Tuesday, August 06, 2013
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has declared a state of emergency around the site of a derailed train that leaked a caustic chemical. The Union Pacific train derailed Sunday afternoon near Lawtell, forcing the evacuation of about 100 homes. Company spokeswoman Raquel Espinoza said three railcars were leaking but have been plugged. A man who was near the derailment is being treated for a burning sensation in his eyes.
THE REPLACEMENT OF THE MILLER AVENUE BRIDGE IN WESTLAKE HAS BEEN COMPLETED AND WAS OPENED TO TRAFFIC YESTERDAY. WORK BEGAN ON THE BRIDGE LAST NOVEMBER, FORCING MOTORISTS TO USE SAMPSON STREET AS A DETOUR. CALCASIEU PARISH POLICE JUROR HAL MCMILLAN SAYS THE BRIDGE WAS IN SUCH BAD SHAPE THAT IT HAD TO BE REPLACED RATHER THAN REPAIRED OR IT WAS GOING TO BE SHUT DOWN. PARISH ENGINEER TIM CONNOR SAYS THE ONE-POINT-5 MILLION DOLLAR COST FOR THE PROJECT WAS FUNDED BY THE FEDERAL OFF SYSTEM BRIDGE PROGRAM.
A LAFAYETTE POLICE OFFICER, WHO SHOT A MAN WHO WAS BELIEVED TO HAVE ROBBED THREE BANKS, WAS PUT ON PAID ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE UNTIL AN INVESTIGATION OF THE INCIDENT IS COMPLETED. THE MAN WHO WAS SHOT, 28-YEAR-OLD JEROME TURNER OF SCOTT, WAS IN AN INTENSIVE CARE UNIT AT A LOCAL HOSPITAL AS OF LAST NIGHT. SUNDAY NIGHT, THE POLICE OFFICER SPOTTED A VEHICLE THAT MATCHED THE DESCRIPTION OF ONE USED IN THE THREE BANK ROBBERIES. THE DRIVER OF THE VEHICLE ALLEGEDLY CONFRONTED THE OFFICER IN A CONVENIENCE STORE, LOCATED AT THE CORNER OF UNIVERSITY AND PONT DES MOUTON. THAT LED TO THE SHOOTING.
BP says it has uncovered new allegations of fraud and conflicts of interest inside the settlement program that has awarded billions of dollars to Gulf Coast businesses and residents following the company's 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In a federal court filing Monday, BP renewed its request for a judge to temporarily suspend settlement payments while former FBI Director Louis Freeh leads an independent investigation of the court-supervised settlement program. BP says at least two lawyers who have ruled on appeals of disputed settlement awards were partners at law firms that have represented claimants. BP also says it recently learned of allegations that someone employed by the settlement program in Mobile, Ala., helped claimants submit fraudulent claims in exchange for a portion of the awards.
FIFTEENTH JUDICIAL JUDGE EDWARD RUBIN HAS GRANTED A REQUEST FOR A SENTENCE CLARIFICATION HEARING ON MONDAY IN THE CASE OF TYSON DUPUIS OF CROWLEY, WHO WAS RECENTLY CONVICTED OF VEHICULAR HOMOCIDE. DUPUIS WAS DRIVING DRUNK WHEN HE STRUCK AND KILLED 18-YEAR-OLD MITCHELL ROMERO OF CROWLEY TWO YEARS AGO. DUPUIS COULD HAVE RECEIVED A SENTENCE OF UP TO THIRTY YEARS IN PRISON, BUT INSTEAD RECEIVED A TEN YEAR SENTENCE WITH HALF OF THAT TIME SUSPENDED. THE MOTHER OF MITCHELL, PAULA ROMERO, TOLD THE CROWLEY POST SIGNAL THAT THEY HOPE THE JUDGE WILL REMOVE THE SUSPENDED PART OF THE SENTENCE SO THAT DUPUIS WOULD HAVE TO SERVE THOSE FIVE YEARS IN JAIL.
THREE OF THE SIX MEN, WHO ARE ACCUSED OF TAKING PART IN A SHOOTOUT WHILE DRIVING ALONG GERSTNER MEMORIAL IN LAKE CHARLES LAST OCTOBER, WERE ARRAIGNED YESTERDAY. 19-YEAR-OLD JAMES ANTHONY BELLARD, 22-YEAR-OLD JARVIS KEAGAN AUBREY COLLINS, AND 19-YEAR-OLD LUCIOUS MALVEAUX EACH PLED NOT GUILTY TO A CHARGE OF ILLEGALLY FIRING A WEAPON FROM A VEHICLE. IT IS BELIEVED THAT THE SHOOTOUT BEGAN OVER A STOLEN ITEM. POLICE CHIEF DON DIXON SAYS NO ONE WAS HURT BUT A HOME ON GENERAL PATTON STREET WAS HIT ABOUT 20 TIMES AND A BULLET ALSO HIT AN APARTMENT COMPLEX ON FIFTH AVENUE.
STUDENTS WHO ATTEND ALICE BOUCHER AND J-W FAULK ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS CAN NOW TRANSFER TO OTHER ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS IN THE LAFAYETTE SCHOOL DISTRICT. JULIE DARCY EXPLAINS.
State Superintendent of Education John White says he'll unveil his proposals for reworking Louisiana's public high school diploma system in September. White says a diploma should signal whether students are ready to enter college or to work in a specific industry. His focus Monday to the Press Club of Baton Rouge was on readying students who aren't going to a four-year college. The superintendent says the career-readiness diploma pathways available to students should be decided regionally, in coordination with community and technical colleges.