News for Thursday 032119
Compiled by Dave Graichen
The APD reports a shooting took place on Monroe Street shortly before 5 yesterday afternoon. Officers arrived and learned that a male subject had shot at another male in the parking lot of a business at the corner of Monroe and Kent Ave. A vehicle was hit during the shooting, but it appears no one was injured.. Both the shooter and the apparent victim fled the scene prior to the arrival of the police.
Earlier this month local media reported the arrest of 25 year old Mohammad Abudayeh, who was arrested by APD for attempted first-degree feticide and criminal conspiracy to commit feticide. Yesterday Investigators with Louisiana State Police announced new charges being brought Abudayeh involving SNAP benefits, or what most call food stamps. The charges, unauthorized SNAP benefits, computer fraud, money laundering, racketeering, and bank fraud. In June 2018, State Police began investigating the Food Mart in Alexandria on 3rd Street, concerning allegations of the owner buying SNAP benefits from local individuals. Investigators seized approximately $340,000 in U.S. currency and 11 cases of alcohol at his residence, that was discovered to be stolen from a local grocery store.
Four employees at the Louisiana Special Education Center in Alexandria who were under a police investigation are back at work. The state department of education says they were notified by the Rapides parish District Attorney’s office that allegations of serious infractions involving residents were unfounded. However, the DA’s office says the investigation is not totally over, since a Special Prosecutor is still looking at the case.
Today is the first full day of spring. What can we expect from the weather for the next few months? State Climatologist Barry Keim says we’re currently in a weak El Nino that will affect conditions this spring, bringing of rain to the state. Keim says the forecast for wet weather is welcomed news for farmers.
The LSU Board of Supervisors has approved an extension and pay raise for football coach Ed Orgeron. Athletics Director Joe Alleva appeared at yesterday’s meeting and said Orgeron is deserving of a 500-thousand dollar raise. Orgeron’s new contract runs through 2023 and his annual salary is four million dollars, the ninth highest in the SEC
Governor John Bel Edwards says he’s “not prepared” to echo calls from former Board of Regents Chairman Richard Lipsey for LSU President F. King Alexander and Athletic Director Joe Alleva to be fired for their handling of Will Wade and other sensitive topics.
Wade was suspended after refusing to talk to the administration about the reported FBI wiretap. One area the governor was prepared to definitively back the administration on was the decision to give football head coach Ed Orgeron a 500,000 dollar raise and a longer contract. Edwards says O is still one of the lowest paid coaches in the SEC, despite his success.
Flooding in the Midwest has many concerned about how those draining flood waters could impact the already very high Mississippi River levels. National Weather Service Slidell meteorologist Danielle Manning says those flood waters from the Missouri River basin do have to pass through the river on the way to the Gulf of Mexico. Manning says those flood waters shouldn’t be a threat.
The Associated Press reports Governor Edwards will ask lawmakers in the upcoming session to increase funding for higher education by 19-million dollars. About a third of that money would be for TOPS and the governor’s plan also calls for three-million dollars to help pay for resources for students who take classes online, such as electronic textbooks.
A Baton Rouge mother is facing charges that she allegedly drugged her 18-month-old baby to death. Authorities say 42-year-old Heather Hidalgo initially told police she had no involvement in her child’s February 15th death. Hidalgo was booked into jail after her child’s death on other warrants at the time, and Hicks says deputies continued their investigation until a toxicology report came back in early March with some disturbing results. Hicks says the report showed the child had a cocktail of different drugs in her system. Hidalgo allegedly told authorities it was to “comfort the child, and make the child comfortable.”
The St. Martin Parish Sheriff’s office says 37-year-old Tara Jackson of Broussard left her two small children in an unlocked vehicle for about an hour and half while she gambled at a video poker truck stop in St. Martinville. Major Ginny Higgins says the children are okay. Jackson has been charged with two counts of child desertion.
The Rosedown Plantation in St. Francisville is under fire for posting an exhibit sign that described the slaves who powered the plantation as “happy.” A state parks official says the sign has been removed and admits it was in poor taste. About 850 people were enslaved at Rosedown, and the site has become the most visited historic location in Louisiana, hosting close to 29,000 visitors last year.
According to research from staffing firm Robert Half, 72% of managers say college basketball playoff activities improve employee morale. New Orleans senior recruiting manager Carrie Lewis says when in moderation, there are definite potential benefits to group activities tied to sporting events. Lewis says 75% of companies will organize sports related festivities, 45% will host friendly competitions, and 43% will allow team apparel because of the benefits it can produce in the workplace.
Third seeded LSU looks to avoid the upset as it faces 14th seeded Yale at 11:40 this morning in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Hear the game on KSYL 970am / 104.9fm. Airtime 11am
LSUA will move on to round two of the NAIA division 1 Men’s basketball tournament after they defeated Central Baptist College yesterday afternoon 81 to 74. Friday the #2 ranked Generals will face Bethel University at 10:45 in the morning. Hear the game on 94.7 ESPN.
The New Orleans Pelicans are off until Sunday, that after they lost to the Orlando Magic last night 96 to 119. The Pels play the Mavericks Sunday evening.