Former Lafourche Resident Facing Local Charges Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison in Nebraska

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced a former Lafourche Parish resident facing charges of aggravated incest and sexual battery has been sentenced to at least 40 years in prison in Nebraska. William Patrick Gilliam, 45, of Duenweg, Missouri, was charged and sentenced in connection to an investigation by Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office detectives.

As previously released, juvenile detectives began an investigation in May 2017 after receiving a complaint about a family member having been sexually abused by Gilliam over the course of several years. The initial incident occurred approximately six years ago in Raceland, where Gilliam resided at the time. Through investigation, detectives learned Gilliam had inappropriate sexual contact with the victim in Lafourche Parish and other jurisdictions, including Lancaster County in Nebraska. Detectives believe the juvenile is the sole victim of Gilliam’s abuse. Detectives obtained warrants for Gilliam’s arrest for Aggravated Incest and Sexual Battery (Forcible Fondling). In late May, detectives learned Gilliam was in custody in Jasper County in Missouri where he also faced additional charges.

On Monday, May 14, after pleading guilty to First Degree Sexual Assault of a Child in Lancaster County, Nebraska, Gilliam was sentenced to no less than 40 years in prison (and no more than 50 years) with a mandatory 15-year minimum.

He still faces the aforementioned charges in Missouri and Louisiana.

William Gilliam
William Gilliam

Seat Belt Violation Leads to Drug Bust Involving Fugitive

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced a traffic stop for a seat belt violation led investigators to discovery of a pound of marijuana, cocaine and over $2,000 in cash. Ronald Johnson, 31, of Labadieville was charged in the incident, and he was found to be a fugitive of Assumption Parish as well.

At around 6:45 p.m. on Sunday, May 13, narcotics agents conducted a traffic stop on Talbot Avenue in Thibodaux due to a seat belt violation. Agents identified the driver as Ronald Johnson and found him to have a suspended license, as well as active warrants for Assumption Parish and the City of Thibodaux. Johnson was immediately taken into custody. Agents also detected a strong odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle. A K-9 deputy responded to the scene and alerted to the possible presence of narcotics inside the vehicle. During a subsequent search of the vehicle, agents recovered a large sealed bag containing approximately one pound of suspected marijuana, as well as a small bag of marijuana, and a marijuana cigar. They also discovered approximately 64 grams of suspected cocaine, drug paraphernalia, and $2,113 in cash.

Johnson was charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana and Cocaine, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and no seat belt. His bond on the Lafourche Parish charges is set at $21,025. Per the contempt warrant for the City of Thibodaux, he has been ordered to serve 30 days in jail for failure to appear in court for driving under suspension. He is also being held for Assumption Parish for charges including Obstruction of Justice, Hit and Run Driving, and violation of a no passing zone.

Ronald Johnson
Ronald Johnson

Free Hunter Education Classroom Courses Scheduled for June and July

The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office will host FREE Hunter Education Classroom Courses in June and July for anyone ages 10 or older.

The traditional “Classroom Course” is a two-day course covering topics such as hunter responsibility and ethics, how firearms work and firearms safety, survival and first aid skills, firearm handling skills and hunting techniques, wildlife identification, game care, and information related to wildlife conservation and management.

The June classroom course will be offered Wednesday, June 20 through Thursday, June 21, 2018. The first day will be the classroom portion from 8am to 5pm at the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office Training Academy, located at 1300 Lynn Street in Thibodaux. The class will resume the following day from 8am to 11am at the LPSO Shooting Range located at 3451 Highway 182 in Raceland. CLICK HERE to register for this course.

The July classroom course will be offered Wednesday, July 25 through Thursday, July 26, 2018. The first day will be the classroom portion from 8am to 5pm at the Lafourche Fire District #3 Galliano Station, located at 17462 West Main Street in Galliano. The class will resume the following day from 8am to 11am at the LPSO Shooting Range located at 3451 Highway 182 in Raceland. CLICK HERE to register for this course.

 

Class size is limited. Advance registration is required. Participants must attend BOTH days of the class and pass a written and practical exam to be certified. Firearms and ammunition should NOT be brought to any of the courses, but snacks are permitted. For more information, or for assistance with online registration, call the LPSO Training Academy at (985) 387-4480 weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., or email Lieutenant Nolan Smith at nolan-smith@lpso.net.

*Anyone born after September 1, 1969, who wishes to obtain a hunting license in Louisiana, must successfully complete a hunter education course. Exceptions may be granted by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries for active or veteran members of the United States armed services, for any P.O.S.T.-certified law enforcement officer, or for persons who are under the direct supervision of a person 18-years or older who is already licensed and has taken the approved course. Exceptions must be applied for and approved by Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

Detention Center Inmate Found in Possession of Cocaine

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced an inmate at the Lafourche Parish Detention Center was charged after he was found in possession of cocaine. Lee Toups, 30, was booked on several new charges on Thursday.

Earlier this week, Inmate Toups was refusing to comply with commands from correctional officers. Growing suspicious of his behavior, and knowing Toups has a history of possessing contraband in jail, officers conducted a search of his person. During the search, a small bag containing a white powdery substance fell to the floor. Toups picked up the bag and attempted to swallow it. He then attempted to discard the bag in the shower, but correctional officers retrieved it. Toups claimed to have found the substance in another area of the jail, but he would not disclose how he knew of its presence. He indicated he had planned to sell it to other inmates.

Following an investigation, Toups was charged on Thursday, May 10 with Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine, Taking Contraband to a Penal Institution, and Obstruction of Justice. Toups was previously being held on charges including Aggravated Assault with a Firearm, Violation of a Protective Order, and Violation of Parole. His total bond on the charges is now set at $65,000, but he is also being held for Louisiana Probation and Parole.

The investigation is continuing into how the contraband entered the jail.

Lee Toups
Lee Toups

UPDATE: Anonymous Tip Leads to Capture of Suspect Wanted for Attempted Murder

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced an anonymous tip led to the arrest of a Raceland man wanted for attempted murder in connection with a shooting in February. Johnny Poindexter, 34, is now in custody after a tip submitted via Crime Stoppers Bayou Region led authorities to him.

Just after 4 p.m. on Friday, February 9, 2018, deputies responded to Brocato Lane in Raceland in reference to a man who was shot in the leg. Through investigation, investigators learned the victim was involved in a verbal altercation with a man, later identified as Poindexter, who accused the victim of nearly striking him while backing up his truck. During the argument, Poindexter pointed a handgun at the victim. The victim attempted to reach for the gun, but Poindexter backed away from the man and allegedly fired one round which struck the victim in the knee. The victim was treated at University Medical Center in New Orleans and released the following day. Poindexter was developed as the suspect, and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Then, earlier this week, an anonymous tip submitted to Crime Stoppers Bayou Region led authorities in Houma to Poindexter’s location, and he was taken into custody by the Houma Police Department. On Thursday, May 10, he was booked transferred to Lafourche Parish and booked into the Detention Center on charges including Attempted Second Degree Murder, Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon, and Contempt of Court. His bond is set at $310,000, and he is also being held for Louisiana Probation and Parole.

Johnny Poindexter
Johnny Poindexter

Sheriff Webre Announces Plans for “Click it or Ticket” Campaign

Sheriff Craig Webre announced the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office will join other local law enforcement agencies in participating in the Click-It or Ticket campaign which runs from May 14 through June 3, 2018. The campaign is coordinated and funded by the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Additional deputies will be assigned to saturated patrol efforts, and there will be multiple checkpoints held in conjunction with the campaign. Seat belt checkpoints will be conducted on Wednesday, May 16, Wednesday, May 23, and Thursday, May 31. Additionally, a DWI checkpoint will also be conducted on Thursday, May 31.

During the seat belt checkpoints, deputies will be checking motorists for seat belt and safety seat violations, as well as other violations such as expired inspection tags. During the DWI checkpoint, deputies will be looking for drivers who are possibly impaired while checking for other traffic safety issues, including but not limited to seat belt usage. Remember that Lafourche Parish is a “No Refusal” parish, meaning if a suspected drunk driver refuses a breathalyzer test, deputies will seek a search warrant to have that person’s blood tested.

Click It or Ticket is a seat belt enforcement campaign aimed at increasing the national seat belt usage rate. Every year during the annual Memorial Day Weekend holiday period, law enforcement agencies join forces day and night, from coast-to-coast, for an enforcement blitz that delivers a simple message: “click it or ticket.” According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved an estimated 14,668 lives in 2016. Many Americans understand the lifesaving value of the seat belt – the national use rate is at 90.1 percent – but nearly 27.5 million people still don’t buckle up.

Sheriff Craig Webre thanks citizens for buckling up and asks for patience and cooperation when passing through these checkpoints and for recognizing the importance of raising awareness for safety issues.

Thibodaux Man Arrested for Running a Woman Over in a Truck and Knocking Out Another

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced the arrest of Kip Leblanc, 20, of Thibodaux on May 8, 2018. Shortly after 2 p.m. on Tuesday, May 8, deputies responded to a disturbance on Choctaw Road in reference to a woman having been struck by a vehicle. Upon arrival, deputies observed bystanders providing aid to a woman in her 40s who was lying on the side of the road. Through investigation at the scene, deputies learned Leblanc had pushed the woman down and then rolled over her legs in a pickup truck as he fled the scene. She was later taken to the hospital for treatment. Deputies also learned that prior to that incident, he had punched another woman in the face, knocking her unconscious. This woman had been living with Leblanc for some time until recently. A short time later, deputies located Leblanc and he was arrested without incident. Leblanc was booked into the Lafourche Parish Detention Center on charges of Aggravated Second Degree Battery and Domestic Abuse Battery. He was released Tuesday evening after posting $52,500 bond, and he has been ordered to stay away from the victims.

Kip Leblanc
Kip Leblanc

Deputies Use Naloxone to Save Two Lives in Separate Incidents over the Weekend

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre reported deputies saved the lives of two men over the weekend by using naloxone. These are the third and fourth instances of deputies using naloxone to save lives in the past four months.

Just after 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 5, deputies found a man convulsing on the shoulder of LA Highway 1 in the 14000 block in Larose. As deputies made contact with the man, he was unresponsive and his breathing was becoming shallow. Deputies observed what appeared to be recent needle puncture wounds on his arms consistent with the use of illegal narcotics. Deputies administered naloxone using an auto-injector. A short time later, the man began to take deeper breaths and become more aware of his surroundings. He was transported to a local hospital for further treatment.

Then at around 4:40 p.m. on Sunday, May 6, deputies responded to a truck plaza in Gray in reference to a medical emergency. Upon arrival, the deputy found a man lying on the ground near the diesel pumps. During the encounter, deputies learned the man had taken heroin. Deputies learned the man had been talking to a friend when he began slurring his speech and collapsed. Deputies observed the man to have a very light pulse, shallow breaths, and constricted pupils. The deputy used a naloxone auto-injector. Within minutes, the man became alert and oriented, and he was transported to the hospital for further evaluation.

There have now been four instances in as many months wherein deputies have used naloxone to save an individual suffering an apparent opioid overdose. The previous incidents occurred in February and March 2018.

The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office received naloxone injectors from the Louisiana Department of Health’s Bureau of Emergency Medical Services, as well as vouchers for injectors from the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office. Deputies began undergoing training in December 2017, and many are now carrying agency-issued naloxone injectors to be able to provide immediate treatment in an emergency. Naloxone, which is sold under brand names such as Evzio and Narcan, is used as a temporary antidote to treat an opioid overdose in an emergency. Naloxone blocks or reverses the effects of opioid medication, including extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing, or loss of consciousness.

radkids Defense Courses Slated for June and July 2018

The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office will host radKIDS® Defense Courses for children in Thibodaux, Raceland, and Cut Off in June and July. These courses are designed for children 5 to 12 years of age and provide hands-on techniques giving children the tools they need to identify, avoid and if necessary, respond to danger. This is the 20th year the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office has offered these courses. Here is the schedule for the summer courses:

LPSO Law Enforcement Complex
1300 Lynn Street, Thibodaux
Monday, June 11 through Thursday, June 14
Deadline to Register: Friday, June 8

LPSO Range Facility
3451 Highway 182, Raceland

Tuesday, June 26 through Friday, June 29
Deadline to Register: Friday, June 22

Cut Off Youth Center
205 West 79th Street, Cut Off

Tuesday, July 10 through Friday, July 13
Deadline to Register: Friday, July 6

Times:

Children ages 5-7 attend daily morning sessions from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and an afternoon session is held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. for children ages 8-12. Parents can elect to drop their child(ren) off or stay for the two-hour program each day. Children are urged to wear comfortable clothing and tennis shoes.

Cost is $10 per child (for course materials).
Class size is limited, so advance registration is required.

To register, please download and complete the REGISTRATION FORM

Send completed form and $10 check (made payable to Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office) to:
Sergeant Carla Landry
P.O. Box 5608
Thibodaux, LA 70302

For more information, contact Sergeant Carla Landry at
(985) 449-4441 or carla-landry@lpso.net.

“RAD” stands for “Resist Aggression Defensively.” Through radKIDS® training, children become empowered and learn to replace fear, confusion, and panic in dangerous situations with confidence, personal safety skills, and self-esteem. It is an educational opportunity for children to learn personal safety strategies as they will receive special training in school safety, 911 calls, and general awareness. On the final day, they get to “fight off” an aggressor. The courses are taught by deputies of the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office certified to instruct the children in self-defense and awareness of possible dangerous situations. 

Lafourche Parish Councilman Charged with Simple Battery of Another Councilman

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre announced a Lafourche Parish Council member has been charged with Simple Battery of a fellow council member. James Bourgeois (age 51), the parish council representative of District #5, was charged following an investigation into the incident which occurred after a recent parish council meeting.

On Thursday, April 26, Jerry Lafont Jr., the parish council representative of District #8, filed a complaint with the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office in reference to an incident involving Bourgeois which occurred after the Lafourche Parish Council meeting on Tuesday, April 24. Lafont alleged Bourgeois bumped him in the chest and made statements indicating a desire to kill him. Lafont also submitted an audio recording of the incident for evidence. After listening to the recording and taking statements from several witnesses, including other Lafourche Parish Council members, detectives concluded there was probable cause to charge Bourgeois with Simple Battery in the incident.

On Friday, May 4, detectives made contact with Bourgeois and charged him with Simple Battery, a misdemeanor. He was issued a criminal summons in lieu of arrest.

Meanwhile, Lafont had filed for a Protective Order against Bourgeois, and Judge Steven Miller ordered Bourgeois to stay away from Lafont. Several initial attempts to serve Bourgeois with the order were unsuccessful. Bourgeois was eventually served on Monday, April 30 when he arrived for a Lafourche Parish Council meeting. Due to the order, Bourgeois was not allowed to remain at the meeting. On Thursday, May 3, Judge Miller extended the order until Friday, May 18, but added an exception which will allow Bourgeois to attend Lafourche Parish Council meetings.