News for Wednesday 101415
By Dave Graichen
US Attorney Stephanie Finley announced Tuesday that the former Mamou Police Chief has been sentenced to one year and one day in prison and another former Mamou Police Chief and a former officer pleaded guilty for their roles in a series of incidents where they tazed inmates who were not resisting. The pleas and Gregory Dupis sentence are the result of a federal investigation into the illegal use of excessive force upon inmates at the jail.
Early voting began Saturday for the October 24th primary, and with booths closed Sunday, Secretary of State Tom Schedler says as of the close of business on Monday just over 60-thousand ballots were cast, with more women have voted than men. Still, He predicts overall turnout for the election will be below 50-percent.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has approved the adoption of scoring levels which align with other states on the Common Core testing. Cut Scores determine a student’s skill level on the test as mastery, advanced, basic, approaching basic or unsatisfactory. State Superintendent of Education John White says cut scores allow them to release reports to schools and parents after announcing Monday Common Core test results that show just 22-40 percent of Louisiana students have “mastered” a certain skill they say is needed to move on to the next level.
Louisiana ranks number 47th in the country for financial wellbeing according to a report by Gallup-Healthways. The report also found Louisiana comes in at number 48th in the nation for residents having enough money for food and 49th for the ability for people to pay for health care.
The Red Cross of Louisiana announces fans donated more than $40,000 for South Carolina relief efforts at the LSU game this past Saturday at Tiger Stadium. They say Tiger fans welcomed the displaced Gamecocks to Baton Rouge with open arms and were ready with their wallets, checks and stories to share. The Red Cross says the money in the donation canisters outside of the stadium will provide badly needed supplies to South Carolina residents recovering from flooding.
Members of Governor Bobby Jindal’s presidential campaign are looking to change the current debate criteria so Jindal will be included in the next Republican presidential debate on October 28th. The campaign argues that basing criteria on national polls is meaningless at this point in the race. Current Republican National Committee criteria requires a candidate average at least 2.5-percent in six different national polls to make a debate. Jindal Pollster Wes Anderson says the governor’s recent surge to six-percent support in Iowa should put him in the main debate.
According to the Associated Press, the cost of Governor Bobby Jindal’s security detail has more than doubled to over $3.1 million a year since he took office in 2008. State Police says the price increase for protective services for the governor isn’t chiefly driven by Jindal’s frequent travel. They say a sizable pay raise for state troopers accounted for much of an $830,000 increase in salary and benefits for the protective detail over the last year alone.
Republican David Vitter released a new statewide television ad today which features his wife Wendy talking about why her husband would be the best choice for governor of Louisiana. In the commercial, Wendy Vitter says she knows David Vitter better than anyone and he has the courage to stand up to Baton Rouge politicians.
The Baton Rouge Police Department arrests a 17-year-old on charges of negligent homicide for allegedly shooting and killing his 15-year-old best friend by mistake. They say cops responded to a report of a shooting around 3:30 am and learned that Kevin Aguillard and the victim were playing with a gun when it discharged. 15-year-old Brian Banks was struck in the face and died at a local hospital.
The Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office says a year-long undercover drug operation nets 54 suspected criminals, and 8 suspects remaining at large. They say “Operation Who’s Next” is one of the largest undercover operations in the history of the department. Sheriff Lonnie Greco says they were able to seize massive amounts of heroin, prescription drugs, crack cocaine, meth and much more.
The state Department of Health and Hospital announces a new online platform is now available to Louisiana residents with information about how to use health information. DHH Secretary Kathy Kliebert says makemyhealth-dot-me shows people how to request copies of their medical records and then how to use them. The campaign is called “Your Health in Your Hands.”
The Humane Society is asking for donations to help take care of the more than 40 animals who were living in filthy conditions at a home in Washington Parish. A mother and daughter face numerous counts of animal cruelty charges. All of the animals, 20 dogs, 20 cats a duck and a rabbit, are in dire need of veterinary care.