News for Thursday 010814
By Dave Graichen
We’re seeing temperatures in the teens for the northern half of the state and it’s not much warmer along the coast. State Climatologist Barry Keim says be prepared for what will be a cold day. It was unusually cold in Louisiana last January and Keim says we are experiencing another polar vortex. Keim says not only is the air temperature colder than normal, but we are also seeing some bone chilling wind chill readings as well.
The Natchitoches Parish Sheriff's Office is seeking a Montgomery man wanted on warrants for home invasion and armed robbery. Two other suspects already are in custody, but officials still are searching for 27 year old Joshua Blake Coburn of Montgomery. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact authorities.
APD Detectives have arrested 51 year old Jerrell Fontenot after an investigation into two robberies at the south Macarthur Dr. Pizza Hut. The robberies occurred in October and in December. Fontenot was booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center, charged with armed robbery and attempted first-degree robbery.
Alexandria police have arrested 22-year-old Tavis Thomas, on a warrant issued by the Alexandria Fire Department. An AFD spokesman said Thomas became a suspect in a Dec. 26 fire set at a house that was occupied by two children and an adult. The adult at the house was able to put the fire out, and there were no injuries.
On the first day of qualifying, Two former Alexandria mayoral candidates tossed their hats in the ring for the vacant House District 26 seat. Jeff Hall and Alice Hammond, both democrats from Alexandria, qualified Wednesday for the special election, which will be the only election in Rapides Parish on Feb. 21. Wednesday was the opening day of qualifying, which continues from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. today and Friday at the Rapides Parish Clerk of Court’s Office.
According to media reports, the New Orleans Saints are reportedly going to keep Defensive Coordinator Rob Ryan for next season. NFL Analyst Mike Detillier says the defensive weakness of the Saints are more about the players than the coaches, so he says the Saints have some work to do in the off-season. The New Orleans Saints ranked 31st in the league for yards allowed.
A Thibodaux High School teacher has been charged for having sexual contact with a student. The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office says they learned of the alleged sexual incident between twenty-five year-old Celeste Bergeron and a 17 year-old student. Bergeron admitted to the sexual contact, and the Lafourche Parish School Board Superintendent Jo Ann Mathews says Bergeron is no longer employed by the school system.
An Abbeville High School teacher is in jail accused of having sex with one of his female juvenile students. Thirty-six-year-old Nicholas Willis is accused of engaging in sexual relations with the juvenile which is a felony.
The Monroe Police Department says they’ve recovered the body of a 38-year-old man from Rayville in a private pond. They say Clarence Dean Roy Jr. was reported missing after he left a construction site in western Ouachita Parish and was located Tuesday afternoon in the water near the work site. Foul play is not suspected. Cops believe Roy had a medical issue.
Police in Baton Rouge say a 12-year-old boy is in critical condition after a car swerved off the road and hit him while he was walking to school Wednesday morning. They believe it was a mechanical program with the vehicle which caused the driver to lose control and hit the boy walking along a nearby sidewalk. Cops say the driver isn’t cited and the crash is under investigation.
The State Department of Transportation announces a plan to widen a portion of I-10 between Lafayette and St. Martin Parishes. The DOTD says construction will take place where I-10 meets I-49 all the way to Breaux Bridge and will take two years to complete. This is the first of three projects that will widen or improve I-10 from Lafayette to the Atchafalaya Basin.
Festivities begin today to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans. As part of the War of 1812, the battle culminated in a US victory over the British in Chalmette on January 8, 1815. Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne says this was one of the most important battles fought on American soil. Dardenne says this victory enabled America to continue to expand westward and cemented Louisiana’s role as part of the United States. He says special events will last throughout the weekend.
If you’d like to try to save money on your homeowners and auto insurance, the Department of Insurance has enhanced its online tool to help consumers find a better rate. Commissioner Jim Donelon says you can enter specific information about you into the new website like your age, or how many miles you drive and other things that set rates for insurance. Donelon says among the features of the new website are streamlined online services and a responsive design that makes it compatible with mobile devices. The “Shop Your Rates” guides can be accessed at ldi.la.gov.
The LSU men’s basketball team begins conference play tonight as they visit the Missouri Tigers in a game that will tip-off at 6 P-M. The Bayou Bengals enter league play with an 11-and-2 record and eight-game winning streak. You can hear that game tonight on 970 KSYL.