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The Best and the Worst of the Week 

The Tipitina's Foundation
and the musicians, donors and organizers who held Tipitina's 'Instruments A'Comin' benefit concert and silent auction last week raised about $55,000 at the ever-growing fourth annual event to buy instruments for four public school music departments. A matching grant from Whitney National Bank raised the final take to $100,000-plus, which New Orleans Music Exchange shop owner Jimmy Glickman will use to buy instruments at wholesale prices.

Judy Watts,
president and CEO of the statewide advocacy agency Agenda for Children, has won the Florette Angel Memorial Child Advocacy Award, presented by Voices for America's Children. The national nonprofit called Watts a tireless advocate who has championed the needs of children and defended their best interests in the political arena, 'even when those positions may not have been popular.' Watts will receive the award in Seattle next month.

Norman Van Court of Arabi,
who runs the boxing program for the St. Bernard Parish Recreation Department, used his fighting skills in a decidedly unsportsmanlike manner when he allegedly punched a Kenner dentist 'several times in the face,' according to a sheriff's office report. The report says Van Court assaulted Dr. Terry Billings in his office last week after becoming angry at the way Billings handled his son during a dental exam. Van Court was booked with felony second-degree battery.

Sen. Charles D. Jones,
D-Monroe, committed a brazen conflict of interest in his dual roles as a private attorney and state senator when he introduced a bill to help his client -- ex-Ouachita Parish Police Jury president Daryll Berry. State law says Berry, who copped a plea to avoid more serious charges of public bribery, must leave public office because of his new status as a felon. Jones' bill, filed right after the plea deal, would amend current law to allow Berry to keep his job.


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