Jawaski Beverly, 23 of Cotton Street – arrested for Theft of Goods and currently incarcerated with a $500.00 bond;
Tylan Roberts, 20 of 220 Roderick – arrested for Theft of Goods and currently incarcerated with a $500.00 bond;
Templeton Guillory of ED Alfred – arrested for Theft of Goods and currently incarcerated with a $500.00 bond;
Emanuel Malbrew, 47 of Austin Road – arrested for Disturbing the Peace and out on a $200.00 bond; and
Ashley Henry, 25 of W. Magnolia – arrested for No Insurance, Driving Under Suspension, Expired Motor Vehicle Inspection, running a stop sign and currently incarcerated with an $1,100 bond.
It’s summertime and that means children need to be kept busy and what better to keep them entertained with than activities and special performances at the Evangeline Parish Libraries. As part of the Summer Reading Program, children and adults have been treated to performances by Storyteller and Actress, Daphne Thomas, Magician Mitch Richard, “Fun with Spanish” with Thelma Fontenot and this week “Geebo the Clown and Magician”.
The room was packed as Geebo performed and interacted with children at the main branch of the library today. Many children from the Ville Platte Boys and Girls Club were in attendance.
Originally from Lake Charles, Gregory Guillory began performing as “Geebo The Clown aka “El Payaso Loco” as a seasoned bilingual clown, juggler, face-painter, balloon sculpture and magician in Los Angeles, California in 1988. He has also performed in other parts of the country. He performed for Evangeline Parish in 2015 and was invited back. The children are very interactive with his performances.
Geebo was perform Wednesday morning at Pine Prairie branch of the library at 10:00 a.m. and at the Mamou branch at 2:00 p.m. On Thursday he will wrap up the week’s performances at the Basile branch at 10:00 a.m. and the Chataignier branch at 3:00 p.m.
VILLE PLATTE ROTARY CLUB
JUNE 27, 2017
The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from their guest speaker, new U.L.-Lafayette Athletic Director, Dr. Bryan Maggert. Maggert brought several members of his staff with him at the meeting. Ville Platte was the ninth and final stop in visiting every parish in the Acadiana region to help promote U.L. athletics. “Our goal is to make U.L. Acadiana’s university, “ he said.
Maggert served in the athletic program for 22 years in the University of Missouri He is married and he and his wife are the parents of three children. He said he is proud to report that U.L. leads the state in student athlete graduation rate and in the Sun Belt conference.
He urged club members to attend U.L. sporting events. U.L. has just completed spending 117 million dollars on a new baseball facility. The next project is to upgrade and enlarge the football stadium. He said he loves the culture of Lafayette especially the food.
Among the members accompanying Maggert was long time U.L. Play by Play announcer Jay Walker.
Maggert was presented a special gift basket by Hilda Edwards on behalf of Ville Platte Mayor Jennifer Vidrine who could not attend.
Maggert was a special guest of Rotarian Dr. Joey Soileau.
On June 23, 2017 at approximately 10:30 p.m. Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a report of a stolen vehicle on Jean Vidrine Road. The silver Ford Expedition was located the next morning outside of the city limits and the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Officer notified the Ville Platte Police Department Detective assigned to the case. The vehicle had been abandoned in a field off of St. john Road. This matter is still under investigation.
Chief Lartigue asks residents to call if they have any information regarding the persons involved with the stolen Expedition. To report this any information or any type of illegal activity, you can call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
According to Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue, on June 19, 2017 Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a disturbance call on West Oak Street. Upon arrival Officer learned that a father and son had an argument which led to the father striking his son in the head with a hammer. As the son stumbled and tried to stop his fall, his hand and arm went through a window of the home causing cuts and bruising. He was transported to Mercy Regional and treated for his cuts and bruises on his arm and hand and was also treated for a concussion and bleeding on his head.
Joseph Shawn Fontenot, 44 of 105 West Oak Street, Ville Platte was arrested and charged with aggravated battery. Fontenot was booked into the Ville Platte City Jail on a $35,000.00 and was transported to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Jail.
Ville Platte Police Chief, Neal Lartigue reports a recent pursuit with one arrest.
On June 21, 2017 at approximately 11:00 p.m. an Officer with the Ville Platte Police Department observed a vehicle traveling west in the east bound lane of West Main Street. As the Officer attempted to make a traffic stop, the vehicle accelerated speed and a short pursuit began. The vehicle described as a grey Jeep turned onto HWY 167 and traveled a short distance before coliding with a set of mailboxes. The driver exited the vehicle and fled and was captured after a short foot pursuit.
Cedrick Gallow 33, of 114 S. Soileau Street, Ville Platte, was arrested and charged with reckless operation of a motor vehicle, aggravated flight from an officer, improper lane usage, improper display of license plate, no driver’s license, failure to have proper paperwork in vehicle, and no insurance. Gallow was booked into the Ville Platte City Jail and was transferred to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office jail on a $17,740.00 bond.
Chief Neal Lartigue reminds residents to support suspicious and illegal activity by calling the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Funeral services for Cajun musician, Belton Richard will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Monday, June 26, 2017 at St. Elizabeth Church in Carencro with burial to follow in the Greenview Memorial Cemetery. Visitation will take place Saturday from 11:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. and on Sunday from 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. at Melancon Funeral Home in Carencro.
KVPI News has been briefed by Evangeline Parish Director of 911 and the Office of Emergency Preparedness about Tropical Storm Cindy. The storm has now been downgraded and the warnings we were under have been lifted. Here is what you can expect as far as rain potential over the next few days:
FRIDAY – 30-60% chance of rain
SATURDAY – 60-70%
SUNDAY – 50-60%
MONDAY – 30-50%
TUESDAY – 20-30%
WEDNESDAY – 20-40%
Stay tuned to Classic Hits 92.5 for weather updates and any weather events that may arise.
Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce members heard from Rae Gremillion with Volunteers of America during their monthly meeting Wednesday. She explained how Volunteers of America is helping communities in 15 parishes in Louisiana by providing resources to Type 3 Childcare Centers like Kids World in Ville Platte. A Type 3 childcare center is one that is able to accept state and federal funds to assist poverty stricken families with childcare. Volunteers of America focuses on providing the same curriculum, materials, resources and training that other childcare centers have in order to bridge the learning gap. They are dependent on donations from businesses to help be able to provide the materials.
She explained the School Readiness Tax Credit that many people do not know about. If you have a business and you contribute up to $5,000.00 to the America’s Partnership in Child Care program, the State will reimburse your business dollar-to-dollar for your donation. If your business owes taxes, the State will deduct the amount of your donation from amount that you owe. Even if your business does not owe state taxes or if your donation exceeds your tax bill, the State will reimburse you in the form of a refund. Gremillion said their organization has never been able to get help from Evangeline Parish and it only helps the Parish by putting those funds into the Type 3 childcare centers. Bridging the learning gap helps lower crime later in life as well as drop-out rates. Only 54% of children entering kindergarten are academically and developmentally ready to succeed. If your business would like to donate and receive the tax credit, please call 337-234-5715.
It was also announced that the new UL Athletic Director, Bryan Maggard, will be visiting Evangeline Parish on June 27th. Maggard replaced Scott Farmer and will be visiting the KVPI studios, Chamber of Commerce and other area businesses.
Mable Foreman announced the 9th year of the Evangeline Parish Coalition will hold its Health Fair at the Northside Civic Center on July 29th from 10:00 a.m. until they run out of supplies. Parents can come and bring their children to collect school supplies. They will also be provided with lunch.
The next Chamber meeting will be held on July 19, 2017 at Noon
According to Ville Platte Police Chief, Neal Lartigue, the following individuals have recently been arrested and booked into the City Jail:
John Poullard, 24 of MLK Drive – arrested for Simple Burglary and Theft. Bond was set at $20,000 by Judge Gary Ortego;
James Jones, of High School St. – arrested for 1 count of Domestic Abuse Battery, Felony and 2 counts of Domestic Abuse Battery. Jones was denied bond by Judge Gary Ortego;
Steven McKoy, 18 of East Wilson – arrested for transfer and possession of a stolen vehicle. Bond was set at $5,000.00 by Judge Gary Ortego;
Christopher Bellard, 48 of Blake Street – arrested for Simple Criminal Damage to Property. Bellard is currently incarcerated with a $1,400.00 bond;
Michael Brooks, 47 of N. Chataignier – arrested for Simple Battery and is currently incarcerated with a $1,000.00 bond;
Lillian Andrus, 51 of Kordish Lane – arrested for Disobeying a Traffic Light/No License/Expired License Plate and Open Container. Andrus is out on a $500.00 bond;
Jessie Vories, 44 of East Pine – arrested for Wreckless Driving and out on a $200.00 bond;
Davinski Doucet, 34 of East Long – arrested for Domestic Abuse and Driving Under Suspension and out on a $1,500.00 bond;
Warren Green, 46 of Tate Cove – arrested for Hit and Run and incarcerated with a $300.00 bond;
Bryan Weston, 18 of W. Long – arrested for Simple Battery and incarcerated with a $1,000.00 bond; and
Precious Thomas, 26 of N. Latour – arrested for Criminal Damage to Property and out on a $700.00 bond.
As of 10 am, Tropical Storm Cindy has weakened slightly, down to sustained winds of 50 mph. Landfall projections still show a Texas-Louisiana state line location, sometime after midnight tonight, as a weak tropical storm.
We are still expecting 3 to 5 inches of rain, with the possibility of 10 inches if a slow moving rain band moves across your area. For people along and south of the I-10 corridor, this rain could easily cause flooding of streets due to the poor drainage conditions with the tides running so high.
For the tides, the danger is increasing for communities near the coast. Tides are running about 1.5 feet above normal right now, and that could go as high as 3 feet above normal during the high tide late tonight. Vulnerable locations to this above normal tide include Sabine Pass and sections of Highway 87 north of them, low areas near Bridge City, Highway 82 west and east of Holly Beach, downtown Cameron, Pecan Island, Intracoastal City, Delcambre, Cypremort Point, and Burns Point.
Wind-wise, tropical storm force wind gusts will start this morning in south central Louisiana, and move into southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas this afternoon. Central Louisiana and east Texas will see the stronger winds more likely tonight. The entire region should see winds subsiding by midday on Thursday. Due to the wind gusts, expect to see scattered power outages and a few trees fall down.
There is a small tornado threat for southwest, central, and south central Louisiana today and during the day on Thursday as well.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club held its annual installation of officers and banquet Tuesday night at La Veille Banque.
Club members and their spouses and special guests were treated to a country band comprised of Chauncey Guillory and his son, Casey Guillory, Guy Pucheu, Chuck Manuel and Dustin Bailey. Chauncey is the son of the late Swamp Pop singer Clint West and Casey is Clint’s grand son.
Outgoing president Peter Strawitz introduced the members of the board and said he enjoyed his term in office. During the past year, membership remained steady, the club worked closely with the Sacred Heart Interact Club and the club took part in preparing meals at the Grand Hoorah festival and for Rylla students at the Mountain Bayou Boy Scout camp. The club continued providing scholarships to LSU-E and Coreil Campus and to encourage 8th grade public school students to stay in school through the “Choices” program.
Rotary District Official Linwood Broussard officiated in installing the following new slate of officers: President-Wayne Vidrine, President Elect-Richard LeJeune, Vice President Nicole Wenger, Secretary-Susan Saunders, Treasurer-Vic Slaven, Outgoing President Peter Strawitz and board members: Dr. Joey Soileau, Dr. Jerry Veillon, Annette Johnson, Peggy Tate and Larry Lachney.
President Wayne Vidrine announced that his priority will be to work for improvements at Chicot State Park. The park was first created with the assistance of the Ville Platte Rotary Club. Vidrine said he wants to make sure that the flooded out cabins at the park can be replaced so groups such as the Rylla students can use the local facilities.
Nicole Wenger and Darwan Lazard were named as Paul Harris Fellows after making major contributions to the Rotary International Foundation. Leonard Fontenot was honored as being a major donor to Rotary International.
Retiring club secretary Janice Helmer was named Rotarian of the Year. She served in that office for the past six years. Kim LeJeune was honored with a plaque from Larry Lachney for her work as instructor for the Sacred Heart Interact Club. Also, Peter Strawitz received a plaque for his service as president for the past year.
On Monday, June 19, 2017, Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a report of a disturbance at a local business on Tate Cove Rd. Upon arrival officers learned that one of the subjects involved in the disturbance fled the area in a vehicle that he did not have permission to use. A few minutes later the vehicle and subject were located and stopped on Main Street, by detectives and officers.
Emanuel Malbrew, 48 of 280 Austin Road, Ville Platte was arrested and charged with unauthorized use of a moveable. Malbrew was booked into the Ville Platte City Jail and transferred to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Jail on a $15,000.00 bond.
If you have any information regarding illegal activity in the community, you are asked to call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
KVPI News Director, Stephanie Ware, attended a Budget Meeting held at the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Thursday morning. In attendance was Sheriff, Eddie Soileau, Dirk Deville, Josh Fontenot and Mike Fontenot. The Sheriff was presented with the Amended Budget for 2016-2017. Amendments to the Original Budget included a significant amount of “back billing” that was never collected, including $483,000 for ‘State Inmate Holding”. With all of the Amendments to the Original Budget, the Amended Surplus adds up to $843,186.00 for 2016-2017. Soileau stated “I have never seen a number like that in nine years.” The Sheriff adopted the Budget then moved on to the proposed Budget for 2017-2018.
The Surplus for the projected year goes down significantly to $155,279.00. Deville and Josh Fontenot explained one of the reasons for that is because they will be spending more money to “meet the needs of the Parish, put more deputies on the roads and meet the needs of each department.” The Expenditures in the new Budget increase from $1,170,817 in 2016-2017 to $1,406,429.00 in 2017-2018 for Salaries and Payroll Taxes. Josh Fontenot stated that they are “cutting the Surplus but providing more for the Parish.”
The Sheriff stopped carrying liability insurance for deputies last year and as reflected in the new Budget, he will continue not to carry it due to the extremely high cost of doing so versus what insurance has ever paid out. When Stephanie asked why they will not carry the insurance, Deville stated that they had previously paid out close to half-a-million dollars for the premiums and insurance had only paid out approximately $18,000 so he said they will be self-funded like the Police Jury.
When Soileau reflected on the Surplus for next year only being $155,279, he stated “I don’t like that number, but we will have to live with it.” He then adopted the Budget for 2017-2018.
Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue is urging business owners to use caution when accepting cash for purchases. A local business had a customer make a purchase with counterfeit money Wednesday morning consisting of nine (9) counterfeit $50.00 bills and one (1) counterfeit $100.00 bill. The suspect got away but police are investigating and reviewing video footage. A similar occurrence took place in Breaux Bridge recently.
If you have anyone try to present any type of counterfeit payment at your business or if you know anyone who is trying to pass counterfeit money throughout the community, you are urged to contact the police department at 363-2124.
The Ville Platte City Council and Mayor, Jennifer Vidrine, held their monthly meeting Tuesday at Ville Platte City Hall.
During the meeting, Councilman Mike Perron questioned Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue as to the status of all of the recent vehicle burglaries. Chief reported that two different groups of juveniles have been traveling throughout Ville Platte, St. Landry Parish and Eunice burglarizing vehicles. KVPI News was told there were seven juveniles in a vehicle when Eunice Police came upon them. Two of the juveniles got away from Police and 5 were arrested. Two others were stopped by Shreveport Police in a stolen vehicle. One of those assailants got away and one adult is being held in Shreveport. Chief Neal Lartigue has a Warrant to bring him back to Evangeline Parish of numerous charges. We were told that the drivers of the vehicles were dropping the juveniles off to walk through neighborhoods and open unlocked vehicles in order to take items left in the vehicles.
Mayor, Jennifer Vidrine reminds the public that you are responsible and will be held accountable for the actions of your children. There is a curfew according to state law. No juveniles are allowed on the streets after 10:00 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on the weekends. She is encouraging the public to report any juveniles you see out after those times to the Ville Platte Police at 363-1313. Parents can and are being charged with ‘Improper Supervision of a Juvenile’ when they allow their children to roam the streets.
In other news: Mayor Vidrine is asking that the Police in Ville Platte start being tougher on those who are loitering outside of businesses. She said “Stop and arrest them. Don’t just nod your head and drive by.” She also stated: “The Exxon Station and The Shell Station are not night clubs. Stop loitering in the parking lots after the clubs close.” Chief Lartigue said his officers have been working very hard and reported there were fifty-seven (57) arrests in Ville Platte last month. He said “for a town of this size, that’s a lot!”
Dana Quebedeaux presented the Amended 2016-2017 Budget to the Council and reported a $269,618 surplus for the City; however, also reported that the Police Department overspent by $480,408.00. She explained that much of those expenses were for medical expenses for inmates in the City Jail. She also reported that the insurance rates for next year have tripled. The Mayor and Chief stated that was due to accidents, lawsuits, etc.
City of Ville Platte Employees will be receiving a 3% pay raise effective on the June 29th payroll;
Nancy Duplechain has been named the new Swamp Pop Museum Curator filling the position of Janie Knighton who has retired;
The Mayor presented a check to Fire Chief Chris Harrison in the amount of $39,249.48 for the Fire Insurance 2% Rebate;
The July City Council meeting will be held on July 18th as the new fiscal year begins; and
Expenditures for the month of May were down by $13,496.14.
VILLE PLATTE ROTARY CLUB MEETING
JUNE 13, 2017
Evangeline Parish County Agent Todd Fontenot was the guest speaker at today’s meeting of the Ville Platte Rotary Club.
Fontenot said farmers are facing problems with excessive moisture in their fields. “It has been a wet year” he said.
The rice crop was affected because of the early rainfall and again the flooding rains in April and May. He estimates Evangeline Parish rice producers have lost about 1000 acres of rice. Some of the rice crop was under water for as long as 12 days. The crop can take up to 8 days of being under water. The excessive moisture has impacted the rice yields. It is also causing problems with rice diseases.
Some of the soybean crop had to be replanted due to the excessive rains this year. As far as crawfish production, it was a mixed year. Some crawfish producers had a good year. The prices fluctuated and were good through Easter week.
Fontenot also reported that the 4-H program is busy during the summer months with students attending 4-H University at the LSU campus next week. It was formerly known as 4-H Short Course. Also, parish students will be attending 4-H Summer Camp in July at Camp Grant Walker. Participation in the 4-H program is still good in the parish while the numbers have dropped overall statewide.
Rotary club members were reminded that the annual installation banquet is set for Tuesday night June 20 at 6;00pm at La Veille Banque on Main street. There will be no noon meeting next Tuesday.
Tune in Wednesday, June 14th after the Noon Report as Liz Hill and Stephanie Ware discuss the predictions for the 2017 Hurricane Season that began on June 1st and runs through the end of November. They will talk about ways you can prepare yourself, your family, pets, and your business in case a storm heads to Evangeline Parish. Classic Hits 92.5 on your radio dial and classichits925.com online.
Chateau Des Amis is helping bring awareness to abuse of the elderly by sponsoring an event on Wednesday, June 14th at 9:00 a.m. in observation of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. There will be a Community Walk and a Commemorative Plaque placed in front of the rose bushes for Awareness of Elder Abuse.
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, in the United States, experts have reported that knowledge about elder abuse lags as much as two decades behind the fields of child abuse and domestic violence.
Unfortunately, they say they simply do not know for certain how many people are suffering from elder abuse and neglect. Signs of elder abuse may be missed by professionals working with older Americans because of lack of awareness and adequate training on detecting abuse. The elderly may be reluctant to report abuse themselves because of fear of retaliation, lack of physical and/or cognitive ability to report, or because they do not want to get the abuser in trouble.
Guest speakers will be providing educational information on the many types of elder abuse and ways to prevent it. Refreshments will be served. That’s Chateau Des Amis at 955 Dardeau in Ville Platte. KVPI will be covering the event.
According to the Ville Platte Police department, a vehicle was stolen on or around May 24, 2017 from Eunice, Louisiana and was located on May 25, 2017 in Ville Platte. Two suspects fled from authorities and a warrant has been issued for their arrest.
Alshamir McKoy, 18 of 401 N. Chataignier Street and Antwan McKoy 30, of 124 East Wilson Street are wanted for possession of a stolen vehicle. Their bond is set at $15,000.00 each by Judge Gary Ortego.
Detectives are also searching for Crystal Renee Landry Edmunson 43, Corie Miller Road, Port Barre from an incident that happened in January 2017. Edmundson is believed to have left the area and is evading arrest. In January, Emundson was involved in a disturbance in the Ville Platte area and is wanted on charges of aggravated battery and domestic abuse battery.
If you know the whereabouts of any of these suspects, you are asked to call 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
The Ville Platte Police Department reports update on thefts from vehicles.
Over the past couple of weeks the Ville Platte Police Department has been stepping up extra patrol in the city in response to multiple reports of thefts from vehicles. The investigation is ongoing and as of today there has been one arrest and two search warrants have been executed.
According to Detective Sergeant Steven Deville, two houses that were searched on June 6, 2017 in which evidence was recovered from residences where juveniles were thought to be involved with the thefts. More arrests are expected as the investigation continues.
A suspect also believed to be involved was arrested on a trespassing charge. Arrested on June 2, 2017 was Brandon Jason, 20 of 216 Roderick Street in Ville Platte. Jason was transported to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s office and a $500.00 bond issued by Judge Chuck West.
Chief Neal Lartigue reminds residents to remain vigilant. The investigation is continuing and it is important to always be careful, pay attention to your surroundings, lock your vehicles, doors and windows. Keep an eye out in your neighborhood and to report any suspicious activity or suspicious person immediately by calling the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
The investigation of multiple thefts from unlocked vehicles within the city limits has yielded another arrest.
The Ville Platte Police Department received a report that a male subject was at someone’s home watching a game on television and took the keys to someone’s vehicle. Later that night the suspect took the vehicle from the homeowner’s residence using the stolen keys from the house he was visiting. The suspect was later arrested in Shreveport with the stolen vehicle, an unspecified amount of narcotics and a gun. The gun that was located was recently stolen from a vehicle in Ville Platte. Kelly Thomas, 25 of 304 West Lincoln Road, Ville Platte is currently incarcerated in Shreveport and will be facing extradition on charges of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, possession of a stolen firearm and carrying of a firearm by a convicted felon. A warrant issued for Thomas has a $100,000.00 bond set by Judge Chuck West.
According to Detectives the arrest of Thomas and earlier reported arrest are not the only ones expected. Detectives are requesting information on other suspects as their investigation continues.
Chief Lartigue reminds residents to keep vehicles, homes and outside buildings locked to prevent easy access to criminals and to continue to be vigilant in watching your property and your neighbor’s property for suspicious persons.
To report any information regarding the recent thefts from vehicles or any other illegal activity, please call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
The Ville Platte Fire Department would like to congratulate Assistant Fire Chief, Blake Perron and Firefighter, Dwayne Soileau for their 25 years as Louisiana State Firemen’s Association members, and 25 years as Volunteers with the Ville Platte Volunteer Fire Department. With this milestone, they both became lifetime members of the Louisiana State Firemen’s Association.
Fire Chief, Chris Harrison said "Congratulations from the entire department. The community appreciates your hard work and dedication to the fire service." KVPI would like to thank the Ville Platte Fire Department for their dedication to the community.
Pictured left to right are Blake Perron, Dwayne Soileau and Fire Chief Chris Harrison.
The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from Deacon Barney LeJeune with Jacob Crouch Suicide Prevention Services. Crouch was a student at U.L. excelling in sports and academics and three days before his graduation, he took his life. His family began this education service in his name. Deacon LeJeune said nearly everyone has been touched by suicide.
He quoted some startling statistics: Suicide is the 10th largest cause of deaths in the United States with young people ages 15-24 it is the second leading cause of death. Evangeline Parish is leading the state in the number of suicide deaths with 29 suicides per 100,000 people with neighboring parish Avoyelles Parish coming in at number two.
Among the greatest at risk are : recent divorcees, unemployment, life stress, rural residents with limited resources and experiencing a recent major loss.
The warning signs include: coded messages like talking about dying, giving away personal property, getting their life matters in order, low self esteem, no hope for the future, changes in personality, behavior, sleep patterns and eating patterns. The warning signs occur on social media such as Facebook.
He urges family members and friends to take these warning signs seriously, be sympathetic, and get help. Do not leave the person alone.
The guest speaker was a guest of Rotarian Maggie Ortego.
Rotarians were reminded of the annual Installation Banquet where the new officers will be installed at La Veille Banque June 20 at 6;00pm.
Evangeline Police Jury Meeting
June 5, 2017
The Evangeline Parish Police Jury Monday was presented a special plaque of appreciation from J.D. Soileau, President of the Viet Nam Veterans of America, Evangeline Chapter #632. The award named the police jury as a“Friend of V.V.A. 2017”. Soileau said the jury has permitted the restoration and maintenance work on the Viet Nam era “Huey” helicopter and the guns at the war monument on courthouse square. The monument includes the names of 12 local residents who were killed in Viet Nam. Soileau said “Thank you for keeping alive their memory for future generations.” Several members of the group were in attendance for the presentation.
In other business the police jury:
--approved a resolution to be sent to state and federal officials requesting emergency funding for future flood protection in Evangeline Parish;
--approved the reappointment of Lance Chapman, Desmond Thomas and Barry Bordelon to serve another term on the Ville Platte Recreation Board;
--approved a recommendation from Public Works Supt. Chester Granger to name the “Green Valley” road bridge in Faubourg as the number one priority for bridge replacement in the parish. The estimated cost is $525,000 to replace the bridge;
--went into executive session behind closed doors to discuss personnel matters . No action was taken once the doors opened again;
--approved a recommendation from Parish Engineer Ronnie Landreneau to spend $60,000 to repair Water Well Two at the Ward One Industrial Park.
--received a report from Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron that the 2 cent sales tax revenues in April brought in $243,988, a nearly $30,000 increase from April of 2016.
Smoked Meat Cook Off Results
June 6, 2017
Here are the results of the World Championship Smoked Meat Cook off that was held last weekend during the 2017 Smoked Meat Festival.
Congratulations to the two Grand Champion Award Winners: Amateur Grand Champion Winning Team- Fontenot and Ludeau Law Offices-Head Chef Chris Ludeau and their winning Dish- Tippin Tasso Slides; The Professional Grand Champion Winning Team: Teet’s Food Store Team One-Head Chef Luke Deville with the winning dish- Sweet n Sour Duck Breast.
In the Amateur Division, Tasso Category- First Place- Fontenot and Ludeau Law Offices, Second Place- Citizens Bank Team 2, Third Place- Mercy Regional Medical Center Team One.
In the Smoked Game Category: First Place- Martinique Cookers; Second Place- Evangeline Bank Team #2 and Third Place- Mercy Regional Medical Center Team 1.
In the Smoked Seafood Category: First Place- Cameron Team One; Second Place- Heritage Manor Team; Third Place- Citizens Bank Team Two.
In the Smoked Poultry Category: First Place- Evangeline Bank Team 2; Second Place- Cameron Team One; Third Place- Martinique Cookers.
In the Bar-B-Que/Smoker Category- First Place- Evangeline Bank Team One; Second Place- Cameron Team 2; Third Place- Mercy Regional Medical Team 1.
In the Sausage, Andouille and Ponce Category- First Place- Woodman Life Team; Second Place- H-U-Want It Team; Third Place- Cajun Grillerz Team.
In the Professional Division: Smoked Game Category- First Place- Teet’s Food Store Team 1; Second Place- Big Mamou Cajun Beef Jerky Team and Third Place- Papa Gators Team 2;
In the Sausage, Andouille and Ponce Category-First Place- Teets Food Store Team 1; Second Place- Big Mamou Cajun Beef Jerky Team; Third Place-Papa Gators Team 2.
In the Tasso Category: First Place- Papa Gators Team 1; Second Place- Leroy’s Cajun Meats Team; Third Place-Teet’s Food Store Team 2.
In the Smoked Seafood Category: First Place- Teet’s Food Store Team 2; Second Place-Leroy’s Cajun Meats and Third Place- Papa Gators Team 1.
In the Smoked Poultry Category: First Place- Boucanee Couillons; Second Place- Teets Food Store Team #2; Third Place- Mercy Regional Medical Center Team 2.
In the Bar-B-Cue/Smoker Category: First Place- Papa Gators Team 2; Second Place- Teet’s Food Store Team 2; Third Place- Teet’s Food Store Team 1.
Overall, there were 89 total dishes that the out of town judges sampled: 51 dishes in the Amateur Division and 38 dishes in the Professional Category.
The Smoked Meat Festival Association would like to thank all of the cooking teams and the judges for making this cook off another major success.
Despite the showers that came and went, the Louisiana Smoked Meat Festival went on with large crowds on hand at all of the events.
Dozens of cooking booths were on hand all around the Ville Platte Grand Pavilion this morning as both Amateur and Professional cooks prepared highly secret smoked meat recipes in hopes of garnering the prized smoke house grand prize. There were 34 judges from out of town on hand judging about 100 dishes in various smoked meat dishes. Among the judges were long time Baton Rouge Advocate Columnist Smiley Anders and his wife.
The opening ceremonies were very impressive as a team of Acadiana veterans and flag bearers representing the five branches of the military: army, marines, navy, air force and coast guard along with a special flag for the missing in action. Guest speaker was Col. Joey Strickland, Secretary of the Louisiana Office of Veterans Affairs. Special 50th anniversary pins were given to Vietnam Veterans in attendance.
During the opening ceremonies, the Francis Reed distinguished smoker award for 2017 went out to Bob Reed of Cajun Grillerz cooking team.
KVPI’s Carly Chaumont and Mark Layne were there covering the opening ceremonies and interviewing some of the cooking teams this (Saturday) morning.
KVPI News will have all of the results of the cook off by Monday morning. Keep listening for all the details.
Both Carly and Mark were able to meet with Country star headliners Aaron Tippen near his bus for a meet and greet after the broadcast.
2017 Smoked Meat Festival Kicks Off
June 2, 2017
The 25th annual Louisiana Smoked Meat Festival kicked off tonight with perfect weather, delicious food and great live music. The festival has moved a short distance to the civic center grand pavilion with a large dancing area and a new stage.
Festival goers were able to bring their children to the carnival to ride the rides and enjoy the games. Adults were able to enjoy Wicked Waters and later tonight Hit and Run.
The Classic Hits road crew were there covering it live with Josh and Mark. We spoke with many of those manning booths and cooking up food tonight. Be sure to look for Carly and Mark Saturday as we will be back at the festival from 10-1 including our live broadcast of the opening ceremonies for those who cannot attend.
The schedule Saturday includes the Smoked Meat Cook off and judging from 8-11am; 12;00 noon- Opening Ceremonies honoring all veterans; 3;00pm- Announcement of the winners in the cook off; 7-9pm- One Trick Pony; 10-12 midnight- Nashville Star Aaron Tippin. Admission is only $10 per person.
Former Ville Platte Police Officer, Larry Paul Fontenot, and his attorney, Jacob Fusilier, entered into a plea agreement in open court today (Friday) with the Evangeline Parish District Attorney’s Office. Fontenot was arrested in August of last year for malfeasance in office, extortion and video voyeurism for his role in intimidating two females during a traffic stop to exposing their breasts. In the original complaint, he was also accused of taking pictures of their breasts and showing other officers. The two females have settled a lawsuit filed against the Ville Platte Police Department for an undisclosed amount.
In the plea agreement, the bill was amended to One (1) count of Abuse of Office; and Two (2) counts of Intimidation by an Officer. By pleading Guilty to all three counts, Fontenot was sentenced to Five (5) year hard labor with Five (5) years suspended and Five (5) years active and supervised probation. For each of the two (2) counts of Intimidation by an Officer, Fontenot will receive Six (6) months in jail; Six (6) months suspended and One (1) year of probation. The two years of probation will be served concurrently with the larger charge.
The plea agreement also comes with two special conditions: 1) Fontenot is not allowed to hold any type of law enforcement position; and he is to attend court ordered counseling approved by Parole and Probation. That counseling could include Anger Management or Abusive Behavior.
Fontenot was also order to pay a $1,000.00 fine, plus additional court fees and costs.
Assistant District Attorney, Kelly Tate handled the case and presented it to The Honorable Chuck West who accepted the plea agreement into the record.
Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports an arrest of a juvenile.
On May 28, 2017 at approximately 7:00 p.m. the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a report of theft at the Ville Platte Northside Civic Center. Upon arrival Officers learned that numerous items such as sunglasses, cell phones and shoes were taken from the center. The items belonged to contestants that were at the center participating in the Smoked Meat Festival Pageant. Detectives investigating the thefts have recovered some of the items and have charged one juvenile at this time. This incident is still under investigation.
Chief Lartigue reports an arrest of one, search for a male suspect and information on a missing boat.
On May 1, 2017 at approximately 3:30 p.m. the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a call of theft on West Main Street. Upon arrival Officers learned that an aluminum boat, motor and trailer had been stolen from the yard of the residence. On May 26th the Basile Police Department made apprehended one of the two individuals that were in possession of the boat. Crystal Istre Jones, 41 of 302 9th Street in Mamou was arrested and charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. Jones was transported and booked into the Ville Platte City Jail and booked on a $7,500.00 bond.
Kirk Joseph Reed, 41 of 1702 Old Basile Highway, Basile remains at large and is wanted in connection with the theft of the aluminum boat.
Chief Lartigue is requesting information on the whereabouts of Kirk Joseph Reed and the aluminum boat. If you have any information in regards to this or any other illegal activity, you are asked to call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Ville Platte Rotary Club
May 30, 2017
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from representatives of CASA of St. Landry and Evangeline Parishes. CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates. It is a nonprofit organization that works closely with the courts dealing with foster children.
Madeline Rosette, director of the organization said the organization expanded its services to Evangeline Parish one year ago. She says her group is in need of additional volunteers to be an advocate with foster children.
Jeremy Richard, lead advocate and supervisor, said in Evangeline Parish there are nine volunteers to work with 24 children. There are over 70 children in foster care in this parish so there is a great need for more volunteers to assist abused and neglected children. He said there is a need for more foster parents since these children are being moved to as far away as Lafayette and New Orleans because of a lack of foster parents.
Craig LeBouef, chairman of the CASA board said the organization receives 80 percent of its federal funding directly from the state Supreme Court, The rest of its budget comes from groups like United Way and from fund raisers. Its current budget is $415,000. There are 15 members that serve on its board.
Board Member Gloria Nye said the average age for a foster child is 5 years old. She said “a five year old child cannot speak for themselves in the courts . They need an adult to represent them and that is where CASA comes in” There are only 17 parishes that have similar programs in the state. She recommended to the Ville Platte Rotary club to consider an annual award to the Foster Parent of the Year to recognize foster parents who are doing a great job.
In other business, the rotary club:
--recognized and welcomed one of its new club members: Scott Smith with Smith Air Conditioning;
--reminded club members that June 20 will be the annual installation banquet at La Veille Banque at 6:00pm;
--will be cooking a meal for the RYLLA youth at Lost Bayou Scout Camp near St. Landry Friday June 2 at 5:30pm. RYLLA is a rotary youth organization. The camp is hosting youth from Rotary District 6200 who will be attending camp all week.
The newly formed Evangeline Parish Soccer League held the 1st Annual ‘Kick It’ Concert and Fundraiser sponsored by and held at Ville Platte Rental. The festivities began at 3:00 p.m. Saturday. Soccer players sold tickets for hamburger plate lunches and raffle prizes prior to the event. DJ T-Rob played music for the crowd and Steph was LIVE on remote from the event over Classic Hit’s 92.5. Recording artist, Ashton Dupre performed for the crowd and took pictures with the raffle prize winners. There were soccer demonstrations and activities for the children to get familiar with the game. There was also face painting and a bake sale.
The Board members of Evangeline Parish Soccer would like to say a special thank you to every person who contributed to the event, including Ville Platte Rental and the staff. They worked very hard preparing all of the hamburger lunches. We also want to thank those businesses who donated items to be used in our raffle. Mark Duplechain Body Shop, Candace Morein, Shop’s Meat Market, Teet’s Food Store, Jack Miller BBQ, Kary’s Roux, B&S Grocery, Slap Ya Mama, Bayou Chicot Grocery, Evangeline Drug Store, Ville Platte Fire Department and City Appliance. A big thank you to Dynamic Environmental Services for cooking the hamburgers. From ticket sales and the bake sale at the event, Evangeline Parish Soccer raised over $2,600.00. We cannot say thank you enough! We’ll see you all on the soccer field!
On May 27th, a big fundraiser will be held at Ville Platte Rental to benefit the new Evangeline Parish Soccer league. Children registered to play soccer sold hamburger plate lunch tickets and raffle tickets for the event. All proceeds will go towards funding the league. On the day of the event beginning at 3:00 p.m., Ashton Dupre will perform, there will be a bake sale, face painting, soccer demonstrations, karaoke and tons of things for the kids to enjoy. Steph with KVPI will be LIVE on remote from the event along with DJ T-Rob. The league welcomes those who would like to coach or referee to attend the event. There will be another day of registration on the day of the event for those who were unable to attend the first one. For more information, please contact President, Thomas Scully or Vice President, Stephanie Ware at 337-296-7474. For updated information, log onto Evangeline Parish Soccer on Facebook. Registration is $35.00 a child will be for those who reside in Evangeline Parish. Late registration at the Draft will be $40.00.
In follow-up to the story first reported by KATC, KVPI News has learned that Basile Police Officer and part-time Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Deputy, Nicholas Richardson was arrested today (Friday) and booked on charges of Felony Aggravated Assault with a Firearm; Simple Battery and Malfeasance in Office.
The charges stem from an altercation that took place at the residence of Darrell and Mia Reed on May 17th. Video surveillance shows Richardson getting out of his police cruiser, pulling his gun from his holster and quickly returning it during a heated exchange between the parties.
Also arrested was Richardson’s father, Grayling Richardson. He was charged with Criminal Trespassing and Simple Battery. Allegedly, later in the day he returned to the scene and verbally and physically assaulted the residents.
KVPI News has confirmed with Basile Police Chief, Alton Ivory, Jr., that Richardson has been put on Indefinite Suspension without pay. Richardson only works part-time with the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office and we could not confirm the formal status of his employment there.
Nick Richardson’s bond was set at $18,000.00 by Judge Gary Ortego and both he and his father have bonded out of jail. (Photo courtesy of KATC footage)
VPBGC, Inc. will be opening a new location at 220 South Thompson Street (formerly Heritage Manor) behind the Evangeline Parish Library.
June 1st will be Parent Orientation and Information Meeting at 5:30 p.m. for all REGISTERED MEMBERS.
The Summer session will begin Monday, June 5th through July 28th from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. The Banquet is scheduled for Friday, August 4, 2017.
If anyone is interested in volunteering, please contact Dianna at 337-789-3873.
Seniors Attended Senior Day Event
May 25, 2017
More than 200 senior citizens from across the parish attended the annual Senior Day event at the Ville Platte Northside Civic Center today (Thursday). The event is sponsored annually for more than 20 years by the Evangeline Council on Aging. A Cajun music group from the Opelousas area provided the Cajun music and the dance floor stayed busy the entire time. The Evangeline Parish Chapter of the Viet Nam Veterans of America once again cooked and prepared a BBQ dinner for all the seniors who were there. After lunch, the Council on Aging conducted Bingo games for the seniors. The welcome was provided by Lisa Deouen, Director of the Council on Aging, Deacon and former director Gene LeBouef offered the invocation while Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel offered a prayer in Cajun French. The Viet Nam Veterans group led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance. KVPI FM 92.5 covered the event with a live remote.
Chief Neal Lartigue requests information on a suspect at large.
The Ville Platte Police Department is seeking information regarding the whereabouts of a suspect last known to be in the Ville Platte area. Regilinsky Joseph is a 20 year old black male that is currently wanted for criminal trespass and violation of a protection order. The warrant stems from a reported incident on May 20, 2017 when the suspect was trespassing at a residence on West Cotton Street and has since continued to harass the residents of the home and continues to violate the protective order issued against him.
If you have any information on the whereabouts of Regilinsky Joseph, you are asked to contact the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313, your call will remain anonymous.
According to the Ville Platte Police Chief, Neal Lartigue, the following individuals have recently been arrested and booked into the City Jail:
Samantha Charlie, age 17 of Monier Avenue – arrested for Simple Battery and currently incarcerated with a $1,000.00 bond;
James Jones, age 43 of High School Drive – arrested for Domestic Abuse Battery and two counts of Simple Battery and currently incarcerated with a $3,000.00 bond;
Jaron Thomas, age 29 of N. Coreil – arrested for Disturbing the Peace, Intoxication and Remaining After Forbidden and out on bond;
Tracey Arvie, age 24 of S. Soileau – arrested for Simple Battery and currently incarcerated with a $1,000.00 bond;
Timothy Kordisk, age 47 of Hwy. 167 – arrested for Remaining After Forbidden and currently incarcerated with a $500.00 bond; and
Robert Landry, age 30 of W. Hickory – arrested for Public Intoxication and Resisting an Officer and currently incarcerated with a $950.00 bond.
The official launch of French Immersion of Evangeline Parish public schools took place today (Wednesday) at Ville Platte High Auditorium.
Louisiana Governor took time from his busy schedule to attend the event to congratulate the school board and Evangeline Parish for its actions to begin a French Immersion program. The governor is in the middle of a legislative session deadlocked over financial issues and a pending visit later in the same day from Vice President Mike Pence.
Superintendent of Schools Darwan Lazard was the emcee for the event. Providing Cajun music was Mamou native Steve Riley and Mamou High French musicians. Fr. Mitch Guidry, pastor of Our Lady Queen of All Saints gave the invocation and benediction. Ville Platte High student Lazcano Llopis offered the Lord’s Prayer in French while Jaccorey Frank led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance in French.
Ville Platte Mayor Jennifer Vidrine welcomed visitors to Ville Platte and presented special gift baskets to the governor, Consul General and Education Superintendent.
Also speaking were Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser, Codofil President Bill Arcneaux, Gregor Trumel, Counsul General of France , Louisiana Education Superintendent John White, State Representative Bernard LeBas and State Senator Eric Lafleur.
A special presentation of $10,000 was made to Superintendent Lazard from the state officials to help with start up expenses to begin French immersion.
French immersion will begin in the early grades at both Ville Platte Elementary and Mamou Elementary.
KVPI AM was there covering the event.
In an update to our story from May 12th, KVPI News has learned that former employee of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office, Bobbi Jo Fontenot, turned herself into authorities Wednesday morning in the Evangeline Parish Courthouse. She has now been charged with Felony Theft.
According to a Statement from Sheriff, Eddie Soileau, through the efforts of Josh Fontenot, CPA (Evangeline Parish Chief Deputy Assessor), a “check substitution scheme” was discovered within the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office. An employee of the Sheriff’s Civil Department, Bobbi Jo Fontenot, was consequently arrested Wednesday morning on the charge of Felony Theft.
Soileau states: “We will continue our internal efforts in order to make a determination of how much money was taken and will continue to provide the information to the Louisiana State Police who have joined the investigation. The Louisiana Legislative Auditor has been apprised on the situation as well.”
KVPI News has confirmed that bond was set at $20,000.00 by Judge Gary Ortego and Fontenot has since bonded out of the parish jail. We will keep you updated as this investigation continues.
According to the Ville Platte Police Department, the following individuals have recently been arrested and booked into the Ville Platte City Jail:
Jonathan Gallow, age 32 of W. Pine Street in Ville Platte was arrested for Felony Theft. Bond was set at $20,000 by Judge Chuck West;
Jonathan Gallow was then again arrested on charges of Home Invasion, Aggravated Battery and Criminal Damage for allegedly entering a female’s home, attacking her and fleeing the scene. The incident remains under investigation. The subject was arrested and held without bond pending a Gwen Law Hearing ordered by Judge Gary Ortego;
Milton Jackson, age 43 of Houston, TX was arrested for Disturbing the Peace, Second Degree Battery and Unauthorized Entry of an inhabited dwelling. Bond was set at $30,000.00 by Judge Gary Ortego; and
Lucius Bradley, age 36 of Manuel Street in Ville Platte was arrested for Domestic Abuse, Aggravated Assault, Child Endangerment and Aggravated Battery and ordered to remain incarcerated pending a Gwen Law Hearing by Judge Gary Ortego.
The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from Dottie Clark, a pre- need specialist with Ardoin’s Funeral Home. Clark said it was important for people to make arrangements now and to share with the specialist, information about their personal life. Clark said a funeral should be a celebration of that person’s life by including personal items and photos that meant a lot to that person. She reported that the average funeral cost is $15,000 so it is very important to plan and prepare for final expenses. She also gave important advice dealing with Medicaid and your property. Clark was the special guest of Rotarian Richard LeJeune.
Also, the Rotary Club inducted its newest members into the club. Incoming Club President Wayne Vidrine welcomed the following new members: Jackie Riche’, Darwan Lazard, Annie Fruge and Renee Tate along with their sponsors.
In other club news:
--Leonard Glen Fontenot announced two members have agreed to make a donation to the Rotary International. Their donation will be matched by the club making the members, Nicole Wenger and Darwan Lazard, eligible to become Paul Harris Fellows. They will both be recognized at the club’s installation banquet June 20 at 6;00pm at La Veille Banque location. Rotary District Officer Linwood Broussard will be be installing the new club officers at that time.
The Evangeline Parish School Board is inviting the general public to attend the official launch of French Immersion in Evangeline Parish schools. French Immersion will be introduced to students at Ville Platte Elementary and Mamou Elementary next fall. The Launch program will take place Wednesday May 24 at 8:30am at Ville Platte High School Auditorium at 210 West Cotton Street. Special guests include: Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, Louisiana Superintendent of Schools John White, Consul General of France Gregor Trumel, State Senator Eric Lafleur , State Representative Bernard LeBas, Codofil President Bill Arceneaux and Evangeline Parish Superintendent of Schools Darwan Lazard. Seating is limited. KVPI 1050 AM plans to broadcast the entire event live for those who are at work and cannot attend in person.
The Evangeline Parish School Board Wednesday heard from Superintendent of Schools Darwan Lazard deny rumors that plans were in the works to reduce the number of employees working for the school system. Lazard said it is true that the school budget is based on school enrollment. He confirmed to board members and the general public Wednesday that the student enrollment from October to February has decreased by 44 students. “The reduction rumors are not true. We do not have a R.I.F. (reduction in force) about to begin,” he said. The superintendent remarked “It is too premature to speculate since the state legislature is still meeting to decide on such matters as funding the public schools.” Lazard said “ However, we have to live within our means. We cannot live by drawing down our savings, “ he commented.
The superintendent announced that the public will be invited to a special open house at Ville Platte Elementary May 24 at 8:30am to formally introduce the French immersion program to parish public schools. In the fall, both Ville Platte Elementary and Mamou Elementary will begin a French Immersion program for students in the early grades with assistance from Codofil and the state. Expected to be in attendance at the event will be Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, the State Education Superintendent, along with Codofil representatives. KVPI plans to broadcast the event with a live remote for those who are at work and could not attend.
Chataignier Elementary school Prinicipal Peggy Edwards along with members of her staff including David Ardoin and Melissa Coreil made a special presentation to board members on the programs going on at the school. The Pre-K -8th school has made great strides in overall test scores by having its school grade improve to a B ranking. The school has 340 students enrolled.
In other business, the school board:
--received a report from County Agent Todd Fontenot and 4-H Agent Kim Deville; Deville said there are 22 4-H clubs in parish schools. She announced four 4-H students were awarded national trips to New York and Washington D.C.;
--received news from Supt. Lazard that a special fund received from the 2016 state legislature will be distributed to school employees at the following rate: $214.28 to professional staff and $96.43 to support personnel.
The Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce Wednesday heard numerous speakers at their May meeting held at Main Street Pizza in Ville Platte. Members of the Chamber heard and watched a presentation by General Manager, Mark Layne and News Director, Stephanie Ware of KVPI on their recent awards presented by the Louisiana Association of Broadcasters. Nomination videos were shown to the crowd for both Radio Station of the Year and Morning Show of the Year. For the 7th year in a row, KVPI was awarded Radio Station of the Year and for the first time ever the Association presented a Morning Show of the Year Award and it was presented to Stephanie Ware in The Non-Blonde Café with Steph in the Mornings on Classic Hits 92.5. Layne spoke to the crowd and thanked all of the faithful advertisers and sponsors of KVPI. Since the radio station’s formation in 1953, advertisers have kept the radio station going by always supporting KVPI’s community efforts. Ware spoke to the crowd and said how “privileged” she feels knowing that people have so many avenues to listen to music and they are listening to KVPI all over the world. She read a message that she received Wednesday morning during her show from a listener in Ontario, Canada. The listener said “I know I can’t win the Nearly Impossible Question, but is the answer “Plan your next vacation?” I love listening to you.”
Members then heard from Samantha Guillory and Renee Brown with the Smoked Meat Festival. They both reported many of the changes that have taken place this year. The festival has been moved up a month as to avoid to terrible heat that has accompanied the festival in past years. It is not only the 25th Anniversary of the festival but also the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War. There will be recognition of many veterans at the festival and especially those from Evangeline Parish who perished in the war. They are asking for anyone who knows any family members of Gerald James Guillory from the Pine Prairie area or Wilson Jack, Jr. from the Ville Platte area call KVPI at 363-2124.
There will be a carnival, new local merchant area, cooking areas, musical acts like Wicked Waters and Aaron Tippon performing on a brand new stage built by Mike Ardoin with the Lyons Club, pageants, “Chopped” contests, 2-step contests, bartending contests and more. Tickets will be $10.00 to get in.
Don Taylor with American Benefits was also heard and announced that his company has teamed with Owens & Thomas Funeral Home and will be working within the community very soon.
Janice Fontenot with Troup d’ Evangeline announced their performances of The Odd Couple this Friday night at 8:00, Saturday at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. at the Ville Platte Civic Center.
Jerrie Ledoux with Congressman, Mike Johnson’s office announced she will be the liaison to this area and said he has in his 100 days in office held 5 Town Hall Meetings and plans to be in Ville Platte by the end of the year.
Dr. Spencer Launey of Ville Platte Family Care was voted in as the newest member of the Chamber.
Ville Platte Rotary Club Meeting
May 16, 2017
The Ville Platte Rotary Club, today (Tuesday) heard from Rotarian Kip Manuel share his experiences on his hunting trips to Quebec, Canada hunting black bears. Kip and his two hunting companions, from Texas and Virginia have gone on several bear hunting trips to northern Quebec. Since guns are not allowed in Canada, Manuel said he hunts bear with bow and arrow sitting in a stand.
He said the mosquitoes are as bad in Canada as they are in South Louisiana so he and his friends depend upon thermacel repellants.
Manuel said his knowledge of the French language here in Ville Platte has helped him converse with local residents.
He is planning to leave again in early June for another trip to Quebec.
Club President Peter Strawitz announced that Allstate Insurance through local agent Charlene Briley will donate a $1000 scholarship to the Ville Platte Rotary Club. He reported that part of the funds will be used to purchase a new Public Address system for the club.
Club members will be cooking a meal for some 100 young people from Rotary District 6200 who will be attending RYLLA Camp at the Mountain Bayou Scout Camp near St. Landry.
It was announced that the annual installation banquet for the club will be held June 20 with incoming president Wayne Vidrine, President Elect Richard LeJeune, Vice President Nicole Wenger and Treasurers Annette Johnson and Vic Slaven. The club has not yet selected a new secretary to replace Janice Helmer who is retiring after serving for many years.
Evangeline Parish Cops for a Cure is holding their annual Jail and Bail fundraiser. Steph was served with a warrant during her show and now is collecting money for the cause. All funds collected stay in Evangeline Parish to aid those affected by Cancer. Donations are taken at 809 W. Lasalle in Ville Platte. We thank the community for all of its support.
As the ongoing investigation into the May 11, 2017 officer involved shooting continues, Louisiana State Police investigators have identified the suspect as Brandon Arthur Carpenter (W/M 35 yrs) of Elizabeth, LA.
The initial investigation by State Police revealed that Hessmer Police Department initiated a pursuit involving Carpenter. The pursuit culminated at a residence near Moreauville on LA Hwy 114. Carpenter barricaded himself inside the residence while officers attempted to negotiate with him to surrender. During negotiations, Carpenter fired at officers. A Louisiana State Trooper and a Marksville Police Officer were shot and a Simmesport Police Officer was injured. It is currently unknown if his injuries were from the gunshot or flying debris.
The Trooper and the Marksville Police Officer were transported to a local hospital where they received treatment for non-life threatening injuries.
Carpenter is currently in custody at the Avoyelles Parish Detention Center. He has been charged with attempted first degree murder (3 counts). This investigation remains active, and additional charges may be pending.
Commencement exercises begin this weekend in Evangeline Parish Schools and continue through next week.
A total of 68 graduating seniors will be participating in the commencement exercises Sunday at 1:30pm at the Sacred Heart gym. The graduation program will be preceded by the commencement mass at 12 noon Sunday at Sacred Heart. This year’s Valedictorian is Wendy Maggio and Salutatorian is Ellis Lahaye.
Graduation ceremonies taking place in Evangeline Parish Public Schools next week include:
Ville Platte High commencement will take place Thursday night at 6;00pm in the football stadium weather permitting. The Valedictorian is Trace Trahan and the Salutatorian is Javonski Bellard.
Pine Prairie High graduation is planned for Thursday May 18 at 7:00pm at the Pine Prairie football field. There are a total of 111 graduating seniors due to participate.
On Friday May 19, Mamou High will graduate some 84 seniors in commencement exercises at St. Ann’s Church at 6:00pm. The Valedictorian is Austin Jon Fontenot and the Salutatorian is Jenna Lee Vidrine.
Also on Friday May 19, Basile High will hold their graduation ceremonies at 7:00pm in the school gymnasium.
Evangeline Parish Sheriff Eddie Soileau announced today that
“Unfortunately, there is sufficient evidence to suspect that an employee has compromised some deposits of monies within the agency.” Soileau went on to say “The results of our internal efforts, which are ongoing, have been and will continue to be shared with the Louisiana State Police who have agreed to join the investigation to help determine the details of the theft. We have notified the Louisiana Legislative Auditor regarding this most serious matter.”
In September of last year another employee, the former Chief Civil Deputy of the Sheriff’s Office, Rebecca Devillier was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor with 7 years suspended; 5 years of active and supervised probation after her release and she was ordered to pay restitution to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office in the amount of $114,981.00. Devillier was charged with performing her duties as the Chief Civil Deputy in an unlawful manner with the Sheriff’s Office by diverting funds and issuing checks to herself, unauthorized use of credit cards, etc. over a span of approximately 3 years.
Devillier is currently serving out her sentence at the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in St. Gabriel, Louisiana. She was being housed at Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women but was moved due to recent flooding. With time off for good behavior, she could be released in January of 2019.
KVPI News will keep you updated on the situation as it continues to develop.
The Eunice Rotary Club heard a presentation from KVPI at their noon luncheon today (Wednesday) at Ruby’s Restaurant.
KVPI General Manager Mark Layne along with KVPI News Director Stephanie Ware spoke about recently winning special awards at the Louisiana Association of Broadcasters Awards Banquet in March. KVPI won radio station of the year for the 7th year in a row while Ware’s “Non Blonde Café” won best morning show.
Rotary Club members viewed the nomination video clips that the broadcasting association judges reviewed for the radio station.
Also speaking was John Pucheu, who was in charge of the program time. Also in attendance was Dr. Rhonda Pucheu, President of Ville Platte Broadcasting Company, the parent company of KVPI.
Special thanks to Suzy and Mary at the Evangeline Parish Public Library for their use of the projector equipment.
The Ville Platte City Council and Mayor Jennifer Vidrine held their May meeting Tuesday night. The Council Room was full as citizens gathered to address different issues.
One of those issues was brought up by Ville Platte resident, Robert LaFleur, who spoke on the problem with individuals walking in the middle of the street at all hours of the night, loitering on street corners and children out late on the streets. He said that “Chataignier Street is the worst. Chataignier is so bad it’s a shame. They hang out on the corners for house and hours. It’s going to get worse and eventually, something is going to happen.” Business owners Keith Saucier and Lisa Crane also spoke about loitering. Their business is located on the same side of Main Street as The Bulldog. Crane firmly stated that “Something has to be done. I have video from my surveillance cameras showing people exposing themselves and urinating at my building, vomiting and throwing trash. There is broken glass in our parking lots and when the police do come and tell them not to loiter, as soon as the police leave, they come right back.” Crane stated it is not the patrons of the bar who are the problem. It is the individuals who cannot go into the bar and hang out in the parking lot and street.
Mayor Vidrine stated that the street and parking lot were a “trash can” after Easter break. She said “It’s just downright disgusting people urinating and vomiting and trashing the area. Then, they move down to the Exxon station after that and create noise problems with open trunks, loud music and disturbing the residents in that area as well.” The Mayor has asked Chief Neal Lartigue to do extra patrol in these areas and write tickets to anyone breaking the Loitering ordinance.
Councilman, Bryant Riggs, says he will introduce an ordinance at the June 13th meeting requiring all bar owners in Ville Platte to have private security at their business.
Residents affected by flooding in August and again last month were at the meeting to express concerns. Many questions were asked of the Mayor and Mayor Vidrine announced that as of the new budget year (July 1, 2017) they will begin using budget funds to tear out and replace incorrectly placed culverts with larger ones to ease drainage problems. She said this “is nothing new. This is a 40-year-old problem.” She said parts of Hickory Lane, Shady Acres, and Scenic Drive are going to be first and others will be decided on after city engineers can look at the area. The Mayor reminded everyone that you must call City Hall before you ever place any culverts on a property. There is a fine now for not doing so.
911 Director Liz Hill spoke to the audience and told how her father is diligent in cleaning his land, raking his yard, cleaning out the ditches and making sure the culverts are clear so water can drain. She said it’s “really important to take care of your property.”
The Mayor asked that all residents do just that.
Vidrine reminded everyone of the Grass ordinance on the books. Keep if cut or be fined. Letters are already going out and you will have ten (10) days from the date of the letter to get your grass cut; otherwise, the City will do it and tack the cost onto the property owner’s tax bill. Also she asked that you not blow leaves or grass into your ditches when you do cut.
Two representatives of the Louisiana Smoked Meat Festival Association board were guest speakers at today’s (Tuesday’s) meeting of the Ville Platte Rotary Club.
Renee Brown and Samantha Guillory addressed rotary club members to talk about the 25th anniversary of the festival. Brown said this year, the festival has pushed up its dates by one month to June 2 and 3 to avoid some of the hottest times of the year. Also, most of the events will be taking place at the Ville Platte Grand Pavilion area. A permanent stage has been built for the event and for other users of the facility.
Guillory said veterans will be able to attend the opening ceremony and events with no admission charge. There will be a hospitality center inside the civic center. Also there will be a traveling museum of veteran’ s memorabilia that will be at the civic center that weekend. Since it is the 50th anniversary of the Viet Nam War, a special presentation will be made to the families of deceased Viet Nam vets from Evangeline Parish.
It was announced there will be a carnival coming back for the children to enjoy during the festival. Musical entertainment includes Nashville headliner Aaron Tippin that Saturday night. One of the highlights is the smoked meat cook off where there is usually an average of 30 teams participating with some 150 entries for the judges to review.
The two speakers were the guests of Rotarian Bob Manuel.
Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue, reports two arrests in shooting and search for two others.
On March 19, 2017 at approximately 9:30 p.m. Officers responded to a report of a shooting in the 600 block of East Jackson Street. Upon arrival Officers found a black male had been shot in the leg. The victim was transported by Acadian Ambulance to Rapides Medical center for treatment. After further investigation by Detectives two were arrested and the search continues for two others.
Darious Armondo Arvie, 23 of 1009 Te Mamou Rd, Ville Platte was arrested and charged with principal to attempted second degree murder, aggravated assault with a firearm and principal to armed robbery. Arvie was booked into the Ville Platte City Jail on a $140,000.00 bond set by Judge Gary Ortego.
Roderic Darone Thomas, 25 of 1310 Peach Street, Ville Platte was arrested and charged with principal to attempted second degree murder, aggravated assault with a firearm and principal to armed robbery. Thomas was booked into the Ville Platte City Jail on a $125,000.00 bond set by Judge Gary Ortego.
Police are asking citizens to report the whereabouts of the following suspects in this ongoing investigation:
Trevor Lopez Ardoin who is a 25-year-old black male and Geraldo Orlandez Nelson (lead picture) a 28-year-old black male. If you know the whereabouts of either of these two men, you are asked to call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Saturday, May 6th is the VFW Annual Poppy Drive in Ville Platte from 7:30 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. at the following locations: Lasalle and Tate Cove; Lincoln and Tate Cove; and Hickory and Chataigner. All funds are used to assist Veterans in need, young and old. Any donations are welcome. Call Hillary Hill at 363-1938. If you are a veteran and you would like to volunteer or be a part of the drive, please meet them at the Veteran’s Home between 7:00 and 7:30 Saturday.
This is a beautiful way to support our Veterans.
DARE Graduations were held for 5th grade students at James Stephens Montessori on Thursday April 27, 2017. Later the same afternoon the graduation ceremony for and Sacred Heart Elementary 5th grade students took place in the Sacred Heart Elementary Gym. Children completing this program were taught an hour every school day for ten weeks about the dangers of drugs, alcohol, bullying and the difference between making bad decisions and smart decisions. Detective Sergeant Charles Hall worked in the classrooms with the children to educate them on these dangers, temptations and peer pressure. During each ceremony the guest speaker, Pastor Caleb Semien from the Word Ministries Church in Eunice La, spoke to the children about focusing on being the best that they can be each day and surrounding themselves with positive influences while keeping negative influences away.
The children are each asked to write an essay at the end of the DARE Program describing what they learned and how the program benefits them. One winner from each class was chosen.
From James Stephens Montessori the essay winners are:
Camry Freeman (Teacher Chenile Tezeno)
Mason Buller (Teacher Julie Landreneau)
Sacred Heart Elementary essay winners are:
Gavin Soileau (Teacher Jesslyn Perrodin)
Taylor Darbonne (Teacher Missie Soileau)
After each ceremony all of the children were treated to refreshments donated by Walmart. Chief Lartigue and Det. Sgt. Hall extend a special thanks to Pastor Semien as guest speaker and Walmart Manager Josh Anderson for their participation in this worthwhile program.
“It’s important to work with our youth to give them the tools and knowledge that allows them to build a better future.” Chief Neal Lartigue said. “The DARE program sets guidelines and teaches them what problems they may face in society today and gives them decision making skills to help cope with these situations. “
This is James Stephens Montessori’s first year participating in the DARE Program since the program is geared toward fifth grade students. The addition of fifth grade classes this school year made the school eligible to participate and we are excited to be teaching this program there.
This graduation marks the 26th year that the Ville Platte Police Department has taught the DARE Program in our schools.
Community spiritual leaders and Christian Heritage Academy celebrated The National Day of Prayer Thursday in front of the courthouse in Ville Platte. Students, teachers and residents attended the ceremony at Noon. On April 17, 1952, President Harry Truman signed a bill proclaiming the National Day of Prayer into law in the United States.
VILLE PLATTE ROTARY CLUB HEARS FROM SCHOOL OFFICIALS
MAY 2, 2017
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard Liz Chatelain, principal at Mamou High and Chataignier Elementary Teacher Tim Comeaux.
Chatelain is High School Principal of the Year in the parish and is in the running among 24 finalists for Louisiana Principal of the Year. She is the child of educators and is a Mamou native. She went to school in Mamou and came back and taught school at Mamou schools. She told club members “Teaching is an adventure. I love my job.” Supervisor Grace Sibley reported that due to the efforts of Chatelain and her staff, they were able to move Mamou High from a Grade C rating to an A grade. It was also reported that U.S. News and World Report Magazine ranked Ms. Chatelian as the 33rd best principal in Louisiana.
Also recognized was Chataignier teacher Tim Comeaux who was named as Evangeline Parish Middle School Teacher of the Year. Comeaux , a science teacher, was accompanied by some of his students. The students designed some homemade musical instruments and they showed them off with a special musical performance for club members. Comeaux said “The classroom experience has changed drastically since we all went to school and we have to change with the times. We have to make sure the students connect with what is being taught.”
Superintendent of Schools Darwan Lazard was in charge of the program time.
According to Evangeline Parish Sheriff, Eddie Soileau, a woman was arrested early Sunday morning, April 30, 2017 after being accused of leaving her 2 year old child alone in a car located in the Y-Bar parking lot. Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy responded to a dispatch call a little after midnight concerning the unattended vehicle with a child inside parked at the 6000 Block of Highway 10 (Vidrine Road).
Witnesses say the 2 year old toddler had been left alone inside the car for approximately an hour and the mother was aware. The child was taken into custody by a relative safe and unharmed.
The mother of the child was identified as Hannah Michelle Brignac. Hannah was arrested and charged with Cruelty to Juveniles, Child Desertion, and Improper Supervision of a Minor. Her bond was set at $30,000.00 by 13th Judicial Judge Chuck West.
Also arrested and charged were Joseph Allen Ledee Sr. with Cruelty to Juveniles, Child Desertion and Improper Supervision of a Minor. His bond was set at $30,000.00 by 13th Judicial Judge Chuck West.
Joseph Ferrell Brignac Jr. was arrested and charged with Cruelty To Juveniles, Interfering with a Law Enforcement Investigation, Resisting An Officer by Force or Violence, Attempt to Disarm a Police Officer, Battery on a Police Officer, and Disturbing The Peace (by Intoxication). His bond was set at $30,000.00 by 13th Judicial Judge Chuck West
The Evangeline Parish Police Jury held its May meeting Monday night in the Evangeline Parish Courthouse. Public Works Director, Chester Granger, spoke about the flooding over the weekend and expressed concerns over the water levels in the parish as well as those in other waterways our parish drains into. Granger stated he has been with the Police Jury for 20 years and this is “the highest level he's seen.” He continued that: “If we get a large amount of rain Wednesday like The National Weather Service is calling for, it could be a bad situation. We are looking at all of the scenarios and we will have to see what happens.” Granger stated there will be sandbags available to residents beginning at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday morning at the Basile, Mamou and Ville Platte yards. People will need to fill their own sandbags when they receive them.
Granger went on to tell residents “We got hammered pretty hard by the rain and I know people are frustrated; but, we want you to know that every day of every week, we are working on drainage. We try our best and we don’t want anyone’s property to be lost. Please understand there is only so much we can do.” He said their crews are still working on fixing roads and washouts from Sunday.” The National Weather Service has called for and 80% chance of 4-5 inches of rain falling Wednesday.
Juror, Bryan Vidrine, said he would like to look at purchasing a ‘drone’ to be able to fly over our area in case flooding happens. He stated the drone could cost approximately $2,500.00 and in addition to that cost, someone would have to be trained as a licensed drone pilot/operator. When asked what account the funds would come from, he stated “probably the drainage funds.”
County Agent, Todd Fontenot and Lelia Deville with 4H spoke to the Jury for their Annual 4H Report. Deville explained that 4H empowers nearly 6 million youth across the globe today, reaching all the way from China to South Africa and right here in Evangeline Parish. This year 4H doubled the amount of workshops given and they have also doubled the size of their shooting sports program sending 8 successful shooters to represent Evangeline Parish in the State Shooting Sports Competition.
Secretary/Treasurer, Donald Bergeron, reported that he has been told the Ville Platte Sudden-link office will be closing on May 26th. He also reported that May 4th is the National Day of Prayer and asked everyone to take a moment of silence.
Sales Tax Collections for March were $396,933.97 which was up $14,626.00 from this time last year. The Jury thanked everyone for shopping locally and keeping our tax dollars here.
The circumstances surrounding a deadly house fire in De Ridder Sunday night remain the focus of State Fire Marshal investigators.
Investigators were dispatched to 1128 N. Texas Street in De Ridder late Sunday after fire crews responded to a reported residential structure fire shortly after 10:00 p.m. Upon their arrival, firefighters were met outside the residence by one of the occupants, Dennis Morgan, 69, who reported that his wife was still inside the burning home.
After beginning suppression efforts, firefighters entered the structure and discovered the lifeless body of 70-year-old Berdie Morgan in the living area of the home, which prompted the call to investigators. After being examined by investigators, the victim’s body was released to the Beauregard Parish Coroner’s Office for autopsy.
Dennis Morgan was transported by ambulance to Beauregard Memorial Hospital in De Ridder for treatment of severe smoke inhalation.
While no official cause of the fire has been determined, investigators established that the fire originated in the living room in an area in close proximity to where the victim’s body was located.
The investigation into the cause of the fire continues.
PUBLIC SCHOOLS CLOSED MONDAY IN EVANGELINE PARISH
APRIL 30, 2017
In a statement to KVPI News tonight (Sunday), Supt. of Schools Darwan Lazard announced “All Evangeline Parish public schools will be closed for students on Monday May 1 as a result of the recent flooding event which has impacted our campuses and caused roads to be unsafe for bus travel. All Evangeline Parish School Board employees are to report to their assigned work site. Please dress in casual work clothes to assist in making your campus fully operational for Tuesday May 2 when we will resume our normal schedule.”
DIXIE YOUTH RADIO AUCTION BIG SUCCESS
APRIL 30, 2017
Despite the flooding conditions and poor weather conditions on Sunday, the 2017 Dixie Youth Radio Auction was a success.
Many people took advantage of staying home, listening on the radio and calling in their bids. Later in the day as the water receded and weather improved, the civic center was busy with people viewing the items up for bids.
A cooking crew prepared hamburgers for those wanting something to eat. There were two phone lines throughout the day for people to call in their bids and they remained busy.
The items included everything from cakes and home made sweets to fishing and hunting trips. All of the items were donated to Ville Platte Youth Incorporated and Ville Platte Girls Incorporated to help fund the summer youth program for hundreds of young people.
John Pitre of Ville Platte Youth Inc. and Shane Darbonne with Ville Platte Girls Inc. would like to thank the dozens of parents, coaches and volunteers who worked all day along with the many people who turned in bids and the many businesses who donated items for the two youth programs.
The radio auction took place over KVPI FM 92.5 all day from 10:00am to 5:00pm.
April 29, 2017
Complete election returns from Saturday’s runoff elections show Evangeline Parish voters voted in favor of Candyce Perret for judge in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. Complete but unofficial returns shows in Evangeline Parish shows Perret received 1796 votes or 76 percent of the vote while her opponent Susan Theall got 549 votes or 23 percent of the vote. Perret was elected the circuit court seat by winning 55 percent of the vote.
Voters in Evangeline Parish overwhelmingly approved the renewal of three tax millages called by the Evangeline Parish School Board.
Voters approved the renewal of a 10.35 mill tax for another years to help supplement the pay of school employees, both teachers and support workers, The vote was 2119 yes and 358 voting no.
Also, a millage tax renewal was approved by the voters to renew for another ten years a 12.32 mill tax in consolidated District 2 to maintain school buildings. The vote was 1898 yes and 363 voting no.
In the Basile School District, voters there renewed a 6.19 mill tax for another ten years for the upkeep and maintenance of school buildings. The vote 143 yes and 23 voting no.
Special thanks to Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel for furnishing us these vote totals
This morning, friends and family are mourning the loss of and remembering Brett Fontenot who was killed in an overnight crash in Evangeline Parish. According to the Louisiana State Police, on April 28, 2017, shortly before 2:00 am, Louisiana State Police Troop I was notified of a single vehicle fatality crash on US 167 near Alligator Lane. The crash claimed the life of 22-year-old Brett M. Fontenot of Ville Platte.
The initial investigation by State Police revealed, Fontenot was operating a 2004 Chevrolet Silverado northbound on US 167. For unknown reasons, Fontenot ran off the right side of the roadway, overcorrected to the left, entered a ditch and overturned. Fontenot was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle. Fontenot sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead on scene by the Evangeline Parish Coroner’s Office. It is unknown if impairment was a contributing factor, but standard toxicology results were obtained and sent to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for analysis.
This crash remains under investigation. KVPI News will keep you updated on the status of the investigation and will bring you the funeral arrangements as soon as they are available.
The Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce held the 2017 Chamber Banquet Thursday night at the North Side Civic Center. The Ville Platte Jr. R.O.T.C. presented the Colors. Fr. Richard Vidrine offered the prayer. Brent Coreil served as the Master of Ceremonies following that and throughout the event he would come to introduce Chamber President, Dr. Tojo Ward, Executive Director, Camille Fontenot and other guests. Many Chamber members enjoyed the event as guest speakers, Lt. Governor, Billy Nungesser and Columnist/Author, Jim Bradshaw spoke to the crowd about the uniqueness of Evangeline Parish. Nungesser also spoke about new promotions involving tourism in Louisiana and shared a few personal stories about his travels throughout the State. Bradshaw shared in-depth views about the “heart” of Louisiana and kept the crowd involved as he spoke on different aspects of our state.
After attendees enjoyed a delicious meal, Director, Camille Fontenot, announced the nominees for Business Person of Year, Business of the Year, Man of the Year and Woman of the Year.
The nominees were as follows:
Business Person of the Year: Alana McClaskey – Owner of The Flower Patch; Carl Fontenot – President of Citizens Bank; Ronald Doucet – Ronald’s Janitorial Service and Victor Slaven – Kolder, Champagne & Slaven & Co.
Business of the Year: B&S Neighborhood Market; Cayenne Heating & Cooling; Citizens Bank; Flat Town Farm Supply & Hardware; The Flower Patch; Gobble Gulley; Thomas Construction Co.; Uptown Cake Company and Ville Platte Gazette.
Man of the Year: Rev. Matthew Alfred, Jr.; Patrick Derouselle; Leonard Glynn Fontenot and Donald Ray Thomas.
Woman of the Year: Nina Daire David and Stacey Freeman-Jordan.
The winners were:
Agriculture Persons of the Year: Kyle and Kane Fontenot
Man of the Year: Leonard Glynn Fontenot
Women of the Year: Nina Daire David and Stacey Freeman- Jorden
Business Person of the Year: Carl Fontenot – Citizens Bank and Victor Slaven – Kolder Champagne Slaven & Co.
Business of the Year: Flat Town Farm Supply and UPTOWN CAKES
Thank you to D.J. T-Rob Soileau for providing the music and a big thank you to all of the volunteers who served the food and beverages at the event.
According to Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue, on April 25, 2017 a warrant of arrest was issued and a suspect arrested in the shooting that occurred on April 23 on North Chataignier and East Jackson. Tiberrious Wilson, 19 of 128 East Pine Street was arrested on the evening of April 25, 2017 and booked into the Ville Platte City Jail on the charges of second degree murder, attempted second degree murder, aggravated criminal damage to property, illegal use of a weapon or dangerous instrument and carrying of a firearm by a convicted felon. Wilson was transported to the Evangeline Parish Jail where he remains incarcerated on a 1,425,000.00 (One million four hundred twenty-five thousand dollar) bond issued by Judge Chuck West.
Chief Lartigue would like to remind citizens that this investigation remains active and requests anyone with any information to please contact the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
VILLE PLATTE MAN AND WOMAN OF THE YEAR NOMINEES
APRIL 21, 2017
The Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce officially announced the nominees for the 2017 Man and Woman of the Year Honors.
The nominees for Woman are the Year are:
Stacy Freeman Jorden who is employed with Ville Platte Probation and Parole. She is married to Detective Duane Jorden and the mother of three children. She is also a volunteer leader in the Girl Scouts in changing girl’s lives for the better. Stacy is also active in her church serving as financial and corresponding secretary at the St. Peter Baptist Church and at the St. John Baptist Church;
Nina Daire David is an educator and is married to Biff David and they parents of three and they have two grandchildren. Nina is a master teacher and is currently a librarian at Mamou Lower Elementary School. She was the President of Keep Evangeline Beautiful and worked hard with groups to keep the parish clean through various projects. She served as Ville Platte City Clerk. She loves hiking and the outdoors.
The nominees for Ville Platte Man of the Year include:
Donald Ray Thomas who is the owner of Thomas Construction. He is married to Jessica Doucet Thomas and the parents of four children. He is a member of the Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church and serves on the Evangeline Parish Solid Waste Commission, His nomination letter says “Donald will go the extra mile for anyone.” He loves to volunteer and help people whenever he is asked.
Leonard Glynn Fontenot, a retired Cleco employee after 35 years who served as Vice President of Generation. He is married to Mary Alice Fontenot and they are the parents of four children. His service to the community include: a Eucharistic minister, President of the Queen of All Saints Parish board, Babe Ruth baseball organization president, participated in the Contredanse as a dance team, served on the Humana Hospital board and the Ville Platte Citizen Cabot committee, retreat captain for Ville Platte at the Our Lady of the Oaks Retreat House and past member of the Sacred Heart school foundation board.
Patrick Derouselle is married to the former Jerianne Ruggles and is the father of three children. He is the executive director of the Evangeline Parish Solid Waste Commission. He is active as president of the Evangeline Parish Communications District 9-1-1 Board, a member of the Ville Platte Emergency Preparedness Committee, a member of First Baptist Church of Ville Platte and President of the Louisiana Cotton Festival Association. He is also a 30 year volunteer firefighter. He was also involved in the Ville Platte Jaycees and past chairman of the Ville Platte Planning Commission Board.
Rev. Matthew Alfred Jr. is the moderator and president of the Eastern Seventh District Baptist Association. As the president he is inspirational in developing mentor programs to lead the youth along their journey in spiritual growth and maturity. Rev. Alfred is a father, husband and a humble leader. Alfred has a great passion for making his community distinctive and an enjoyable place to live.
The announcement of Ville Platte’s 2017 Man and Woman of the Year will be made at the Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce Civic Awards Banquet Thursday April 27 at the Ville Platte Northside Civic Center. Tickets are now available at the chamber of commerce office.
UPDATE: Shooting on Buzz Lane
Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office has released the following:
On April 17, 2017 Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office was called out to 1813 Buzz Lane in reference to the shooting of a person.
During the initial investigation, investigators were able to identify Floyd Porche Jr as the shooter. The motive determined was that Floyd Porche Jr. shot at Stacy Porche after having an unsettled dispute amongst family.
Stacy Porche was AirMed to Lafayette General Hospital where she was stabilized and is doing well as of today. Stacy suffered from wounds to her right hand and the left side of her right breast area.
Floyd Joseph Porche Jr was arrested and charged with Attempted 2nd Degree Murder. His bond was set at $250,000.00 by 13th Judicial Judge Chuck West.
UPDATE: Ville Platte Police Department Vehicle Pursuit
Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office has released the following:
On April 17, 2017 at about 1651 hours Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputies joined a vehicle pursuit already in progress by the Ville Platte Police on Foreman Road in the Bayou Chicot area. The fleeing vehicle traveled through St. Landry and Avoyelles Parishes on Highway 115 before returning to Evangeline Parish and coming to a stop on Bayou Torreau Road. The two occupants of the vehicle fled the scene on foot.
After further investigation the driver was identified as Samuel Lee and the passenger as Ashley Lamb. The Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office has issued Warrant of Arrests on both individuals in connection with this incident.
Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Detectives are in search of Samuel Lee and Ashley Lamb for their arrest.
Anyone with information of their whereabouts is urged to contact the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Investigation Division by phone at 337-363-2161. All callers with information will and always remain anonymous.
Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Camille Fontenot announced the nominees for the 2017 Ville Platte’s Man and Woman of the Year.
The nominees for Ville Platte Woman of the Year are: Stacy Freeman Jordan who is employed with Ville Platte Probation and Parole and Nina David, an educator at Mamou Elementary School.
The nominees for Ville Platte Man of the Year are: Rev. Matthew Alfred, local minister, Donald Ray Thomas, local business man, Pat Derouselle, director of the Evangeline Parish Solid Waste Commission and Leonard Glenn Fontenot, retired Cleco official.
We will have additional biographical information about each nominee in the next few days.
Ville Platte’s Man and Woman of the Year for 2017 will be announced at the Chamber of Commerce Civic Awards Banquet Thursday April 27 at the Ville Platte Civic Center.
According to Ville Platte Chief of Police, Neal Lartigue, the following individuals have been recently arrested and booked into the City Jail:
Sheamous Frank of 1110 N. Chataignier – Arrested for Criminal Trespassing and out on a $500.00 bond;
Brandi Soileau of 410 Wilson – Arrested for Theft of Goods with a $500.00 bond;
Terrell Green, age 32 of 1726 State Avenue – Arrested for Resisting Arrest and Battery on a Police Officer and currently out on a $3,250.00 bond;
Bonnie Leday, age 53 of 109 E. Jefferson – Arrested for Disturbing the Peace by Intoxication and Sexual Battery and out on a $1,200.00 bond; and
Bryan Weston, age 18 of 629 N. Long Street – Arrested for Criminal Damage to Property and currently incarcerated with a $700.00 bond.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from representatives of KVPI. KVPI General Manager Mark Layne, KVPI News Director and Non Blonde Café Host Stephanie Ware and Co-Host Lisa Crane.
Layne announced to club members that KVPI has won the radio station of the year award for the seventh year in a row for its community service. For the first ever, KVPI won a second award for Best Morning Show for “The Non Blonde Café” with Stephanie Ware. The awards were presented at the annual Prestige Awards banquet held last month by the Louisiana Association of Broadcasters.
Club members were able to view the actual video nomination clips that the judges reviewed. Special thanks to Suzie Lemoine with the Evangeline Parish Library for the use of their audio-video equipment.
Ware said she was proud of the reception she is receiving from the growing number of listeners on air and on social media for her daily morning show.
Crane said she was proud to be a part of a radio show that gives back to the community through community service programming. Crane is co-host with Stephanie Ware on “Women on Wednesday” during the Non Blonde Café.
Layne thanked the business community of Ville Platte for their support through the years. He expressed his appreciation to President Rhonda Fink Pucheu, a second generation broadcaster for her backing and guidance. He said he was proud that the radio station has never changed its primary goal of “Keeping Ville Platte Informed and Entertained” since 1953 when the station first signed on.
Rotary club member Jimmy LeBlanc was in charge of the program.
Early voting has begun in Evangeline Parish and elsewhere for the April 29 election.
The only candidate race facing voters parish wide is the runoff race for Judge in the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals between Candyce Perret and Susan Theall. The district includes Evangeline, St. Landry, Acadia, Vermillion, Allen, Iberia, Lafayette, and St. Martin parishes.
Also, voters in the Basile School District which includes parts of Evangeline and Acadia parishes will decide the renewal of a 10 year, 6.19 mill property tax for the upkeep and maintence of school facilities in the Basile School district.
Voters parish wide will vote on whether to renew a ten year, 10.35 mill property tax to help fund the pay for school employees.
Voters in District 2 which is the entire parish except for Basile will vote on the renewal of a ten year, 12.32 mill property tax to continue the upkeep and maintenance of school buildings.
Early voting is going on now through Saturday April 22 at the Registrar of Voters office in the courthouse.
KVPI and Southwest Beverage teamed up once again this year for the Annual Bud-N-Boiling Contest. Listeners had to call our hotline at 506-2666 when they heard the “Budweiser Cue to Call”. We took the 5th caller each time and qualified them for the big Grand Prize Package. Each qualifier was given a 12-pack of Budweiser and other Budweiser gear like t-shirts, koozies, and Mardi Gras beads. Our drawing was held on Wednesday and Desiree Hundley’s name was drawn. Congratulations! Keep listening for more chances to win on Acadiana’s Greatest Hit Station Classic Hits 92.5.