News for Wednesday 061919
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Five Louisiana nursing homes are in hot water after a report by the Center for Medicaid and Medicare services shows poor conditions and subpar treatment of patients. Louisiana Department of Health spokesperson Bob Johannessen says it’s the first time the feds have made the annual report public, and its important information for families.
Here in Louisiana Tioga Community Care Center, St. Helena Parish Nursing Home, Lake Charles Care center, South Lafourche Nursing and Rehab, and Belle Maison Nursing Home in Hammond were on the list. The list identified over 400 problem facilities nationwide.
After an investigation that lasted several months, Two women were arrested at the Queen Spa on Mac Arthur Drive in Alexandria. The charges range from prostitution and money laundering to pandering. Alexandria and Pineville PD and the US Marshal’s Task Force were involved in the investigation.
Louisiana continues to be ranked 49th in overall child well-being. KIDS COUNT manager at Agenda for Children Teresa Falgoust says one of the main reasons the state does so poorly is the face the state ranks 50th in childhood poverty, with 307-thousand children living in poverty, roughly 28% of the state’s child population. The state has dropped in ranking for education from 47th to 48th. Falgoust says another troubling trend is the number of children getting ready to enter high school not doing well in math. In 2009, 80% of eighth graders were not proficient in math. That number increased to 81% in 2017.
Governor John Bel Edwards has signed the 30-billion dollar budget that lawmakers approved in the recently completed legislative session. Edwards says the spending plan that goes into effect July 1st contains the first teacher pay raise in a decade. The budget also increases funding for pre-K education.
Calcasieu Parish authorities report a Westlake pastor stands accused of raping an 11-year-old girl multiple times over a two-year period. 45 year old John Michael Ward was arrested Monday on 10 counts of first-degree rape, 40 counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile, and two counts of pornography involving a juvenile.
Four people are behind bars, with three charged with human trafficking and the fourth being charged with carnal knowledge after an investigation by the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office. The investigation began in March when a tip was called into authorities alerting them to the location of 14 year old girl previously reported as a runaway. Upon arrival at a motel, the girl was located in a room along with one of the suspects. The victim says she had been forced into sex trafficking since January.
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is asking for the public to help count how many bats live in the Bayou State, so they can find out if a bat-based disease is spreading. LDWF State Wildlife Veterinarian Jim LaCour says over 80 percent of the state is private property, which can make it tough to track bat populations, so if you got some bats on your land, they ask you contact their office. LaCour says the white nose syndrome has ravaged bat populations in other states, but has not yet been detected in Louisiana.
From the “Not the sharpest knife in the draw” department, a Haughton man was arrested after allegedly stealing items from his neighbor’s garage, including a live streaming surveillance camera he didn’t turn off. Bossier Sheriff’s Lt. Bill Davis says the footage made it easy to catch the thief, and the incident is a good example of how effective a simple surveillance camera can be.
The Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control is accepting permit applications from retailers who want to sell C-B-D products. A-T-C Commissioner Juana Lombard says C-B-D can only be added to food if approved by the F-D-A and C-B-D can’t be marketed as a dietary supplement and the labeling cannot make medical claims.
ESPN reports the Saints are ready to make wide receiver Michael Thomas the highest paid receiver in the NFL and a deal could be done before the start of training camp. The 26-year-old out of Ohio State has become one of the best receivers in the league and last year led the NFL with 125 catches for 1,405 yards and nine touchdowns.
The Pelicans have committed to Alvin Gentry as their head coach for the next two seasons by picking up his option for the 2020-21 season. New Pelicans Executive Vice President David Griffen has been a big supporter of Gentry’s and the two worked together previously in Phoenix.
A big question heading into Thursday night’s NBA draft is whether the Pels will trade the number four pick that they acquired from the Los Angeles Lakers. ESPN’s Jonahtan Givony says the Celtics, Bulls and Timberwolves have expressed interest in the number four pick so they can select Vanderbilt point guard Darius Garland.
LSU Hall of Famer Ebert Van Buren has passed away at the age of 94 at the Northeast Louisiana War Veterans home in Monroe. Van Buren never played high school football, but former coach Bernie Moore saw him play on the Metairie playgrounds and made him a fullback and linebacker. Van Buren helped LSU land a berth in the 1949 Sugar bowl. His brother is the late Steve Van Buren, who is a member of both the LSU and NFL Halls of Fame.