possession of marijuana, resisting arrest, and possession of stolen property, and evading arrest.

Judge Coady also sentenced defendant Lay to 20 years in prison for attempted possession of cocaine. Lay was arrested in April 2004 by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriffs Office after attempting to purchase cocaine from an undercover narcotics officer. Lay was found guilty March 29, 2007, and sentenced May 31, 2007. Lay has prior convictions for possession of cocaine in a school zone, theft, possession of stolen property, and forgery.

“These defendants have shown that they cannot live by the rules of society,” D.A. Reed commented. “The long prison terms are justified and appropriate for the crimes committed and the previous criminal behavior of these individuals,” Reed concluded.

June 6, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

DRIVE-BY SHOOTER FOUND GUILTY

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that WILLIAM PANTER, 26 of Slidell, has been found guilty as charged of 2 counts of drive-by-shooting. A six member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated less than two hours Tuesday, June 5, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the 2 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre.

Panter was arrested in December 2006 by Slidell Police after he fired several shots into a car occupied by a male driver and his ex-girlfriend. Panter pulled up to the car and demanded it pull over. The driver refused and Panter shot the car several times and fled.

Judge Coady will sentence Panter July 16, 2007. Whoever commits an assault by drive-by-shooting shall be imprisoned for not less than 1 year nor more than five years, with or without hard labor, and without benefit of suspension of sentence.

May 14, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

JURY TRIALS STARTED IN 22 ND JUDICIAL DISTRICT---DEFENDANTS PLEAD GUILTY AFTER CASES BEGIN

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty pleas of Lacombe residents James “Pigeon” Ducre, 52, and Adrian Fleming, 20 in separate cases tried in District Court last week. Both defendants pled guilty after their jury trials had begun. Ducre pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine before 22 nd Judicial District Judge Bill Burris with Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presenting the states case. Fleming pled guilty to two counts of simple burglary, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, distribution of cocaine, aggravated burglary, and possession of schedule IV, II, and I drugs. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Patricia Hedges accepted Fleming’s guilty plea with Assistant District Attorney Jack Hoffstadt presenting the states case.

Ducre was arrested in May 2006 by St. Tammany Sheriffs Deputies after 20 grams of cocaine and digital scales were found behind his residence, and in his car. The deputies were on patrol when they observed an unusual gathering of people and a known drug addict in front of Ducre’s home. The cocaine and scales were found after Ducre consented to a search of his property. Judge Burris sentenced Ducre to 15 years in prison with the Department of Corrections.

Fleming who had multiple arrests over the past two years, entered his plea to two counts of simple burglary, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, distribution of cocaine, aggravated burglary, and possession of schedule IV, II, and I drugs and received a 10 year sentence in prison with the Department of Corrections by Judge Hedges.

 

May 7, 2007

NEWS RELEASE

MAN GETS 20 YEARS FOR DWI PLEA AND REVOCATION

 

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the guilty plea of Clinton Desroche, 37 of Madisonville, to a 2 nd fourth offense DWI. A St. Tammany Parish Jury had been selected when the defendant decided to plead guilty as charged Thursday April 26, 2007. 22 nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea and Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparing and presenting the State’s case.

Desroche was arrested in February 2006 by the Louisiana State Police after he crashed his car into a ditch on the edge of Lonesome Road near Mandeville. Desroche had slurred speech, droopy eyelids, and was unable to pass the standard field sobriety test. Desroche admitted to taking several prescription drugs and toxicology tests revealed that he had also taken oxycontin.

Judge Garcia sentenced Desroche to 10 years in prison. In addition, Desroche was already on probation for his 1 st fourth offense DWI. Judge William Knight on Monday, April 30 th, 2007, revoked this probation and gave Desroche 10 years more in prison. The two sentences were ordered to be served consecutively for a total of 20 years.

April 26, 2007

 NEWS RELEASE

MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO AGGRAVATED BURGLARY

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty plea of Dennis Sawyer, 34 of Slidell, to aggravated burglary, domestic abuse battery, and false imprisonment. Sawyer was originally charged with attempted murder but the charge was amended to aggravated burglary after further review of the evidence and consultation with the victims. 22 nd Judicial District Court Judge Peter Garcia accepted the guilty plea Monday, April 23, 2007. Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of the states case.

Sawyer was arrested in August 2005 after he broke into his estranged wife’s home and threatened her and another man with a firearm. The other man was able to wrestle the gun away from Sawyer as shots were fired. 911 was called and the gun was dropped outside as the two victims escaped the residence. Sawyer first came after the victims but then fled in his vehicle. St Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Deputies arrested Sawyer shortly after on a nearby roadway.

Judge Garcia will sentence Sawyer on June 28 th, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of aggravated burglary shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than one year nor more than thirty years. Domestic abuse battery is punishable by a fine of not less than $300 and not more than $1000 and shall be imprisoned for not less than ten days nor more than six months. False imprisonment is punishable by a fine of not more than $200 and imprisoned for not more than six months or both.

April 4, 2007

C0-WORKER PLEADS GUILITY TO ATTEMPTED MURDER

 

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Shaun Dale Warren, 26 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged to attempted 2 nd degree murder and to a felon in possession a gun. The guilty plea was accepted by 22 nd Judicial District William Burris with Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case.

Warren was arrested by Abita Springs Police in May 2006 while he was running from the attempted murder. Warren and a co-worker had an argument in a business parking lot near Mandeville that ended in Warren shooting the victim in the chest. The victim was able to drive himself to the hospital.

Judge Burris sentenced Warren to 10 years in prison without benefit of probation or parole for each charge. The two sentences were ordered to run simultaneously.

 

March 21, 2007

BOGALUSA MAN GETS 25 YEARS FOR POSSESSION OF CHILD PORN

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ross Irwin, 60 of Bogalusa, pled guilty Monday, March 19th, 2007, to 200 counts of possession of child pornography. Irwin’s guilty plea was accepted by 22 nd Judicial District Judge William Knight. Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall was in charge of the State’s case.

Irwin was arrested in February 2006 at his home near Bogalusa after a Washington Parish Sheriff’s Deputy was sent there to check the welfare of a juvenile. The Deputy found the defendant alone but observed pornographic pictures in plain view. The Deputy left and reported to the Juvenile Officer who obtained a search warrant and alerted the Louisiana State Attorney Generals Office. Irwin was arrested after illegal pornographic pictures were collected from his walls, refrigerator, and computer. Irwin’s business cards depicting illegal pornography were also discovered during the search. The evidence was taken to the Attorney Generals Office in Baton Rouge for processing.

Judge Knight sentenced Irwin to 10 years in prison each for counts 1 and 2 and 5 years in prison for count 3 to run consecutively resulting in the 25 year sentence. Judge Knight also sentenced Irwin to 10 years in prison on each of the remaining 197 counts to run concurrently with the 25 years.

 

March 8, 2007
MISSISSIPPI MAN FOUND GUILTY OF AGGRAVATED RAPE

COVINGTON --- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Eric Jett, 38 of Picayune, Mississippi, has been found guilty as charged of aggravated rape. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 2 1/2 hours Wednesday, March 7, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Leigh Anne Wall and Justin Marquez.

Jett was arrested in July 2004 by Slidell Police after the 75 year old victim identified him as her attacker. The victim was awakened after midnight by noise and turned on her bedroom light to find the defendant holding a pair of scissors. The victim grabbed the telephone but was stopped by the defendant’s death threat. Jett then raped the victim and threatened to kill her again. For about two hours the victim begged the defendant not to harm her. Finally Jett took $20 and left on foot. The victim gave police a description of her attacker that led to Jett’s capture about a half mile away. Police brought Jett back to the victim’s home where she positively identified him. Jett admitted to police that he had attacked the victim and his taped confession was played for the Jury.

A few days earlier the victim had made Jett a sandwich when he requested work for food. The victim said she didn’t have any work or money for the defendant but that she didn’t want him to go away hungry.

Judge Knight sentenced Jett Friday, March 9th, 2007, to life in prison at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

NEWS RELEASE

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY OF 3 COUNTS OF ATTEMPTED AGGRAVATED KIDNAPPING

FRANKLINTON--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that August Varnado, 59 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of 3 counts of attempted aggravated kidnapping of a child under 12. A twelve member Washington Parish Jury deliberated for about 20 minutes Wednesday, March 8, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner.

Varnado was arrested by Bogalusa Police and Louisiana Probation and Parole Officers in July 2005 after he tried to lure 3 minor victims into his car. The mother of two of the victims reported the incidents to police. Over the next 24 hours Bogalusa Police were able to identify the suspect from victim descriptions and vehicle information collected from witnesses. Two Probation Officers were notified that the suspect was on probation and they immediately came to Bogalusa to aid in the arrest. Varnado is a registered sex offender.

Judge Childress will sentence Varnado on June 11, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of attempted aggravated kidnapping shall be imprisoned at hard labor for up to 50 years without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

NEWS RELEASE

March 2, 2007
MISSISSIPPI MAN SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kevin Forbes, 52 of Sandy Hook, Mississippi, was sentenced Thursday March 1, 2007, to 15 years in prison for two counts of vehicular homicide and one count of vehicle negligent injuring. Forbes pled guilty to the charges on February 12, 2007 before 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady. Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre was in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case.

Forbes was arrested by State Police in February 2004 after he crossed the yellow line north of Covington on LA 21 and crashed into an oncoming vehicle. The first car coming was able to swerve and miss the defendant but the next vehicle crashed head on resulting in the deaths of the two occupants. Another vehicle was able to avoid crashing into the rear of the victim’s car by swerving into a ditch which caused injuries to the driver. Toxicology reports revealed the presence of cocaine, morphine, and marijuana in the defendant at the time of the crash.

 

February 27, 2007

FORMER PROBATION OFFICER GETS JAIL TIME

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that a former State Probation Officer received a five (5) year probated sentence and two (2) years in jail for offenses occurring while he was supervising a female probationer. Edward Scott Weiler, 44 of Slidell, pled guilty as charged to malfeasance in office and obstruction of justice Monday February 26, 2007. The guilty plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green with Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s cases.

Weiler was arrested after a complaint was filed by an attorney on behalf of a probationer he supervised. The original complaint was reported to the District Attorney’s office who then notified officials with Probation and Parole of the State Department of Corrections and local law enforcement. A Grand Jury reviewed the case and charged Weiler with the offenses. Weiler found drugs in the probationer’s possession through a routine search but did not report it which resulted in the obstruction of justice charge. Weiler also substituted his urine for the probationer’s urine for a drug test resulting in the malfeasance in office charge. Weiler also gave her jewelry and money and engaged in sexual telephone conversations which were recorded.

Judge Green sentenced Weiler to 5 years in prison and suspended 3 years resulting in prison for two years. He will serve 5 years probation upon his release from prison. The two sentences were ordered to run simultaneously.

February 9, 2007

MANDEVILLE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF GIRLFRIEND’S MURDER

COVINGTON --- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that William Wayne Lee, 34 of Mandeville, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 3 hours Friday, February 9, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Joseph Oubre.

Lee was arrested September 16, 2003 for the September 12, 2003, murder of his girlfriend, Audra Bland, 38 of Hammond. Lee and Bland were at a casino on the Mississippi gulf coast when they had a disagreement over Bland’s behavior. The two came to Lee’s parent’s residence in Mandeville around sunrise. Lee admitted putting an unconscious Bland to bed at 6 AM but was unsure what had happened to her. Lee later admitted to police that Bland had fallen and he could not revive her. Lee had guests over all day but didn’t mention anything about Bland. Bland remained in bed all day until 911 was called at 9 PM. The autopsy revealed that Bland died from a blow to the back of the head.

Judge Garcia will sentence Lee on April 2nd, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

February 5, 2007

SECOND MAN FOUND GULITY IN BACK TO BACK TRIALS

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Walter Copeland, 20 of Slidell, has been found guilty of manslaughter. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about 6 hours Saturday, February 3, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green presided over the 6 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo.

Copeland was arrested March 13, 2005, for the March 11, 2005, murder of a Slidell man. Copeland and Michael Wayne Richardson, 23 of Bogalusa, were charged with murder after the victim died of a gunshot wound during a robbery attempt. The two gunmen entered the home by firing through a glass patio door, shot the victim, and stole $700 from the victim’s girlfriend who was unhurt. Richardson was found guilty as charged of 2nd degree murder on Friday, January 26, 2007, after a 5 day trial. Richardson will be sentenced to life in prison February 21, 2007.

Judge Green will sentence Copeland March 19, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of manslaughter shall be imprisonment at hard labor for not more than 40 years

January 31, 2007

LACOMBE MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Robert Marshall, 23 of Lacombe, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour Wednesday, January 31, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the 3 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Leigh Anne Wall.

Marshall was arrested in May 2004 for the murder of a Lacombe man. Marshall was at the victim’s residence in Lacombe and shot him while on the front porch. The victim was airlifted to a Slidell hospital and was able to name the defendant as the one who shot him before he passed away. The victim’s girlfriend was an eyewitness to the shooting incident.

Judge Knight will sentence Marshall Friday, February 2, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

January 30, 2007

District Attorney Walter Reed announces that a decision was rendered by the Louisiana Supreme Court in a St. Tammany Parish distribution of heroin case prosecuted in 1999. This decision supports the State’s position that the life imprisonment at hard labor sentence without benefit of probation or suspension of the sentence imposed in the Wesley Dick case was correct after his conviction for distribution of heroin.

BY KNOLL, J.:

2006-KP-2223 STATE OF LOUISIANA v. WESLEY DICK (Parish of St. Tammany)
(Distribution of Heroin)
C/W 2006-KP-2226 STATE OF LOUISIANA v. MELVIN SMITH (Parish of Orleans)
(Possession With Intent to Distribute Heroin)
Accordingly, the judgment of the First Circuit Court of Appeal is affirmed. The State v. Dick matter is remanded to the district court for execution of the original sentence, in accordance with the court of appeal's ruling. The appellate court decision in State v. Smith is reversed; defendant's original sentence of life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of probation or suspension of sentence is reinstated and the case is remanded to the district court for execution
of sentence.

06-KP-2223 AFFIRMED.


06-KK-2226 REVERSED AND REMANDED.

CALOGERO, C.J., concurs in the result and assigns reasons.
JOHNSON, J., dissents and assigns reasons.
TRAYLOR, J., concurs in the result and assigns reasons.

 

NEWS RELEASE

BOGALUSA MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Michael Wayne Richardson, 23 of Bogalusa, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated for about an hour Friday, January 26, 2007, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Larry Green presided over the 5 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo.

Richardson was arrested March 13, 2005, for the March 11, 2005, murder of a Slidell man. Richardson and Walter Copeland, 20 of Slidell, were charged with murder after shooting the victim during a robbery attempt. The two gunmen entered the home by firing through a glass patio door, shot the victim, and stole $700 from the victim’s girlfriend who was unhurt. Copeland’s trial began Monday, January 29,2007.

Judge Green will sentence Richardson February 21, 2007. Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

 

January 29, 2007

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ethon Henry, 40 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged Wednesday, January 17, 2007, to possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Henry’s guilty plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial Judge Peter Garcia after the jury had been selected. Assistant District Attorney Shea Penton was in charge of the State’s case.

Henry was arrested in February 2006 after a home check by State Probation and Parole Agents. During the random residence visit the agents caught Henry trying to flush cocaine down a toilet.

Judge Garcia sentenced Henry to 7 years in prison with 5 of those years suspended. After serving the remaining 2 years in prison, Henry will be placed on 5 years supervised probation. Official sentencing will take place on February 13, 2007.

BOGALUSA MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO A DRUG CHARGE

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Lynn Jones, 44 of Bogalusa, pled guilty as charged Monday, January 22, 2007, to possession of alprazolam (xanax). Jone’s guilty plea was accepted by 22nd Judicial Judge William Burris after the jury had been selected. Assistant District Attorney Shea Penton was in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s case.

Jones was arrested by Bogalusa Police in February 2006 after he was found in possession of the Schedule IV drugs. Jones was found asleep in his car in a Bogalusa cemetery and had the illegal drugs in his lap. Jones was ordered by Judge Burris to surrender his driver’s license until sentencing.

Judge Burris will sentence Jones on April 4th, 2007. Any person convicted of possession of alprazolam shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than five years and may be required to pay a fine of not more than five thousand dollars.

BOGALUSA WOMAN FOUND GUILTY OF 4TH OFFENSE DWI

Franklinton--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Venessa Fedele, 36 of Bogalusa, was found guilty as charged Monday, January 24, 2007, of 4th offense DWI. 22nd Judicial Judge William Burris presided over the two day trial with Assistant District Attorney Shea Penton presenting the State’s case. The six member jury deliberated about 1 hour before returning the guilty as charged verdict.

Fedele was arrested by a Washington Parish Sheriff’s Deputy in October 2004 after a one car crash. Fedele ran through a stop sign and entered a field striking a tree. The Deputy arrived at the crash scene and found that Fedele had already been transported to the hospital. At the hospital the Deputy noticed Fedele’s slurred speech and initiated a standard field sobriety test.

Judge Burris ordered Fedele remanded to jail until her sentencing, March 20, 2007. Whoever is convicted of a 4th offense DWI shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than ten years nor more than thirty years and shall be fined five thousand dollars. Sixty days of the sentence of imprisonment shall be imposed without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

January 26, 2007

PEARL RIVER MAN PLEADS GUILTY AS CHARGED TO ARMED ROBBERY AND POSSESSION OF COCAINE

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Raymond Scott Nealy, 27 of Pearl River, pled guilty as charged to armed robbery and possession of cocaine Monday, January 22, 2007. The guilty pleas were accepted by 22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine Dimiceli with Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing in charge of preparation and trial of the State’s cases.

Nealy was arrested by Slidell Police at his FEMA trailer in Pearl River March 21, 2006, after he used a knife to rob a convenience store in Slidell March 8, 2006. Nealy told the clerk he had a drug problem and needed money. The armed robbery was captured by a surveillance camera and the clerk identified Nealy as a former customer that lived just down the road in the FEMA trailer park.

In the other case, Nealy, Daniel Lopez, 21 of Pearl River, and the homeowner, Keith Fulton, 37 of Pearl River, were all charged by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office with possession of cocaine in January 2006. Sheriff’s Deputies knocked on Fulton’s door looking for a female fugitive when they were invited in to search. The deputies immediately arrested Lopez on an outstanding warrant and found crack cocaine, a crack pipe, and drug paraphernalia in the kitchen. All three were charged with possession of cocaine. Lopez and Fulton are awaiting trial scheduled for March 12, 2007.

Judge Dimiceli sentenced Nealy to 11 years in prison without benefit of parole for armed robbery and 3 years in prison for possession of cocaine. The two sentences were ordered to run simultaneously.

November 20, 2006

SHOOTER FOUND GUILTY OF MANSLAUGHTER

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed reports the conviction of Brent Lewis, 22 of Covington, for manslaughter. 22nd Judicial District Judge Reginald Badeaux found Lewis guilty Friday night, November 17, 2006, 30 minutes after the conclusion of the 2 day judge trial. Assistant District Attorneys Julie Knight and Bruce Dearing presented the State’s case.

Lewis was arrested in June 2005 and charged with 2nd degree murder after a Lacombe shooting incident. The victim fired a gun into the air to get people’s attention to move the cars that were blocking him from leaving. The gun was retrieved by a female witness as the victim attempted to back out of the driveway. Lewis and another man were in a vehicle that was bumped by the victim’s. The victim tried to back out again and bumped Lewis’ vehicle a second time. Lewis took the gun from the female witness and fired a shot into the windshield of the victim’s truck and then fired a shot into the driver’s door that struck the victim who died a short time later at a Slidell Hospital.

Judge Badeaux will sentence Lewis on January 4, 2007. The law provides that whoever commits manslaughter shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not more that forty years.

October 27, 2006

DRUG DEALER FACES POSSIBLE LIFE SENTENCE AS CAREER CRIMINAL

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Milton Wilson, 48 of Slidell, was found guilty as charged Tuesday, October 24, 2006, of possession with intent to distribute cocaine. A St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty as charged verdict to 22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine Dimiceli. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State’s case.

Wilson was arrested in April 2006 after a traffic stop for speeding by Sheriff’s deputies. Deputies learned that there was a warrant for Wilson’s arrest for failure to appear in court and ordered him to exit the vehicle. Wilson hesitated and was observed trying to hide a cup by his feet as the deputy opened the car door. The deputy saw several pieces of crack cocaine in plain view on the vehicle floorboard. Two baggies each containing several pieces of crack cocaine were found in the cup. A search of the defendant produced $3250 in cash.

Wilson will be sentenced by Judge Dimiceli on December 21, 2006. If found to be a habitual offender Wilson faces the possibility of life in prison Wilson has prior convictions for contraband in a penal institution, 2 counts of distribution of cocaine, possession of stolen property twice, possession of cocaine twice, attempted possession with intent to distribute cocaine, and attempted distribution of cocaine

September 26, 2006

 

MAN FOUND GUILTY OF SECOND DEGREE MURDER

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Ronald Ulfers, 53 of Covington, has been found guilty as charged of second degree murder. A twelve member St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated less than two hours Sunday, September 24, 2006, before returning the guilty verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Peter Garcia presided over the 7 day trial with the State’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Joseph Oubre.

Ulfers was arrested in September 2002 for a September 1996 murder of his wife, Debbie Ulfers. The victim’s death was initially ruled as unclassified but was reclassified as a homicide after a review by another forensic pathologist. The presence of Ulfers’s DNA under the victim’s fingernail played a significant role in proving the defendant’s guilt.

Judge Garcia will sentence Ulfers October 11, 2006. Whoever commits the crime of second degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

September 25, 2006

 

FLORIDA MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CAREER CRIMINAL—GETS 38 YEARS

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Thadeus Williamson, 41 of Pensacola, Florida, has been found guilty of possession of cocaine. The defendant requested a Judge Trial and 22nd Judicial District Judge William Burris found Williamson guilty July 7, 2006. The State’s case was presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

Williamson was arrested in August 2005 after he was observed throwing a baggie of cocaine under a house. The residence had been under police surveillance and 4 controlled buys of cocaine had been made by confidential informants. Police arrived at the residence to execute a search warrant and saw the defendant discard the illegal drugs.

Judge Burris found Williamson to be a Habitual Offender and sentence him Thursday, September 21, 2006, to 38 years in prison. Williamson’s prior convictions include armed robbery, second degree kidnapping, distribution of cocaine, and possession of cocaine.

September 5, 2006

MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED OF RAPE

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the conviction of Donald Thompson, 46 of Slidell, on 2 counts of aggravated rape. A St. Tammany Parish Jury deliberated Friday evening, September 2, 2006, for about 2 ½ hours before returning the guilty as charged verdict. 22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli presided over the trial with the state’s case being presented by Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing.

Thompson was arrested April 28, 2005, after one of the two victims disclosed the sexual abuse to a school counselor. Both victims eventually made disclosures of sexual abuse that occurred over a long period of time.

Judge DiMiceli will sentence Thompson September 11, 2006. Whoever commits the crime of aggravated rape shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

August 30, 2006

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY----GETS LIFE IN PRISON

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty plea of Ronald McNeil, 46, of Slidell. McNeil pled guilty Thursday, August 24, 2006, to aggravated rape. Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo represented the state before 22nd Judicial District Court Judge Donald Fendlason.

McNeil was arrested in July 2004 after the victim told police about the sexual abuse. McNeil confessed to police and has been in jail ever since. McNeil pled guilty just prior to the beginning of the trial.

“It is unusual that a defendant pleads guilty to a life sentence in these cases, commented
District Attorney Reed. However, the weight of the evidence was significant and he was questioned very carefully by the Judge about the consequences of his plea. The State is pleased with this result, but very sad a victim had to suffer so much.” Reed concluded.

Judge Fendlason sentenced McNeil to life in prison without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.

August 29, 2006

3 MEN GUILTY AS CHARGED FOR ILLEGAL DRUGS – REPEAT OFFENDERS RECEIVE LONG PRISON TERMS

Covington--- District Attorney Walter Reed reports that David Jarrell, 47 of Slidell, and David Sosa, 34 of Houston, were found guilty as charged by St. Tammany Parish Juries and Hardin Palmer, 55 of Lacombe, pled guilty as charged after the jury had been selected in recent 22nd Judicial District Court proceedings. 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight presided over the Palmer and Jarrell cases and 22nd Judicial District Judge Martin Coady presided over the Sosa case. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the three unrelated drug cases.

Jarrell was convicted of possession of oxycodone and 2nd offense possession of marijuana on August 15, 2006. Police officers arrested Jarrell in May of 2002 after conducting a “knock and talk” based on a Task Force Hotline tip. A search of the house trailer revealed marijuana and oxycodone. Jarrell faces ten years without parole as an habitual offender. Judge Knight will sentence Jarrell October 31, 2006.

Sosa was convicted of possession of 28 to 200 grams of cocaine on August 24, 2006. Sosa was pulled over in January 2005 for following a tanker truck too close and officers noticed several irregularities with his story. A search of his rental car revealed a well-concealed packet of over 125 grams of pure cocaine destined for resale. Sosa now faces life in prison without benefit of parole as an habitual offender. Judge Coady will sentence Sosa October 26, 2006.

Defendant Palmer pled guilty as charged on August 18, 2006, after the jury was selected for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and possession of hydrocodone. Palmer was arrested in November 2005 after a confidential informant made controlled buys of cocaine from the defendant. A quarter ounce of crack cocaine, hydrocodone, and about $3000 was seized after a search of the defendant’s business in Lacombe. Palmer confessed to a Probation Officer while in jail following his arrest. Palmer was sentenced to 15 years in prison on an habitual offender by Judge Knight.

METH MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON


COVINGTON-----District Attorney Walter Reed reports that John Stafford Lindsey, 39 of Bogalusa, was sentenced to life in prison Monday, April 10, 2006. 22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli sentenced the defendant under the habitual offender law. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State's case for the life sentence.

Lindsey was arrested in April 2004 after an anonymous source gave St. Tammany Sheriff's Deputies a tip as to his location in a local hotel room. Patrol deputies established surveillance and Lindsey's girlfriend provided a fake ID. Police found that a warrant existed for the person whose ID was provided. The hotel room was entered and the defendant was arrested without incident. The defendant's room and truck were both searched yielding methamphetamine residue, pseudo ephedrine, clandestine drug lab trappings, assault rifles, cash, and counter surveillance. State Probation and Parole Officers helped in outlining the long criminal history of the "METH MAN". The previous convictions that qualified the defendant as an habitual offender include conviction on 5 counts of burglary in 1985, possession of codeine and dihydrocodeine in 1989, attempted possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in 1996, possession of methamphetamine in 2002, and attempted possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in 2002.

District Attorney Reed commented that "Lindsey was one of the biggest Methamphetamine cooks in the region." "It's great to get this drug king off the streets for good and away from our children," Reed concluded.

Lindsey's most recent conviction was December 12, 2005, when he was found guilty of attempting to operate a clandestine drug lab, possession of ephedrine, attempted possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and conspiracy to produce and manufacture methamphetamine.

 

MONTANA GETS LIFE IN PRISON

Covington---District Attorney Walter Reed reports the sentencing of Leprease Montana, 31, of Covington to life in prison without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Judge Elaine DiMiceli sentenced Montana yesterday for the 1998 second degree murder of Roger Nave. Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing presented the state's case at trial when Montana was found guilty as charged May 11, 2006. Nave's family was in the court room to hear the sentencing.

Nave had parked his van on a Covington street in November 1998 and began talking to man who had walked up. Montana came toward the van armed with a pistol and wearing a ski mask. Montana stuck the pistol in Nave's face and demanded money. Montana then shot 4 times killing Nave. The man who had walked up to talk to Nave identified Montana by his voice and clothing.

"Keeping this case going all these years took a lot of hard work" D.A. Reed commented. "The victim's family has had a long, tough road and showed great patience" Reed added.

Montana has been in prison on other charges while this case was developed for trial.

SLIDELL MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ARMED ROBBERY AND ATTEMPTED MURDER OF A POLICEMAN

COVINGTON----District Attorney Walter Reed announces the guilty plea of Cecil Delaughter, 25 of Slidell. Delaughter pled guilty as charged Tuesday, June 13, 2006, to armed robbery and attempted second degree murder after a 12 person jury was selected. Assistant District Attorney Gerry Alonzo represented the state before 22' Judicial District Court Judge Donald Fendlason.

Delaughter and an accomplice robbed a man at gun point in September 2004. The robbery victim was told to run off and a shot was fired over his head. Slidell Police were nearby on another matter and heard the shot. The defendant and accomplice saw the Police and ran off but were knocked down by a clothes line. Delaughter jumped to his feet and fired shots at a Slidell Police Officer. The Police returned fire as Delaughter ran away. Delaughter was arrested the next morning.

Brandon Edwards, 19, of Slidell has been charged as Delaughter's accomplice in the armed robbery and is awaiting trial.
"This type of brazen disregard for law and order concerns us all" D. A. Reed commented. "It's a real victory for all law abiding citizens when a criminal of this caliber is taken off the streets and sent to prison" Reed concluded.

Judge Fendlason sentenced Delaughter to 20 years in prison for attempted murder and 10 years in prison for armed robbery to be served simultaneously without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.


MANDEVILLE MAN FOUND GUILTY AS CHARGED--DISCHARGES A WEAPON IN FRONT OF TROOP L

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joseph Brister, 35, of Mandeville was found guilty as charged of a convicted felon carrying a firearm. A St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty verdict Tuesday, June 13, 2006, after a two day trial. Career Criminal Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the State's case before 22" Judicial District Judge William Burris.

Two State Policemen were booking an unrelated prisoner in front of Louisiana State Police Troop L in Mandeville in March 2005 when they both heard two gun shots. One of the troopers moved toward the shots and saw a third muzzle blast from a car on Hwy 190 just across the service road directly in front of Troop L. The troopers were able to chase down Brister and arrest him without incident.

Judge Burris will sentence Brister August 14, 2006. A multiple offender bill of information has been filed under the Habitual Offender Law. Brister faces 20 years to life in prison if found to be an Habitual Offender. Brister has prior convictions of burglary of an inhabited dwelling, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling, and access device fraud.


FLORIDA MAN SENTENCED FOR CARNAL KNOWLEDGE

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Joe Mitchell, 39 of Pensacola, Florida, was sentenced today to years in prison. A St. Tammany Parish Jury found Mitchell guilty as charged of carnal knowledge April 25, 2005. 22ºa Judicial District Judge Martin Coady sentenced Mitchell under the Habitual Offender Law that was filed by Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre who presented the State's case.

The defendant was in the Slidell area staying with family when the sexual abuse occurred in July 2002. Mitchell coerced and intimidated the victim into consenting to the sexual abuse. A few months after the incident the victim confided in her mother and the police were notified. Mitchell. was transported from a Florida prison in June 2005 to stand trial for this charge.

Mitchell was found to be an habitual offender today by Judge Coady. Assistant DA Oubre had filed a multiple offender bill of information under the Habitual Offender Law. Mitchell faced 20 years to life in prison if found to be an Habitual Offender. Between 1982 and the present, the defendant has 10 felony theft convictions , 5 felony burglary convictions, an armed robbery conviction, an aggravated assault conviction, a forgery conviction, and a DWI conviction, all in Florida.

COVINGTON MAN FACES UP TO 60 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON--District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Kim Hogan, 41 of Covington was found guilty as charged Thursday, June 22, 2006, of possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Assistant District Attorney Scott Gardner presented the state's case before 22nd Judicial District Judge Elaine DiMiceli.

Hogan was arrested in July 2004 after an undercover drug task force investigation by the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office and the Slidell Police Department. Video surveillance of illegal drug purchases resulted in a state search warrant for the defendant's trailer just outside Abita Springs. Seven thousand dollars of drug money was seized along with crack cocaine, digital scales, and drug residue on plenty of drug paraphernalia.
"The Habitual Offender Law has given us the ability to keep career criminals off the streets and in prison", D.A. Reed commented. "It's good to see these drug pushers sent away for a long time", Reed added.

Judge DiMiceli will sentence Hogan September 30, 2006. Hogan was arrested by the DEA and convicted of violating federal drug laws in 1992 and served over ten years in federal prison. Due to this prior felony conviction Hogan faces 15 to 60 years in prison without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence. A first offense conviction for possession with intent to distribute cocaine is 5 to 30 years in prison.

NOVOA SENTENCED TO LIFE PLUS 26 YEARS IN PRISON

COVINGTON—District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Juan Novoa 40, of Covington was sentenced Monday June 26, 2006, to life in prison plus 26 years. Novoa, was found guilty as charged in two separate trials in May of this year. In the first trial a six member jury found Novoa guilty of failure to register as a sex offender. In the second trial a twelve member jury found Novoa guilty of 2"d degree battery, unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling, and a felon carrying a concealed weapon. Assistant District Attorneys Scott Gardner and Justin Marquez presented the State's case in the 2 trials before 22nd Judicial District Judge William Knight.

Novoa moved here in late 2005 and never registered as a sex offender. A Massachusetts conviction for sex abuse required the registration with local authorities. The second degree battery occurred in November 2005 and happened in Covington. Novoa slammed the victim against a door edge. The victim was able to call the Covington Police after she regained consciousness. The unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling resulted from Novoa running from police and hiding in a vacant adjoining apartment where he was discovered hiding in a closet. The felon carrying a concealed weapon occurred when police found a large knife concealed on the defendant when he was arrested and searched.

District Attorney Walter Reed commented that "career criminals in this district will feel the full force of the state's habitual offender law when their actions show that they refuse to follow the rule of law and harm others. This life sentence plus 26 years is well deserved for this offender."
Judge Knight sentenced Novoa as a career criminal under the state's habitual offender law in both cases. Novoa has prior convictions for robbery in 1992, assault and battery in 1992, indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 in 1993, larceny in 1997, possession of cocaine in 1997, and another conviction for indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 in 1999 all in Massachusetts.

SLIDELL WOMAN FOUND GUILTY OF 6 COUNTS OF DISTRIBUTION OF COCAINE----FACES 20 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON AS HABITUAL OFFENDER

COVINGTON---District Attorney Walter Reed reports that Rose Freeman, 49, of Slidell was found guilty as charged Thursday, July 13, 2006, of 6 counts of distribution of cocaine. The 12 member St. Tammany Parish Jury returned the guilty as charged verdict in less than 1 hour. Assistant District Attorney Joseph Oubre presented the state’s case before 22nd District Judge Peter Garcia.

Rose Freeman, her son Kenneth, 32, and Andrew “Boe” Long, Jr., 35, all of Slidell were arrested in October 2004 after an undercover narcotics officer bought crack cocaine and prescription drugs from them. Slidell Police enlisted a St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Narcotics Deputy to buy the illegal drugs in August through October 2004 after getting intelligence that the two Freemans and Long, Jr. were trafficking illegal drugs in the Slidell area. It was determined that Rose Freeman was the head of the operation and upon arrest she admitted to police that she was going to Orleans to buy more crack and “take care of business” but would not reveal her source. Kenneth Freeman pled guilty as charged after the jury was selected to 5 counts of distribution of cocaine in November 2005 and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Andrew “Boe” Long, Jr. pled guilty to 2 counts of distribution of cocaine in November 2005 and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Rose Freeman will be sentenced by Judge Garcia August 7, 2006 7th. If found to be an habitual offender Freeman will face 20 years to life in prison Freeman has prior convictions for distribution of cocaine in 1997 and 1988, a 1986 conviction for possession of cocaine and stolen property, and a 1986 conviction for shoplifting in Florida.
 


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