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June 12, 2018 - 12:00 am


Prisoners accused of illegally entering US held in Louisiana

(Information from: The Times,

SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) — Authorities say more than 50 people accused of entering the United States illegally are being held at a Louisiana parish medium-security facility.

Maj. Charles Gray with the Bossier Sheriff's Office tells The Times of Shreveport that the federal prisoners are male and began arriving Monday morning.

Gray says the detainees are of the lowest security level since they have not been convicted of any crimes and that the federal government pays Bossier Parish more than $60 per day, per inmate.

More than 150 inmates were moved to other parish facilities in order to accommodate the detainees.

The newspaper says the men will be held in the Bossier facility until federal courts determine the outcome of each of their cases.



Camp Minden explosives: Last defendant's trial now Jan. 7

The last defendant's trial has been postponed in a case involving a huge explosion at a site leased from the Louisiana National Guard. A federal judge's office said Tuesday that William Terry Wright is now scheduled for trial Jan. 7.

He and Charles Ferris Callihan had been scheduled for trial Monday, but Callihan pleaded guilty Friday to a reduced charge.

Documents made public Tuesday show Callihan pleaded guilty to making a false representation by leaving the explosive TNT off of a list of substances sent to a landfill that couldn't take hazardous waste.

The maximum penalty is two years in prison and a $50,000 fine.

He'd been charged with one count each of conspiracy and making false statements. Each carries up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.


Soldier pleads to detonating chemical weapon near base

LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) — A soldier has pleaded guilty to making and detonating explosives that released chlorine gas in a forest near an Army base in Louisiana last year.

U.S. Attorney David Joseph's office says 24-year-old Ryan Keith Taylor, of New Llano, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison after pleading guilty Monday to producing, possessing and using a chemical weapon.

Authorities said Taylor set off explosives that released toxic gas into the air in Kisatchie National Forest, adjacent to Fort Polk, on April 12, 2017.

A court filing says a military police investigator felt his skin burning while collecting samples at the blast site. The filing says the investigator was permanently injured and must be medically discharged from the military.

A federal judge is scheduled to sentence Taylor on Sept. 12.


Scandal-plagued ex-Louisiana official dead at 64

CHALMETTE, La. (AP) — David Peralta, who served one term as the president of Louisiana's St. Bernard Parish, has died at age 64.

A parish government news release says Peralta was found dead in his home in Meraux (MIH'-row) on Tuesday. New Orleans-area news outlets report that the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff's office said the death appeared to be from natural causes.

Peralta spent 40 years in public sector work, including police work in New Orleans and St. Bernard. He won the parish presidency in 2011. But his term was marred by scandal. His then-wife accused him of sexual abuse. Charges of sexual battery and stalking were eventually dropped but legal woes continued.

He lost a re-election bid in 2015. In 2016 he pleaded no contest to felony counts of malfeasance in office.


Man, woman arrested in slaying of man in Louisiana

GONZALES, La. (AP) — Authorities say a Louisiana man and woman have been arrested in the shooting death of another man.

The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post Tuesday that 24-year-old Kirpatrick Morrison and 22-year-old Lauren Donaldson were acquaintances of 23-year-old Christopher Goudeau.

Authorities tell news outlets that Morrison and Donaldson were at Goudeau's residence when an argument turned into a physical altercation.

Authorities say Morrison shot the victim and the pair fled the scene. The East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office apprehended them after they were involved in a traffic accident in Baton Rouge.

Morrison and Donaldson were charged with first-degree murder. Morrison was also booked on a count of aggravated assault. It's unclear if they have lawyers.


Grambling State hires new chief of police

GRAMBLING, La. (AP) — Grambling State University has a new leader at the helm of its police department.

University officials Tuesday said that Carlos Kelly has been appointed to the position, taking over for interim Chief Lt. Ruby Jones, who will stay with the department.

Kelly brings more than 21 years of law enforcement experience to the job. Previously, he served as lieutenant commander for the Massachusetts College of Art and Design and worked at the Philadelphia Housing Authority Police Department, America's third largest housing agency.


Audit: High turnover at Louisiana youth prisons risks safety

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A new audit is raising safety concerns about Louisiana's youth prisons.

The review by Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera's office, released Monday, says high employee turnover has made it difficult for the Office of Juvenile Justice to properly monitor the youth lock-ups — known as secure care facilities.

The Bridge City facility in southeast Louisiana has a turnover rate that tops 62 percent.

The audit found that fighting is on the rise, and the prison facilities aren't always made to correct safety-related issues identified in monitoring.

Purpera's office says Louisiana has four secure care facilities, housing about 276 juveniles at any time.

In a written response, the Office of Juvenile Justice says it's working to enact the auditors' recommendations for improvement. The agency, however, could face sizable budget cuts in July.


Man surrenders in connection with shooting at child's party

MINDEN, La. (AP) — A suspect has turned himself in to authorities in connection with a shooting outside a child's birthday party in Louisiana.

Northwest Louisiana news outlets report that 18-year-old Simuel Shaw got into an argument with 26-year-old LaTravion Minix Sunday night at the Victory Park Community Center in Minden.

Minix was shot later and taken to a hospital. He was treated and released.

Shaw fled but turned himself in Tuesday. His bond was set at more than $1 million. Information on his attorney was not available.

He faces charges that include attempted second-degree murder.

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