News for Wednesday 050819
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Von Jennings has resigned as the city of Alexandria's director of community services following a social media controversy over the weekend. A screenshot of a Facebook post attributed to Jennings began circulating last weekend. In it, she appears to call someone racist and uses an expletive in response to a meme and a bad review of the Alexandria Red River Festival. The city issued a release Tuesday afternoon announcing the resignation and went on to say the offensive post in no way represents the views of the city administration.
It didn’t take long. The man suspected of robbing the Capitol One Bank location on Jackson Street yesterday, shortly before noon, was arrested at a Mac Arthur Drive Motel less than 2 hours after the robbery. Authorities were able to talk Joshua Perry out of the room without incident, inside police reported finding evidence from the robbery.
The trial for a Pineville woman, accused with her brother in the deaths of three people, has been pushed back to March of next year. Ebony Nicole Sonnier's has been indicted on two counts of first-degree murder, one count of second-degree murder and two counts of criminal conspiracy. The Rapides Parish District Attorney's Office has filed notice that it intends to seek the death penalty for Sonnier, who is 32. She and her brother, 30-year-old Matthew Sonnier, are accused in the deaths of Jeremy Norris, Kendrick Horn and Latisha White. The three died in October of 2017.
Here in CenLA, Law enforcement officials believe there are women out there who were held captive by a man identified as 56-year-old Justin Walters of Colfax. Grant Parish Sheriff Steven McCain says Walters is behind bars, accused of physically restraining three women, beating them for days and raping at least one of the victims. McCain says the suspect used social media to start a relationship with his victims. Anyone with information should call the GPSO.
One day after the Senate rejected legislation to abolish the death penalty; the House Governmental Affairs Committee approved a bill that would allow the state to keep it a secret on where they purchase lethal drugs to carry out an execution. Louisiana has not carried out an execution since 2010 and a major stumbling block is the state’s inability to acquire the drugs needed to perform a lethal injection, because pharmaceutical companies do not want to be associated with it. It passed on an 8-2 vote. It now faces more discussion on the House floor. It’s also been approved by House Criminal Justice.
A House committee advances legislation that would move regulatory power of the state’s medical marijuana program out of the Ag Department and into the Department of Health. Making the product available to the public has faced repeated delays and grower GB Sciences President John Davis is tired of the wait. GB Sciences is partnered with the LSU AgCenter to grow part of the state’s medical marijuana crop. Strain defended his department against accusations they have been responsible for the frequent delays.
A Council for a Strong America report says the state needs to do more in making sure parents are able to find child care. CEO of the Committee of 100 Michael Olivier says the infant and child care crisis is costing the state $1.1 billion each year and that’s lost earnings and productivity. 5,000 kids are currently on a state waiting list for funding to pay for child care education.
Last week it was the Vice President, next week, Tuesday to be exact; President Trump is scheduled to visit the state to highlight job growth in the energy sector. The President will visit a 10 billion dollar liquefied natural gas export facility in Cameron Parish.
A bill that would up the amount of time a minor has to work before getting a break from five hours to eight hours has stalled in the House after a heated argument on the lower chamber floor. Baton Rouge Representative Denise Marcelle says the legislation would endanger teen’s education, and it’s unfair to push them to work seven and a half hours straight while paying them 7.25 an hour. Bill writer, Bossier City Representative Raymond Crews countered saying teenagers have not proven their worth yet.
Governor Edwards has deemed May as Motorcycle Safety and Awareness Month. With the weather more favorable for hitting the road on two wheels, State Police Sgt. Jared Sandifer says motorcycles are more present on the roadways, and LSP is offering a refresher course for riders. So far in 2019, 20 people have died and nearly 300 have been injured in motorcycle accidents on state’s roads.
The LSU men’s basketball program is planning to visit Spain in August. The NCAA allows schools to take one foreign trip every four years and LSU’s last out of country trip was in 2015 to Australia.
New LSU athletics director Scott Woodward appeared on 94.7 ESPN’s After Further Review with Matt Mascona yesterday and was asked about basketball coach Will Wade. Woodward says Wade has their support and backing and it will be that way until it’s not. He added that they hope Wade is LSU’s coach for a long time, but things change and minds change.
Preliminary estimates show the devastating EF-3 tornado that ripped through Ruston likely destroyed Louisiana Tech’s softball, baseball, and soccer fields. Athletic Director Tommy McClelland says the estimates aren’t final, but they do not expect at this time that the facilities are useable. Two people were killed in the deadly incident last month.
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Wednesday May 8th
Houston Astros vs Kansas City 6:35p 94.7 ESPN