Local News

Boil Advisory

The Town of Many Water System is under a boil advisory for the area of Hwy 6 from Randy’s Cooking Shack to Matthews Lodge Road until Further Notice.

Dallas Woman Killed in Rapides Parish Crash

A Dallas, Texas woman is dead following a single-vehicle crash Sunday in Rapides Parish.

State Police said Shawn Richardson, 55, was driving an 18-wheeler south on U.S. Highway 71 at Shirley Road around 3:20 p.m. when she lost control and the truck left the right side of the road. It then overturned. Richardson was pronounced dead at the scene.

Troopers said Richardson was wearing a seatbelt. Routine toxicology tests are pending, and the crash remains under investigation.

There have been 21 fatal crashes with 23 people killed in the Troop E region this year.

https://www.kalb.com/content/news/Dallas-Woman-Killed-in-Rapides-Parish-Crash-511728182.html

Missing Man in Polk County Has Been Found Dead

A man reported missing in Polk County has been found dead.

According to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Michael John Butcher, 19, was found to be deceased from an apparent four wheeler crash.

Butcher had been reported missing from his home on FM 1988 in Goodrich.

Texas Veterinarian Indicted on Rape, Sexual Battery Charges in Louisiana

A Texas veterinarian was indicted on rape and sexual battery charges in Allen Parish Thursday.

Todd Michael Glover was indicted on one count of first-degree rape and three counts of sexual battery. According to the indictment, the charges revolve around two girls, both of whom were 17 on Dec. 1, 2018, the date of the allegations.

Glover was a veterinarian in Galveston County, Texas.

The alleged incident happened at Coushatta Casino Resort. Coushatta Tribal Police investigated the case.

Glover was arrested by Texas Rangers at his home in Webster, Texas, on Dec. 26.

KPRC reported in March that Glover’s office was raided and reported in April that one of the girls has sued him.

https://www.kplctv.com/2019/06/21/texas-veterinarian-indicted-rape-sexual-battery-charges-allen-parish/

Commissioner of Insurance Warns of Genetic Testing Scheme Targeting Medicare Beneficiaries

 A genetic testing fraud scheme is targeting Medicare beneficiaries, according to James Donelon, Louisiana’s Commissioner of Insurance.

Beneficiaries are being targeted through phone calls, booths at health fairs, tables at grocery stores and pharmacies, and door-to-door visits to participate in free genetic testing and cancer screenings. Donelon said the screenings are a fraudulent means for scammers to obtain Medicare information for identity theft or fake billing purposes.

The Better Business Bureau is reporting several states, including Kentucky, Nebraska and South Carolina, have issued warnings about the screenings, which involve collecting DNA cells swabbed from inside a person’s cheek.

Donelon said beneficiaries can avoid becoming a victim of Medicare fraud by doing the following:

  • Do not give out your Medicare number or Social Security number. Be cautious of unsolicited requests for your Medicare or Social Security numbers. If your personal information is compromised, it may be used in other fraud schemes.
  • Do not consent to any lab tests at senior centers, health fairs or in your home. Be suspicious of anyone claiming that genetic testing/cancer screenings are at no cost to you.
  • Genetic tests and cancer screenings must be medically necessary and ordered by your doctor to be covered by Medicare. Random genetic testing and cancer screenings are not covered by Medicare. If you are interested in the test, speak with your doctor first.
  • Monitor your Medicare Summary Notice (MSN) to see if there are any services you did not have or did not want but were billed for. Medicare Summary Notices are sent every three months if you get any services or medical supplies during that 3-month period.

A non-profit organization from St. Louis alerted BBB after a representative from a testing company offered to give a presentation to a group of senior citizens, according to information from Sharane Gott, CEO of the Acadiana BBB. The non-profit told BBB a man wanted to collect DNA samples after delivering a short presentation. The non-profit told the man that he could give a presentation but not take samples. The man did not show up to the scheduled presentation.

BBB spoke to the man who offered to give the presentation. He said the business collects DNA swabs from its clients and does genetic screening on the samples at no cost to the consumer. He said the company collects the consumer’s Medicare or Medicaid information and files insurance claims on the client’s behalf. The man said he did not have a medical degree.

A BBB investigator was able to watch a training webinar presented by the man’s company. The presenter told viewers they could not entice anyone to take the test by giving them either money or a gift to participate. He said the company could not use the word “free” when promoting the screenings but rather refer to it as a “no cost” screening since insurance will be billed for the tests. Webinar attendees were told to “dress to impress” and to always “wear a badge.”

BBB was able to obtain a copy of the requisition forms the business submits with the DNA samples. While consumers are not required to share their Social Security number, the business does ask the consumer for their insurance information, and consumers are required to let the business take photos of their photo ID as well as their insurance cards.

Sabine County Man Arrested on Child Pornography Charges

A Sabine County man was arrested on several child pornography charges.

According to the office of Attorney General Ken Paxton, his office’s Child Exploitation Unit arrested Walter James Sanders Jr., 66, of Hemphill on five counts of possession of child pornography.

The office reported the unit was alerted by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that Sanders allegedly uploaded pornographic images of minors to an internet search engine.

During an executed search warrant, investigators found more images on a digital storage device found within Sander’s residence according to Paxton’s office. They then seized several digital storage devices to be examined by the Digital Forensics Unit.

In a press release, Paxton’s office stated “Attorney General Paxton’s office works to protect children by using the latest technology to track down some of the most profoundly evil predators online. Since its inception, the Child Exploitation Unit has made 326 arrests and obtained 580 convictions on charges for possession of child pornography.”

https://www.ksla.com/2019/06/20/sabine-county-man-arrested-child-pornography-charges/

VPSO Makes Arrest for Domestic Abuse and Attempted First Degree Murder

The Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office reports that they were contacted about a domestic incident that occurred in a vehicle.

During the incident, the male, Chris Thibodeaux, 41, threw the female out of the vehicle.

The female was taken by ambulance to an area hospital for treatment. Deputies spoke with witnesses who provided information identifying the suspect.

The Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office issued a BOLO and the suspect was stopped by the Merryville Police Department.

A warrant was issued and Christ Thibodeaux was arrested on charges of domestic abuse battery and attempted first degree murder.

http://www.westcentralsbest.com/todays_country_1057/news/vpso-makes-arrest-for-domestic-abuse-and-attempted-first-degree/article_7e1aa0ba-9397-11e9-a4a7-db899eb4a8ff.html

Body found in Vernon Parish Identified as New Llano Man

Authorities have identified the body of a man that was discovered last week in Vernon Parish.

The body of Joshua Bond, 34, of New Llano, was located by a jogger on Sunday, June 9, in the area of U.S. 171 and Hawthorne Road.

According to VPSO, the cause of Bond’s death has yet to be determined, but they do not see any signs of foul play.

https://www.kalb.com/content/news/Body-found-in-Vernon-Parish-identified-as-New-Llano-man-511548801.html

Is Your Inspection Sticker Not Sticking?

Workers at the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles are dealing with a pesky problem.

They’re fielding complaints from motorists who have state inspection stickers that won’t stay stuck.

Commissioner Karen St. Germain says the issue first started cropping up about two years ago.

The problem, she says, is that some inspection stations have older inventories and the glue on the back of their stickers does not work as well.

If you have an inspection sticker on your vehicle that has peeled back or peeled off altogether, St. Germain says you can go to any inspection station to have the sticker replaced at no charge.

However, the replacement sticker will still bear that same expiration date as the faulty sticker.

St. Germain says all inspection stations have been notified to turn in any stickers in their inventory that are more than two years old. She says those stations will receive replacement inventory at no charge.

“We don’t want to burden them (inspection stations) with something that wasn’t their fault,” she said.

“We’re changing our way of doing things to make sure OMV stations are not stuck replacing inspection stickers,” she said. “It’s called customer service. We can’t let the general public have to worry about this.”

https://www.ksla.com/2019/06/19/is-your-inspection-sticker-not-sticking/

Tens of Thousands Without Power from Latest Round of Storms

Another day in severe weather season means another day of assessing the damage and restoring power for SWEPCO customers.

Tens of thousands of ArkLaTex resident were left in the dark after a second night of violent storms pushed through.

RELATED ARTICLE – Another round of severe storms push through the ArkLaTex

Due to downed trees and power lines, just under 19,000 outages were being reported by SWEPCO at 8:15 a.m. Thursday across our region of Louisiana, Texas and Arkansas. Roughly 27,000 customer were out of power at the height of the storm.

Some of the larger outages:

Caddo Parish 3,700

Bossier Parish 3,000

Sabine Parish 2,725

Harrison County 2,288

Wood County 1,326

Crews are fanning out across the area, working diligently to get power restored.

When severe storms roll in, outages are likely. Click here to connect with SWEPCO and see a real-time map of outages in the area. You can also report an outage and get an update on when your power is likely to be restored.

https://www.ktbs.com/weather/headlines/tens-of-thousands-left-in-the-dark-in-latest-arklatex/article_9eee541a-933a-11e9-88ab-570af1ee1053.html

CPSO ARRESTS 3 FOR HUMAN TRAFFICKING  & 1 FOR CARNAL KNOWLEDGE

On March 21 Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office detectives were dispatched to a motel on North Martin Luther King Highway in Lake Charles in reference to a possible location of a 14 year old girl who had been reported as a runaway. When detectives arrived at the motel they located the girl in a room, along with Mariah C. Miller, 24, 216 S. Bowers Street, Iowa.

During the investigation and after interviewing the girl, detectives learned she has been a victim of sex trafficking since January 2019. The victim advised detectives she had been beaten and forced to have sexual intercourse with numerous men. During further investigation detectives learned Miller, along with an acquaintance of the victim, Kaleb A. Citizen, 21, 4254 5th Avenue, Lake Charles, and Darius P. Landry, 28, Lake Charles, who was the victim’s guardian and family member, were responsible for trafficking the girl. Detectives were also able to identify one of the men, Antonio D. Tompkins, 25, 1009 Live Oak Street, Lake Charles, with whom she was forced to have sex.

Between June 10 and 13 Judge Guy Bradberry signed warrants for the arrest of all four suspects. Miller, Citizen, and Tompkins; were all incarcerated at the Calcasieu Correctional Center on unrelated charges. Miller is charged with human trafficking with a bond of $250,000. Citizen is charged with human trafficking; 1st degree rape; and felony carnal knowledge of a juvenile with a bond of $2million. Tompkins is charged with felony carnal knowledge of a juvenile with a bond of $250,000. Landry was arrested on June 17 and booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center and charged with trafficking of juveniles for sexual purposes with a bond of $250,000.

The investigation is continuing and more arrests and charges are likely. Detectives also have reason to believe there may be more juvenile victims, so if anyone has any additional information on this case or these suspects, please call the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office at 491-3605.

CPSO Detectives Seth Abshire and Michael G. Miller are the lead investigators on this case.

 

Highway Worker Dies When Struck by 18-Wheeler in Road Work

A Louisiana highway worker died when he was struck by an 18-wheeler in Lincoln Parish.

It happened Tuesday morning on Louisiana Highway 563 just south of Interstate 20 at Simsboro, according to Louisiana State Police.

The initial investigation indicates a 2014 Freightliner truck was parked blocking the northbound lane of LA 563 to allow workers with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development to replace a road sign, said Master Trooper Michael Reichardt, of State Police Troop F.

LaDOTD employee Johnny Cole, 50, of West Monroe, was standing behind the Freightliner when a northbound 2019 International Harvester 18-wheeler approached the work area.

The International Harvester struck Cole then ran into the rear of the Freightliner.

Cole was pronounced dead at the scene by a representative of the Lincoln Parish coroner’s office.

Moore, who was not hurt, has been cited for careless operation of a motor vehicle.

  • Motorists should use caution and slow down when approaching highway work zones, troopers say.
  • Drivers also should be alert to and obey posted speed limits, warning signs and flagmen directions.
  • Motorists should also be sober, resist distractions and remain aware of their surroundings.
  • Above all else, troopers say, drivers should expect the unexpected because highway workers, work vehicles and equipment might enter your lane of travel or suddenly come to a stop.
Troop F has investigated 18 fatal crashes that have resulted in 23 deaths this year.

House Votes to Block Military Transgender Ban

The Democratic-controlled House voted Tuesday night to block President Donald Trump’s move to restrict transgender men and women from military service.

The House passed, by a 243-183 vote, an amendment to block Trump’s transgender ban from remaining in effect. The move still faces an uphill battle and a Trump veto threat against the underlying $1 trillion spending bill, which includes the military budget.

The Trump administration’s policy bars people who have undergone gender transition from enlisting. It also requires military personnel to serve as their biological gender unless they began a gender transition under less restrictive Obama administration rules. The policy is being challenged in court.

“With so much anger and so much hate in the world today, it is time to be kind to people,” said Rep. Peter Visclosky, D-Ind.

A GOP opponent, Rep. Ken Calvert of California, said the move “risks undermining the readiness of our military at a time when we can least afford it.”

But Rep. Anthony Brown, D-Md., said such arguments were used to justify segregation of the military.

“My service in an integrated armed forces did not harm readiness,” said Brown, who is African American.

Under the Obama administration, the Pentagon announced that transgender people already serving in the military would be allowed to serve openly. Trump reversed that policy beginning in 2017 with a tweet that the government would not allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the military.

An estimated 14,700 troops on active duty and in the reserves identify as transgender, but not all seek treatment. Since July 2016, more than 1,500 service members have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria; as of Feb. 1, there were 1,071 currently serving. The Pentagon says it has spent about $8 million on transgender care since 2016. The military’s annual health care budget tops $50 billion.

All four service chiefs told Congress last year that they had seen no discipline, morale or unit readiness problems with transgender troops serving openly in the military. But they also acknowledged that some commanders were spending a lot of time with transgender individuals who were working through medical requirements and other transition issues.

https://abc7.com/politics/house-votes-to-block-military-transgender-ban/5352944/

Texas DPS Ramping Up Move Over/Slow Down Enforcement

The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is continuing their enforcement efforts across the state focusing specifically on violations of the state’s Move Over/Slow Down law. These periodic enforcement operations by DPS Troopers are planned throughout the year at various locations in Texas, with several operations planned in June. One of those operations will take place in Beaumont District throughout the day on Wednesday, June 19. The Department of Transportation will be participating in a non-enforcement capacity.

The law, originally passed in 2003, requires motorists to move over or slow down when certain vehicles – including police, fire, EMS, Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks – are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated.

“Our Highway Patrol Troopers and other offices risk their lives every day for the people of Texas, and their safety is particularly vulnerable while working on the side of the road, where the slightest mistake by a passing motorist can end in tragedy,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “While our officers are serving and protecting Texans, we’re asking drivers to do their part by adhering to the law – simply move over or slow down.”

Specifically, Texas law states that a driver must either:

  • Vacate the lane closest to the applicable vehicles stopped on the side of the road (if the road has multiple lanes traveling in the same direction) or
  • Slow down to 20 mph below the speed limit. (If the speed limit is below 25 mph, the driver must slow down to 5 mph)

Drivers should only move over if they can do so safely and legally; otherwise, they should slow down.
“In light of the numerous vehicle crashes that occur in Texas and across the nation on a daily basis, and the unfortunate fact that many still violate the state law that has been in effect over 15 years, we are increasing our enforcement and education efforts related to this law,” said Director McCraw. “In addition to complying with the law to protect those who work on the side of the road, we encourage motorists to show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along the roadways. Let’s all get home safely.”

Violations of the law can result in a fine of up to $200; the fine increases to $500 if there is property damage. If violators cause bodily injury, they can be charged with a Class B misdemeanor, resulting in possible jail time and a maximum fine of $2,000.

Data from 2018 shows that DPS issued more than 41,000 warnings and citations to motorists violating the Move Over/Slow Down law. Preliminary data shows this year approximately 9,800 warnings and citations were issued for violating the law.

https://scttx.com/articles/dps-ramping-move-overslow-down-enforcement-5

Boil Advisory

The Ebarb Water System has issued a boil advisory that effects customers on Hwy 190 from Toledo Town to the water office, including the roads off 191, Teal Lake Subdivision, Brandon Estates, Alliance Loop, Diamond Point Road, Bray Road, Emmitt Meshell Road, Hwy 1215 to the first bridge, and all the roads off 1215. The boil ban is issued for your safety after the water is cut back on and the leak is fixed.