APSO seeking whereabouts of man wanted for sexual battery

The Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s assistance in locating 33-year-old Gregory Johnson, wanted for sexual battery.

On Tuesday, Aug. 30, Johnson approached a victim at the Winn-Dixie grocery store located on Airline Highway in Prairieville and asked the victim for directions. Johnson then began groping the victim.

He was last seen wearing a black shirt with red writing, dark pants and red tennis shoes and driving a black Dodge Challenger with tinted windows.

Johnson, who has a lengthy criminal history and is a convicted felon, is also wanted by the Baton Rouge Police Department for second-degree rape.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Gregory Johnson is urged to contact the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office at (225) 621-4636 or by texting 847411 to the anonymous tip line from any cellular device or Crime Stoppers at (225) 344-STOP (7867). To be eligible for a cash reward, you must contact Crime Stoppers immediately. 

Sorrento councilman pleads not guilty to stealing

Sorrento Councilman Randy Anny pleaded not guilty to charges of theft and forgery in a $77,500 Sorrento sewer project that was paid for but never completed.

Anny was indicted by an Ascension Parish grand jury in June on charges of theft of the $77,500, one count of malfeasance in office, three counts of forgery and one count of profit-splitting on the public sewer project.

The plea was entered on Thursday in the 23rd Judicial District Court in Gonzales. A pretrial hearing in the case is scheduled for Nov. 28.

Prairieville man sentenced on animal cruelty charge

On Sept. 12, Jamari Jackson, age 33, of 41270 Merritt Evans Road, Prairieville, appeared in court for sentencing on the charge of aggravated cruelty to animals after brutally beating a dog in June 2014. The Honorable Judge Jason Verdigets ordered that Jackson be committed to the Louisiana Department of Corrections for a period of five years at hard labor with credit for time served.

Jackson was found guilty to the charges by an Ascension Parish jury on July 13. He was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Joni Buquoi and Amy Colby with the Honorable Judge Jason Verdigets presiding over the matter.

On June 14, 2014, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to Jackson's Prairieville residence regarding an animal cruelty complaint called in by a woman. The complainant advised that she had just witnessed an individual who she was able to positively identify as Jamari Jackson beating a dog with a baseball bat. Upon the arrival, deputies were advised by witnesses of the gruesome scene. Deputies as well as independent witnesses described the dog as lifeless and full of blood. Deputies were able to hear the dog whimpering and struggling to breathe. When questioned about the condition of the dog, Jackson advised deputies that the dog had gotten stuck in a barbed wire fence. Deputies were able to locate the bat described by the complainant inside of Jackson’s residence. Jackson was arrested and transported to the Ascension Parish Detention Center where he was booked for Aggravated Cruelty to Animals. Approximately two days later, the dog succumbed to her injuries.

During the trial, Jackson testified that after discovering the dog stuck in a barbed wire fence, he used the bat to knock her unconscious so she would be relaxed. Three doctors classified as experts in veterinary medicine and veterinary pathology testified that the injuries sustained by the dog were from blunt force trauma which caused traumatic injury to the brain sufficient to cause death, not a barbed wire fence. Jurors deliberated for just over an hour before returning a guilty verdict.

Donaldsonville man arrested on rape and sexual battery charges

BELLE ROSE – Assumption Parish Sheriff Leland Falcon reports the Aug. 27 arrest of Milton LeBlanc, 49, of 414 St. Vincent St., Donaldsonville, on charges that he committed sexual crimes upon a child under 12-years-old.

On Aug. 27, Assumption Parish Sheriff’s deputies and detectives investigated an alleged rape that occurred in the Belle Rose area. LeBlanc is accused of raping and committing sexual battery upon the victim on multiple occasions. Based on investigative work, detectives secured an arrest warrant on LeBlanc for two counts of first degree rape and two counts of sexual battery.

LeBlanc was incarcerated in the parish jail in lieu of a $500,000 bond.

Thibodaux man sentenced to 10 years on drug charge

On Sept. 6, Judge Jessie LeBlanc ordered that Jordan Cheatham, 31, of Thibodaux, be committed to the Louisiana Department of Corrections for a period of 10 years at hard labor with credit for time served on a drug count stemming from an Aug. 2012 arrest. 

On May 5, Cheatham pleaded guilty to Possession with Intent to Distribute a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance. Cheatham was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Thomas Daigle. Per Judge LeBlanc, sentencing was deferred pending a pre-sentence investigation. Cheatham, who was awaiting trial, changed his plea to guilty just prior to the start of a jury trial.

On Aug. 8, 2012 while working in the Labadieville area, Assumption Parish Sheriff’s Office narcotics detectives initiated a traffic stop on a 2007 Dodge Charger at the intersection of La. 1 and Pine St. Detectives observed Cheatham, the driver of the vehicle, cross the center line of the roadway and fail to come to a complete stop at a stop sign. Upon exiting the vehicle, detectives said Cheatham appeared to be nervous and was sweating.

Upon being denied consent to search the vehicle, a K-9 Unit was dispatched. The K-9 conducted an open air sniff of the outside of the vehicle and made a positive alert for narcotics. Detectives then began searching the interior of the vehicle and obtained a large Ziploc bag containing multiple plastic baggies containing suspected marijuana packaged for sale. Several other small packaged amounts of marijuana were located throughout the vehicle.

Cheatham was arrested and transported to the Assumption Parish Detention Center and booked on the charge of Possession with Intent to Distribute a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance. Upon his sentencing on Sept. 6, Judge LeBlanc ordered that three years of the imposed 10 year sentence be suspended, and upon release, Cheatham is to be placed on supervised probation for a period of three years.

Guilty Pleas

During the week of Sept. 5 to Sept. 9, the following defendants pleaded guilty to various charges and were sentenced in the 23rd Judicial District Court, Parishes of Ascension and St. James. Assumption Parish had no court news to report this week.

Ascension Parish

Joni Cooley, 11191 River Highlands, St. Amant, age 40, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance and was sentenced to 12 months with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served.

Tracie Bourgeois, 14248 Garcon Road, Gonzales, age 46, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance and was sentenced to 18 months with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on 18 months supervised probation.

Robert Stafford, 41302 Cannon Road, Gonzales, age 40, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance, and Simple Burglary. On the charge of Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, the defendant was sentenced to 10 years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. On the charge of Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance, the defendant was sentenced to 10 years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. On the charge of Simple Burglary, the defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. All of the imposed sentences are to run consecutive to one another. It was ordered that the imposed sentences are to be suspended, and the defendant is to be placed on five years supervised probation.

Jason LeBlanc, 8340 Ruby St., Sorrento, age 43, pleaded guilty to Illegal Use of a Controlled Dangerous Substance in the Presence of Minors and Possession with Intent to Distribute a Schedule IV Controlled Dangerous Substance. The defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on three years supervised probation.

Andre Fisher, 18040 Manning Drive, Prairieville, age 21, pleaded guilty to Driving Under Suspension, Possession of Marijuana or Synthetic Cannabinoids 1st Offense, and Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance. The defendant was sentenced to 36 months with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on 36 months supervised probation.

Karla Peters, 38556 Ruby Drive, Gonzales, age 29, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule IV Controlled Dangerous Substance, and was sentenced to 18 months with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on 18 months supervised probation.

Justin Evans, 39327 Catoire Lane, Prairieville, age 28, pleaded guilty to Theft of Good Valued at $1500 or more, Simple Burglary of an Inhabited Dwelling, and Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance (two counts). On the charge of Theft of Goods Valued at $1500 or More, the defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. On the charge of Simple Burglary of an Inhabited Dwelling, the defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. On the charge of Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, the defendant was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served on each count. It was ordered that all of the imposed sentences are to run concurrent with one another.

Lionel Santillan, 3909 Little Creed Drive, Gonzales, age 22, pled guilty to Unauthorized Use of a Moveable and Theft Valued at Less than $750. The defendant was sentenced to 179 day with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on one year supervised probation.

Lisa Manzella, 13604 LeBlanc Road, Gonzales, age 48, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, and was sentenced to four years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on four years supervised probation.

Ahmad Said, 43027 Cypress Bend, St. Amant, age 26, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance and Theft Valued at less than $750. The defendant was sentenced to seven years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served. It was ordered that the defendant must serve two years of the imposed sentence, and the remaining five years are to be suspended. Upon release, the defendant is to be placed on five years supervised probation.

Paul Lecompte, 4358 La. 56, Houma, age 53, pleaded guilty to Resisting an Officer, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Possession of a Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substance, and Attempted Obstruction of Justice. The defendant was sentenced to five years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on five years supervised probation.

The above cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Charles “Chuck” Long and Lindsey Manda. Presiding over these matters was the Honorable Judge Tess Stromberg.

St. James Parish

Leonard Harris, 1989 Mears Lane, Lutcher, age 34, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Legend Drug without Prescription or Order (two counts), Possession of a Schedule IV Controlled Dangerous Substance, and Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance. The defendant was sentenced to five year with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served on each count, to run concurrent with one another. It was ordered that the imposed sentence is to be suspended, and the defendant is to be placed on five years supervised probation.

Kendrick Jones, 2616 E Lebray St., Lutcher, age 18, pleaded guilty to Theft over $5,000 but Less than $25,000. The defendant was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served, to be suspended, and placed on three years supervised probation.

Cowan Tassin, Sr., 247 Chestnut St., Mount Airy, age 33, pleaded guilty to Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance, and was sentenced to three years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served.

The above cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Bruce Mohon and Sara Clarke. Presiding over these matters were the Honorable Judge Alvin Turner Jr. and the Honorable Judge Thomas Kliebert.