News for Wednesday 081215
By Dave Graichen
The Alexandria City Council announced the 2015 millage rates for the city yesterday. The total millage of the three ad valorem taxes was set at 24.18, which is up slightly from last year's total of 24.08. The rates apply to the assessed value of property subject to ad valorem taxation within the city. In the case of city taxes, homestead exemption does not apply.
State Police say a 1-year-old, who was riding in the lap of a front seat passenger, was ejected from the vehicle and died from her injuries in a crash that took place in Morehouse Parish on Monday afternoon. Authorities say 23-year-old Shatora Hall of Bastrop was driving and there were five other people in the car at the time. Hall has been charged with reckless operation and a no child restraint violation.
A Lecompte man will serve 25 years in prison at hard labor after pleading no contest Monday to a lesser charge of forcible rape. 56 year old Kenneth Benoit had been facing five counts of aggravated rape, two counts of forcible rape, two counts of aggravated incest, second-degree battery and second-degree cruelty to a juvenile. After Benoit agreed to the deal, one of the aggravated rape charges was reduced to forcible rape and the remaining charges were dropped by the prosecution.
Slidell Police are calling it a miracle that a 50-year-old motorcyclist survived a crash with an 18-wheeler. Police believe the driver of the semi was intoxicated and literally ran over the motorcycle which stopped, waiting to make a turn. The bike was dragged underneath the truck and the victim tossed off his motorcycle. That’s what saved his life. The truck driver was arrested and faces several charges.
A Lafayette man has been sentenced to ten years in prison by a US District Judge for claiming there was a bomb on the campus of UL-Lafayette a year ago. Thirty-one year old Devin Haywood called in the threats in order to rob a bank. The campus was totally evacuated including all classes for over 5 thousand students.
The State Fire Marshall reports a 52-year-old DeRidder man died early Tuesday in a fire at his home. The body of Paul Ashworth was found on his bedroom floor next to his bed. Investigators were informed by family members of the victim that Ashworth was a heavy smoker who habitually smoked while in bed.
Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley is reminding women about the importance of learning how to safely handle a weapon if you feel your life is in danger. The message comes on the heels of the death of a woman in Geismar who was beaten to death with a baseball bat allegedly by her estranged husband. The victim had a restraining order against the man. Wiley added the reminder sounds extreme but extreme violence requires extra protection efforts.
Baton Rouge Police say the father of a months old infant who died Saturday from blunt force trauma is booked on a count of murder. Detectives updated the count against 28-year-old John Hope from second degree cruelty to a juvenile to first degree murder in the death of his daughter. East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner ruled the baby’s death a homicide.
A state panel continues to look at the cost of the death penalty in Louisiana. New Orleans Senator JP Morrell says the purpose of the Capital Punishment Fiscal Impact Commission is to determine whether the public believes that enforcing the death penalty is worth the cost. Morrell says some say it could cost tens of millions of dollars to execute a single person, especially when you factor in the cost of the numerous appeals that are associated with the process. He says the commission report is due to the legislature during the next legislative session.
Southerners are in luck, a new study claims eating spicy foods can add more time to your life. The study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health and the Chinese Academy of Medical Science found people consuming spicy foods six to seven times a week lived longer than those eating spicy foods just once a week.
According to the United Way of Acadiana, about $250,000 has been raised for the 11 victims of last month’s Lafayette theater shooting. President and CEO Margaret Trahan says most of the money was raised by businesses and retailers who have sold t-shirts, yard signs and jewelry.
A 54-year-old man from East Feliciana Parish charged with a hate crime, now faces a felony cruelty charge for allegedly pulling at the pants of a 12-year-old boy and using a racial slur. The incident was caught on video inside a gas station last month. According to authorities, the victim’s pants were sagging.
The Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control announce that they issued over 800 citations to Louisiana establishments for selling alcohol and tobacco to minors as a result of their 2015 Summer Crackdown operation. ATC Commissioner Troy Hebert says nearly 5,500 compliance checks resulted in 821 citations statewide. Of the citations issued, 460 were issued for alcohol sales to a minor and 361 for tobacco sales.
No practice today for the Saints. That’s because they are getting ready for tomorrow night’s preaseason game at Baltimore. It’s the first of four exhibition games and Coach Sean Payton is glad they have four preseason games before it starts for real