Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Bud’s Broiler employee forced into cooler at gunpoint during armed robbery, NOPD says

Posted By on Tue, Aug 1, 2017 at 11:00 AM

An employee at Bud's Broiler on City Park Avenue was held up at gunpoint and forced into a cooler during an armed robbery early Tuesday. - PHOTO COURTESY BUD'S BROILER/FACEBOOK
  • An employee at Bud's Broiler on City Park Avenue was held up at gunpoint and forced into a cooler during an armed robbery early Tuesday.

An employee at Bud’s Broiler (500 City Park Ave., (504) 486-2559) was robbed at gunpoint and forced into a cooler early Tuesday morning, police said.

A preliminary report from the NOPD said an armed woman entered the City Park Avenue burger joint shortly after 2 a.m. and forced an employee “into the cooler area,” at gunpoint. The suspect then went into the restaurant’s office, took several bags of cash and locked the employee inside the cooler before fleeing the scene.

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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

In Jefferson, a peaceful changing of the guard — but war is imminent

Posted By on Wed, Jul 26, 2017 at 6:44 PM

Former state Rep. Joe Lopinto (left) will become interim sheriff of Jefferson Parish after the resignation of Sheriff Newell Normand.
  • Former state Rep. Joe Lopinto (left) will become interim sheriff of Jefferson Parish after the resignation of Sheriff Newell Normand.

Things are rarely dull in Jefferson Parish politics. I still recall the factional wars of the 1980s and early ’90s between then-DA John Mamoulides and then-Assessor Lawrence Chehardy. No election was insignificant.

Some see the resignation of Sheriff Newell Normand and the rise of interim Sheriff Joe Lopinto as triggering another era of political warfare in Jefferson. Truth be told, war has been coming to Jefferson for some time. The factional leaders are Normand and Parish President Mike Yenni. Everyone else has to choose sides. Normand’s decision to turn in his badge for a talk-radio mic at WWL-AM is merely the latest run-up to open hostilities.

As sheriff, Normand often took sides at election time, but between elections he stayed in his lane. Now, as a radio talk show host, he can talk about any issue that concerns him. He will be a very interesting talk show host, to say the least.

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Normand steps down as Jefferson Parish sheriff; will join WWL-AM as radio host

Posted By on Tue, Jul 25, 2017 at 3:03 PM

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand.
  • Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand announced today he'll be stepping down as sheriff Aug. 31 and soon after will start a new career: as midday talk show host on WWL-AM, taking the slot held by Garland Robinette, who retired earlier this month.

In a statement provided by Entercom, the company that owns WWL-AM, Normand said, "I always listened to Garland and admired his voice in our community. He played a pivotal role in New Orleans' recovery & rebirth from Katrina. Plus, good leaders know when it's time to move on. I'm satisfied that Jefferson Parish is in great shape. The crime rate hasn't been this low since 1974. And strong leadership is ready to step in and take over a great team — one I care about deeply and will miss dearly,"

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Youth who commit misdemeanors could receive warnings or summonses under proposed ordinance

Posted By on Mon, Jul 24, 2017 at 5:45 PM

New Orleans youth who commit misdemeanor offenses could receive warnings or summonses to appear in court with a guardian, under a proposed ordinance aimed at preventing young people from entering, and often re-entering, the criminal justice system after an arrest.

The ordinance was supported by the New Orleans City Council's Criminal Justice Committee July 24, and it also has the support of Orleans Parish Juvenile Court judges and, for the most part, Mayor Mitch Landrieu. It now heads to the full City Council for approval.

Committee chair and District A Councilmember Susan Guidry said "police have no alternative but to handcuff the child [who commits minor offenses]. I mean that is a serious, traumatic event.”

Under the ordinance, youth who have committed a status offense (truancy, running away, displaying "ungovernable behavior") would receive a juvenile warning notice (JWN). Police also would write JWNs or issue summonses for 11 types of misdemeanor crimes — including simple assault and simple possession of marijuana, misdemeanor theft, criminal mischief and criminal trespassing — at the officers' discretion.

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Editorial: Once again, demagogues taking pot shots at New Orleans

Posted By on Thu, Jul 20, 2017 at 4:01 PM


U.S. Sen. John Neely Kennedy was in New Orleans this week — not for a town hall or public constituents’ meeting, which he has yet to hold in the state’s largest city since he took office six months ago. No, he was here to talk with WWL-TV about the city’s crime problem, which he once again said could turn New Orleans into “the next Detroit.”

Kennedy previously used the “Detroit” slur in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the confirmation of FBI Director Christopher Wray. In that hearing, Kennedy also claimed hyperbolically that the Crescent City was becoming “the murder and armed robbery capital of the Western Hemisphere.”

Since Kennedy has been scarce around these parts after moving to Washington D.C., we thought we’d remind him of a few things.

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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Landrieu fires back at Sen. John Neely Kennedy's criticism of New Orleans' crime rate

Posted By on Wed, Jul 12, 2017 at 3:55 PM

U.S. Sen. John Neely Kennedy.
  • U.S. Sen. John Neely Kennedy.

U.S. Sen. John Kennedy has lately been critical of New Orleans’ crime rate and Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s crimefighting strategy, giving an interview to Fox 8 News and writing a guest column for on the subject. "Crime is stealing the soul of New Orleans," Kennedy wrote. "It's choking the life and livelihood out of it. I used to live in New Orleans, and now I'm a little scared to go for a walk there. Our mayor seems preoccupied with other things and other ambitions,” Among the remedies Kennedy has suggested is implementation of a "stop-question-frisk" policy for the New Orleans Police Department.
Today Landrieu fired back, citing what he saw as the city's accomplishments since he's been in office. "Murder and violent crime rates are down over 60 percent from their historic peak in the 1990s," he said in a statement. "I have been to too many funerals and consoled too many mothers at crime scenes, for a career politician like John Kennedy to pander from the peanut gallery, especially when he can actually do something to help."

(Both Kennedy and Landrieu have been involved in Louisiana politics since the late 1980s.)

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Friday, July 7, 2017

Sen. John Kennedy calling for 'stop and frisk' in New Orleans, FOX 8 reports

Posted By on Fri, Jul 7, 2017 at 8:33 PM

  • Sen. John Neely Kennedy.
In an interview with FOX 8 News today, Sen. John Neely Kennedy said Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) should implement a "stop and frisk" policy in order to combat crime in the city.
"It worked in New York," he said. "It's the only way I know left to get the guns and thugs and dopes off the street. We got young people killing young people and now other citizens, and the reason is they got these guns, and until you get the guns you're not going to stop it. The criticism of it is it's racial profiling. No, not when it's done correctly. When it's done correctly, race has nothing to do with it." 

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Thursday, July 6, 2017

Mayor Landrieu reflects on 'foundation' and challenge of violent crime

Posted By on Thu, Jul 6, 2017 at 10:20 PM

Mayor Mitch Landrieu delivered his 2017 State of the City at the Civic Theatre July 6.
  • Mayor Mitch Landrieu delivered his 2017 State of the City at the Civic Theatre July 6.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu ended his final State of the City address with a familiar phrase, one that he's used at the end of previous State of the City speeches and throughout his terms as mayor of New Orleans; "Let's get back to work."

Each State of the City has revisited the previous year of his administration — highlighting infrastructure investments, crime prevention, recreation, homelessness and affordable housing, among other issues — and glimpsed his platform in the coming months and years ahead.

But for his final State of the City before he leaves office in 2018, Landrieu started from the beginning, then landed squarely at the future as New Orleans prepares to elect his successor.

Landrieu's speech at the Civic Theatre July 6 spanned the disarray and $97 million deficit he inherited in 2010 to the balanced budgets, job programs, hospitals, recreation centers, playgrounds and road projects in the years that followed — as well as the city's two ongoing "existential and immediate threats": climate change and violent crime.

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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

That stinks: Sweet Crude's tour bus burgled in San Francisco

Posted By on Tue, Jun 27, 2017 at 9:21 PM

Sweet Crude.
  • Sweet Crude.

Louisiana band Sweet Crude, currently on a summer tour of the West and East Coast, has had their summer become a bummer. According to posts on the band's Facebook page, their tour van was burgled yesterday while the band was taking in a San Francisco Giants game, and members lost laptops, gear, some instruments, prescription medications and all their luggage.

"We are all safe and have our phones and are so glad to be able to do what we do: play music on the road," wrote Sweet Crude member Sam Craft.

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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Editorial: 'Smart on crime' one of the successes of the 2017 Louisiana legislative session

Posted By on Thu, Jun 22, 2017 at 2:41 PM

State Rep. Joe Marino, I-Gretna (right). - SARAH GAMARD | MANSHIP SCHOOL NEWS SERVICE
  • State Rep. Joe Marino, I-Gretna (right).
The 2017 regular legislative session has been widely — and rightly — criticized for its failure to produce long-term fiscal reform. Yet, despite lawmakers’ failure to work together on fiscal issues, they showed true bipartisanship in succeeding on another, equally important front: criminal justice reform. The long-term impact of that success cannot be overstated.

After decades of pretending to be “tough on crime,” lawmakers finally enacted policies that reflect what enlightened law enforcement leaders have known all along: we cannot jail our way to safety. Spurred by objective data from the Pew Charitable Trust, a yearlong study by the bipartisan Louisiana Justice Reinvestment Task Force, and critical support from conservative as well as progressive voices across the state, lawmakers passed a package of 10 bills that significantly overhaul Louisiana’s sentencing, probation, parole and re-entry laws.

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