Local News

DPSO Investigates Apparent Inmate Suicide

The DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office is investigating the apparent suicide of an inmate late Friday afternoon. Brandon Binning,36, of Mansfield hung himself in a jail cell in the DeSoto Parish Detention Center. Correctional officers were not aware of any threats of suicide, Chief Deputy Ray Sharrow said. Binning was in a cell by himself but in a pod with other inmates. He was held on a protective order related to domestic abuse charges, Sheriff Jayson Richardson said. Sharrow expects to have more details from the investigation Tuesday. https://www.ktbs.com/news/dpso-investigates-apparent-inmate-suicide/article_e62a80aa-9ec0-11ea-8b8c-8f43d3c1f662.html

La. State Trooper Dies of Injuries, Marking First LSP Line of Duty Death Since 2015

Louisiana State Police (LSP) Trooper George Baker, 33, died Sunday, May 24, surrounded by a vigil of family, friends, and fellow troopers, his colleagues said.

Baker’s death marks the first LSP line of duty death since 2015.

He is the 30th trooper to die in the line of duty in LSP’s history.

Baker was injured Wednesday, May 20, while assisting in a police chase through Hammond, La., near Wardline Road west of I-55.

Baker and another trooper successfully placed a tire deflation device in the road to stop the fleeing vehicle.

A Hammond Police Department unit involved in the chase hit the troopers as they attempted to retrieve the device from the road, officials said.

Both injured troopers were treated at North Oaks Medical Center. The other trooper was released with minor injuries later the same day.

Nathan Anding, 18, of Holden, and Taylor Cox, 26, of Hammond, were arrested in connection with the chase.

LSP officials said Baker was a ten-year law enforcement and military veteran.

His colleagues said becoming an LSP trooper was a “lifelong desire” of his.

He spent 8 years in the United States Marine Corps Reserve, including one combat deployment in the Middle East, as preparation, LSP officials said in the announcement of his death.

Bakers experience also included four years with the Greensburg Police Department – his first law enforcement job – and three years serving with the St. Helena Parish Sheriff’s Office.

He began service with LSP’s Troop L in November of 2017, officials said.

In a statement to troopers, State Police Superintendent Colonel Kevin Reeves said, “Trooper Baker passed today leaving our hearts heavy but full of pride as he exemplified our values of duty, selfless service, and personal courage.”

Governor John Bel Edwards also released a statement.

“My heart is heavy at the passing of Trooper Baker, who served the people of our state with honor and dedication and died from injuries sustained in the line of duty. His selfless commitment to his fellow Louisianans represents the best of us and he continues to serve even after his passing by having his organs donated to help others in need. His courage and bravery will never be forgotten,“ said Edwards. “Please join Donna and me in praying for Trooper Baker, his wife Heather, daughter Harper, family, friends, and countless others as they mourn this great loss. Our thoughts are also with all members of Louisiana State Police, who have lost a true teammate and brother today.”

In addition to his wife Heather and their young daughter Harper, Baker is survived by his parents, his sisters, and his extended family, officials said.

Donations are being accepted at www.latroopers.org and through direct donations to the Louisiana Troopers Charities – Trooper Baker.

LSP officials commended Baker for registering as an organ donor before his death.

“Even after his death, Trooper Baker continues to show his commitment to community and selfless service by donating his organs so that others may live,” officials said.

Baker will be buried at a later date and afforded full honors earned with a line of duty death.

The last LSP line of duty death was August 24, 2015.

Senior Trooper Steven Vincent, 44, of LSP’s Troop D, died after being shot in the head during a traffic stop in Calcasieu Parish on August 23, 2015.

A jury recommended Vincent’s killer face the death penalty in July of 2019.

Baker’s death is the first line of duty death for LSP’s Troop L since the death of Trooper Rudolph H. Miller on Sept. 8, 1962.

Miller was killed after being hit by a vehicle on U.S. 51 in Tangipahoa Parish.

Prior to Baker’s death his colleague, Tpr. Michael Bennett, of LSP’s Troop C, penned a letter asking for prayers for troopers as they serve their communities.

You see us out there. Driving on your commute to work, school, home, or church. You see our patrol units. Immaculate white. Clean. Red reflective letters. Dark blue boot on the door.

You know what is inside that car. A man or woman clad in dark blue, trimmed in gold piping. Gold boot badge and gold buckle. Mirror-shined boots. Blue Smokey hat. A Louisiana State Trooper.

You see us on the side of the road. Writing tickets during traffic enforcement. Investigating a traffic crash. Sometimes arresting a poor soul who made a bad choice and decided to drive after having too much to drink.

You don’t see how difficult it is to get this job. The hiring process. The multiple interviews. The long waits for a phone call to see if you get a chance to be one of the best.

You don’t see the jumping up and down in excitement when you finally get the call and receive the offer of employment. The sense of awe you feel when you finally realize you’re getting a chance to wear the blue and gold.

You don’t see the training academy. Six months of physical and mental endurance. Tens of thousands of push ups. Hundreds of miles of running and swimming. The unbelievable soreness. The sleepless nights. Thousands of hours of lectures and study. Range time. Driver training. Officer survival. Being away from our family for all but 2 nights a week…often to spend those nights at home studying for an exam when we return.

You don’t see the sense of pride on graduation day. The way our chest swells and most eyes mist when our loved one pins that badge on our uniform for the first time. You don’t hear the thunder from our boots marching as we sing “Hail, State Police” in cadence. You don’t see the feeling of accomplishment for graduating and the weight of responsibility that was just placed on your shoulders.

There is so much more that you don’t see. We are husbands and wives, brother and sisters, sons and daughters, fathers and mothers. We chose a different path in life than most and we are both loved and hated for it. I, for one, understand that. The badge we wear does not make us any stronger. It serves to hold us to a higher standard. We took this job to help people and we take it very seriously.

Now, as I write this, one of us is down. Critically injured while assisting another agency. Regardless of fault, one of us lies in God’s hands. A husband, father, brother, and son. A former United States Marine who chose to continue to serve the public. It could have been any one of us. We have all been in a similar situation that could have caused such a traumatic outcome.

We all knew the risks when we took this profession. When we raised our right hand and took our oath. That being said, none of that makes this any easier.

Please, pray. Pray for the family. The doctors. The medical staff. Pray for everyone that has to try to put this in the back of their mind and suit up today for their tour of duty.

Search for Missing 79-Year-Old Carthage Man Continues

 Law enforcement across East Texas are continuing their search for a 79-year-old Carthage man.

A Silver Alert was issued last Thursday for Joe Roy McMillian after he did not return from running errands.

Surveillance photos show McMillian getting serviced and leaving Ted’s Saw Shop in the Clayton area, near the Clayton Volunteer Fire Department.

“From that point, there was a sighting of his truck in the Nacogdoches area approximately an hour and a half or a little bit longer after he left that place of business,” said Kevin Lake, Panola County sheriff.

Lake said McMillian is diabetic and did not have medication with him and was also suffering from early signs of dementia, according to his family.

“We have also checked hospitals in between Panola County and Houston,” Lake said. “And the reason Houston is because he does have family that lives in Houston and we were just concerned that maybe he was going that direction since his truck was observed in Nacogdoches sometime later.”

The sheriff’s office is continuing the search.

“Basically just riding every county road, lease road, gravel road, anything that we can find that he may have been able to access, we’re just riding those areas in our vehicle to see if we can locate his truck,” Lake said.

The family has offered a reward up to $5,000 for credible information leading to the discovery of McMillian.

If you have any information you can call the Panola County Sheriff’s Office at (903)-693-0333.

https://www.ktre.com/2020/05/25/search-missing-year-old-carthage-man-continues/

Boil Advisory

Please be advised that a boil advisory has been issued for the area of Cedar Grove Road to Highway 6 and all surrounding areas.

Houston County Sheriff’s Office Searching for Missing Woman

The Houston County Sheriff’s Office is asking the public for help locating a missing woman.

According to the Houston County Sheriff’s Office, Stephanie Michelle Holloway, 43, left her home in the Porter Springs area of the county on foot at approximately 9:30 a.m. Thursday.

She was last seen wearing gray sweat pants with a gray t-shirt and gray tennis shoes.

The sheriff’s office said Holloway has mental issues.

If you have seen her, please call the Houston County Sheriff’s Office at (936) 544-2862.

https://www.ktre.com/2020/05/21/houston-county-sheriffs-office-searching-missing-woman/

Suspect Charged After Newton County Pursuit and Crash

A 29-year-old man from the Trout Creek area has been charged following an incident in Newton County. According to Sheriff Billy Rowles, 29-year-old Michael Land, Jr. is accused of stealing a Newton County Sheriff’s Department patrol SUV and later slamming head-on into a Newton Police Department patrol car.

Land is charged with attempt to take weapon from officer, and Chief Deputy Cynthia Hall says more charges are expected to be filed. Land’s bond amount was not available as of Thursday.

According to Sheriff Rowles, it happened at about 2:00 Tuesday morning when one of his deputies stopped a vehicle near the Newton County Courthouse. Rowles said “The driver refused to respond to deputies. A scuffle ensued and the subject entered the deputy’s unit and left headed south on Hwy 87”.

Rowles said the Newton Police Department fell in pursuit of the stolen sheriff’s department SUV and they traveled about 12 miles south of Newton on Highway 87 when the suspect turned around and rammed head-on into the Newton police car.

According to Rowles, the suspect then ran on foot into a wooded area where he was captured, and then taken to Jasper Memorial Hospital where he was seen and released, and then transported to the Newton County Jail.

As for the officer, Rowles said “A Newton PD officer was life flighted to the hospital where he was treated for head injuries.”

Meanwhile, Newton County Deputy Landon Cargill is disputing the official statement from his boss, Sheriff Billy Rowles. Cargill said “I didn’t fight the driver of this vehicle he was a passenger and refused to be detained. A foot pursuit followed by me catching him and I fought him alone for about 15-20 seconds before another officer that was off duty assisted me. This guy attempted to grab my duty pistol and after this officer and I could still not gain control I request that officer to let him go so I can deploy my taser. Taser had absolutely no effect on the male and kept running and entered the driver’s seat of my patrol car where he then drove off at a high rate of speed. Suspect was eventually in custody and transported to JMH were we found out the he was under the influence of both meth and PCP (Which explains why he felt no pain from the taser).”

Cargill went on to say “It has since then been explained better”.

https://www.kjas.com/news/local_news/article_47fb4382-9ba1-11ea-8b03-9faaae697d05.html

2 killed in Shelby County plane crash

Authorities are investigating a plane crash in Shelby County.

According to Center fire chief Keith Byndom, the plane crashed into a wooded area behind Watson and Sons Funeral Home near State Highway 7 across from the Center Municipal Airport.

A FAA statement said the plane involved was a single-engine Cessna 206 and was destroyed upon impact.

The FAA has confirmed that two people died in a plane crash in Shelby County on Wednesday.

The FAA reported that local authorities confirmed two deaths.

According to Center fire chief Keith Byndom, the plane crashed into a wooded area behind Watson and Sons Funeral Home near State Highway 7 across from the Center Municipal Airport.

From the FAA:

A single-engine Cessna 206 crashed this evening under unknown circumstances, about a quarter-mile south of Center Municipal Airport in Center, Texas. The plane was destroyed upon impact. The FAA and the NTSB will investigate, and the NTSB will be in charge. Please contact local officials for information on the condition of the occupants. The FAA and NTSB do not release names. We defer to local officials to release those at the appropriate time. We will release the tail number after investigators verify it at the crash site.

DPS said they and other first responders located the crash site at approximately 4:40 p.m. just south of the airport.

https://www.ktre.com/2020/05/21/killed-shelby-county-plane-crash/

COVID-19 IN SWLA: 26 Additional Local Cases, Two Additional Deaths

Twenty-six additional cases were reported in Allen Parish and two additional deaths were reported in Southwest Louisiana when the Department of Health released its daily report.

Previously, there were no additional deaths from COVID-19 for a consecutive week until Tuesday. The two new deaths were reported in Calcasieu Parish.

There have now been 825 confirmed cases and 64 deaths from COVID-19 in Southwest Louisiana.

The Department of Health also reported that across the state, an additional 3,600 patients are believed to have recovered from the virus. There are now 26,249 patients presumed to have recovered.

Statewide, 278 additional cases and 27 additional deaths were reported.

There have now been 35,316 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 2,485 deaths in Louisiana.

The Department of Health reported that there are currently 931 people in Louisiana hospitalized from COVID-19 and 110 on ventilators.

https://www.kplctv.com/2020/04/23/covid-swla/

Water Rescue

Natchitoches Fire District 4 was paged out at 01:17 for a rescue of a vehicle submerged off LA 117. The highway was blocked by high water starting north of Bellwood.

The Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office also responded with a marine unit. The occupants of the vehicle were uninjured, and the vehicle was recovered by Tony’s Towing service.

FD4 urges motorists to not take chances crossing flooded areas of the roadways, especially when visibility is poor due to weather or night time conditions. The High Water warning signs placed by the LA DOT are to remind motorists that possible and probable dangerous conditions exist in that area.

https://www.facebook.com/pg/TheCenlaReport/posts/

COVID-19 IN SWLA: 15 Additional Local Cases, No Additional Deaths

For a consecutive week, no additional deaths from COVID-19 were reported in Southwest Louisiana when the Department of Health released its daily report.

Fifteen additional cases were reported in the area – 13 of those in Allen Parish. Calcasieu and Jeff Davis reported one new case.

There have now been 799 confirmed cases and 62 deaths from COVID-19 in Southwest Louisiana.

The Department of Health also reported that across the state, an additional 3,600 patients are believed to have recovered from the virus. There are now 26,249 patients presumed to have recovered.

Statewide, 329 additional cases and 18 additional deaths were reported.

There have now been 35,038 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 2,458 deaths in Louisiana.

The Department of Health reported that there are currently 1,004 people in Louisiana hospitalized from COVID-19 and 112 on ventilators.

 

ALLEN – 131 case(s) | 10 death(s) | 43 state tests | 749 commercial tests

BEAUREGARD – 52 case(s) | 4 death(s) | 15 state tests | 1,083 commercial tests

CALCASIEU – 521 case(s) | 40 death(s) | 188 state tests | 8,813 commercial tests

CAMERON – 3 case(s) | 0 death(s) | 1 state tests | 110 commercial tests

JEFF DAVIS – 71 case(s) | 6 death(s) | 402 state tests | 1,013 commercial tests

VERNON – 21 case(s) | 2 death(s) | 8 state tests | 1,097 commercial tests

STATE – 35,038 case(s) | 2,458 death(s) | 12,432 state tests | 265,641 commercial tests | 1,004 COVID-19 patients hospitalized | 112 patients on ventilators | 26,249 patients presumed recovered.

One Man in Hospital and Another in Jail Following Police Chase and Crash

One person is in the hospital and another in jail following a high-speed police chase and crash in nearby Newton County.

Sheriff Billy Rowles said the series of events began shortly before 2:00 on Tuesday morning when a deputy from his department performed a routine traffic stop near the Newton County Courthouse.

Rowles said that upon meeting the driver of the vehicle a scuffled began and before it was over the driver jumped into the deputy’s patrol car and took off. A chase ensued and an officer from the Newton Police Department soon joined the pursuit.

Rowles said that following a back and forth chase that spanned almost 12 miles south on Highway 87, the suspect suddenly turned the sheriff’s car around and hit the Newton Police vehicle head on.

Following the crash the driver of the run away vehicle reportedly ran into a nearby wooded area but was soon captured by officers who chased him into the woods.

The officer who was driving the police car was taken by helicopter to a hospital in Beaumont, where he treated and was later released. The suspect was taken to Christus Jasper Memorial Hospital, where he was treated, before being transported to the Newton County Jail, where he was at last word still being held.

The names of the injured police officer and the suspect have not been released. However, KJAS Radio News has learned that the suspect is a resident of the Trout Creek Community.

On Wednesday, Newton County Deputy Landon Cargill disputed a statement from his boss, Sheriff Billy Rowles. Cargill said “I didn’t fight the driver of this vehicle he was a passenger and refused to be detained. A foot pursuit followed by me catching him and I fought him alone for about 15-20 seconds before another officer that was off duty assisted me. This guy attempted to grab my duty pistol and after this officer and I could still not gain control I request that officer to let him go so I can deploy my taser. Taser had absolutely no effect on the male and kept running and entered the driver’s seat of my patrol car where he then drove off at a high rate of speed. Suspect was eventually in custody and transported to JMH were we found out the he was under the influence of both meth and PCP (Which explains why he felt no pain from the taser).”

Cargill went on to say “It has since then been explained better”.

https://www.kjas.com/news/local_news/article_2ab15800-99e1-11ea-ad02-b7a84c678da7.html

Police: Three Injured in Shooting in Many

Three people are recovering after a shooting Tuesday in Many.

Many Police said Anthony W. Kimbrough was charged with three counts of attempted first degree murder in connection to a shooting “on or around Esso Drive”.

Authorities recovered several weapons, but they are working to find the relation to the shooting, according to the social media post.

Several other charges are pending, according to officers.

https://www.ktbs.com/news/police-three-injured-in-shooting-in-many/article_81fe7b9a-9a38-11ea-9aaf-eb63cd052a59.html

Woman Arrested After Horse’s Death in Beauregard Parish

 A DeRidder woman has been arrested after the death of a horse in Beauregard Parish.

Photos of the horse that circulated on Facebook showed severe injuries to the horse’s jaw.

Mark Herford, sheriff-elect in Beauregard, said that the Beauregard Sheriff’s Office received a complaint about an “injured and neglected” horse on Sunday, May 17. Deputies seized the horse on Monday, May 18, and contacted a veterinarian to examine the animal.

However, the horse “succumbed to the injuries before the veterinarian could arrive,” Herford said.

Sheral G. Zeno, of DeRidder, was arrested on one count of cruelty to animals at 11:51 a.m. on Tuesday, May 19. Bond was set at $10,000.

Herford said a vet examined the horse after its death and is preparing findings for the Sheriff’s Office.

https://www.kplctv.com/2020/05/19/woman-arrested-after-horses-death-beauregard-parish/

Police in Jasper and Silsbee Investigate Auto Thefts

Jasper Police along with officers in Silsbee are investigating the theft of several vehicles from auto dealerships here and in Silsbee.

Officer Josh Hadnot said the stolen the vehicles taken included a white 2016 Ford XLT Ford crew cab truck with four-wheeled drive that was stolen from Jasper Ford on North Wheeler Street.

Hadnot said that in addition, a white Dodge Ram 2500 Laramie crew cab truck with four-wheel drive that was reportedly stolen from Silsbee Ford-Lincoln-Mercury.

Officers also report that a 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe sport utility vehicle, a black 2018 Cadillac Escalade sport utility vehicle and a gray 2018 Ford F-150 pick up truck that were all stolen from Morris Moore Chevrolet in Silsbee.

Hadnot said the Cadillac and the Ford F-150 had since been recovered in the Houston Area; however, who stole the vehicles is still unknown as the investigation continues.

Hadnot and others are asking anyone that might have information about the crime to come forth. They say you do not have to give your name if you do not want to.

https://www.kjas.com/news/local_news/article_ac929294-994b-11ea-bcad-830acc8f5bb8.html

Weekend Road Rage Incident Results in Arrests

On Saturday, May 16, 2020, shortly after 11:30 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop E responded to a motorist that was being harassed by two vehicles.  The incident occurred northbound on Interstate 49, south of Alexandria.
As all three vehicles continued northbound, Troopers responded to the area and were able to identify the two suspect vehicles, as well as the complainant vehicle.  Troopers then stopped a 2018 Kia, driven by 45-year-old Liza L. Pacheco of San Tan Valley, AZ, and a 2019 Chevrolet SUV, driven by 39-year-old Alonzo Reyes of Tolleson, AZ, in an attempt to investigate the situation.  Initially, all the vehicles stopped, but shortly after stopping, Reyes fled the scene and a vehicle pursuit ensued.
As the pursuit continued, the Chevrolet traveled northbound on Interstate 49, into the city limits of Alexandria.  Eventually, Reyes abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot.  He was later located by an Alexandria police officer and turned over to Troopers.  Reyes was arrested and booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center.  He was charged with reckless operation, aggravated obstruction of a highway of commerce, speeding, driving the wrong direction on a one-way road, improper turning, failure to yield at a stop sign/yield sign, failure to signal, improper lane usage, driving left of center, flight from an officer, obstruction of justice, and possession of firearm by a convicted felon.
Pacheco was arrested and booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center for obstruction of justice, aggravated obstruction of a highway of commerce, and reckless operation of a vehicle.