Inclement weather has closed several ramps to / from Interstate 20 in the Ouachita Parish area- most are in the Monroe area, with several in the West Monroe area.
Two distinct issues affect jails nationwide: recidivism and contraband. Recidivism costs taxpayers who have to house inmates who have already been through the criminal justice system, in many cases, several times before. Contraband, such as illegal drugs, transforms a normally controlled environment into an unstable one, causing safety issues for guards and inmates alike.
The Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office is addressing these issues with it’s new video-based visitation system at the Ouachita Correctional Center. This system will offer inmates the opportunity to visit with family and friends on a more frequent basis. Studies have shown that more flexible visitation policies can cause a decrease in recidivism. The system will also decrease the number of visitors onto the OCC compound, thereby decreasing the chance of contraband being smuggled in.
This web-based system is an alternative available for those who would rather visit from their home or office, as opposed to driving to the OCC compound and waiting in line twice a month. Family and friends can find the link at OPSO.NET. Here they will receive a user friendly tutorial, concerning the rules, software requirements, and how to schedule a visit. On the day of the visit, the monitor located in the inmate living area will flash to notify the inmate that a visit has been scheduled.
Software Note: The system is designed to be compatible with available software. However, should you encounter a problem, follow the instructions above and read the information outlining software requirements to correct the issue.
Remote visits cost $9 for a 20 minute visit; future plans will allow for free on-site video-based visits from a building located at the front gate.
The West Monroe Police Department is receiving numerous phone calls about a telephone billing scam. These individuals are convincing consumers they are late on a utility bill and will be turned off within the day.
The consumers are then given an account number and instructed to get a money gram or similar manor of payment.
- Do not give any numbers over the phone.
- Do not buy any type of money gram or gift cards that can be transferred immediately or by phone.
These perpetrators are usually outside the legal jurisdiction of the United States.
If you have been scammed, go to WWW.IC3.GOV and fill in the online form.
Want to see what exactly the text of a law or ordinance is?
Check our ‘Links‘ page to see our recommended sites that provide you with the best information about a parish or city ordinance. The Municode website is the most accurate repository that keeps the latest and most accurate legal text available.
There are direct links to the City of Monroe ordinances and Ouachita Parish laws on this page, but you can also view other states and cities.
From LSP – Troop F / G News Release
The National Weather Service in Shreveport has issued a Winter Storm Warning for much of northern Louisiana which is in effect from 9 p.m. this evening to 6 p.m. Monday. Freezing precipitation including rain, sleet and snow is anticipated for most parts of the Troop F and G.
Ice with freezing rain will be possible late tonight and into tomorrow. There is a possibility of some accumulation of winter precipitation on roadways in Northern Louisiana especially on elevated surfaces such as bridges and overpasses. Motorists are advised to use caution when traveling over these elevated roadways. DOTD crews will be out throughout the night treating roadways and monitoring conditions. A closure of some roadways is possible.
The Louisiana State Police urges motorists to keep abreast of the latest weather and travel conditions before deciding whether a trip is necessary as rain or sleet can cause bridges and overpasses to ice quickly, particularly in the evening and early morning hours if temperatures are below or near the freezing mark. If conditions deteriorate, motorists are encouraged to refrain from driving until conditions improve. If ice accumulates on bridges or overpasses, the Louisiana State Police will work closely with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development to take appropriate measures.
Motorists are reminded to drive responsibly and be prepared for the possibility of slippery driving conditions.
The Louisiana State Police offers the following winter weather driving tips:
- Reduce speed
- Allow extra time to reach your destination
- Allow extra space between vehicles
- Do not drive using the cruise control in icy conditions
- Anticipate stops (such as stop signs and traffic signals) and brake gently while stopping
- If you encounter a skid, take your foot off accelerator and steer into the skid until you regain control
- Use low beam headlights if it is raining or sleeting
- Ensure all vehicle occupants are properly restrained
If you experience difficulties or witness hazardous situations while on the highway, you may notify the nearest State Police Troop office by dialing *LSP (*577) from your cell phone or contact your local law enforcement agency.
The Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division investigated a complaint in reference to an alleged heavy equipment sales scheme in October 2014.
Larry Ralph Thumann, owner of Valt Equipment, Splendora, TX told the Rapides Parish victim he had a Komatsu Rock Crusher for sale for $93,000.00 in September 2014. The victim met with Thumann to view the equipment in Beaumont, TX and the victim agreed to the purchase price.
On September 30th, the victim wired transferred the money to Thumann’s Valt Equipment bank account, expecting delivery of the equipment on or about October 6th , 2014. The victim became suspicious after Thumann did not deliver the equipment on the promised date and contacted Thumann several times over the course of three weeks inquiring why the rock crusher was not delivered as promised.
Thumann told the victim various reasons why he had not delivered the rock crusher, none of which were legitimate. The victim then filed a report with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office in late October.
During the investigation, Detectives learned that the rock crusher was actually owned by a Houston, TX based company. The rock crusher was in fact for sale and Thumann was allegedly purchasing the equipment from the company for $75,000.00, but the company never received payment.
Additional evidence was obtained and on November 3rd , 2014 sufficient probable was developed to grant an arrest warrant on Thumann for Theft over $25,000.
With the assistance of the Montgomery County, TX Sheriff’s Office, Thumann was arrested as a Louisiana fugitive on November 18th in Texas. Thumann contested extradition after his arrest but was extradited to Rapides Parish on February 19, 2015 where he was booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center for Theft over $25,000, Illegal Transmission of Monetary Funds (Louisiana’s wire fraud law) and Contempt of Court.
Thumann‘s bond is $45,000 and he is currently incarcerated in the Rapides Parish Detention Center awaiting extradition back to Texas for felony charges unrelated to this investigation.
Through their investigation, Detectives learned Thumann was arrested for similar schemes in Texas in 2012 and 2013.
“This is one of those cases where the suspect could have very easily gotten away with this crime had it not been for some solid police work” said Sheriff William Earl Hilton. “I want to commend the work of our Criminal Investigation Division Financial Crimes Unit in this very complex case. I also want to thank the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office for their quick response in arresting this suspect and the Rapides Parish District Attorney’s Office for their assistance in the extradition process. Just because the suspect is out of state does not mean they are out of our reach. Working closely with the other agencies involved is key to solving this crime.”
Stacie Brown Wilson is wanted by the Union Parish Sheriff’s Office and Crime Stoppers of Union Parish for the offense of Felony Theft.
Crime Stoppers will pay a cash reward for any information that leads to her arrest.
If you have any information regarding her location, call Crime Stoppers of Union Parish at 318-368-9679.
Wilson is known to frequent the Sterlington, Louisiana area.
On 2-19-15, at approximately 2:57am, a suspicious black male walked into the garage of a residence at 2649 Blue Water Lane.
The residents at this location have motion detection alarms and deer cameras set up. When the unknown black male approached the carport, the motion alarm sounded and he ran off.
At of the time of this BOLO, no other residences have reported thefts or burglaries in that area.
Monroe Police Department Detective Jeremy Kent (318) 329-2521) is seeking any information the public may have in identifying the subject in this image.
At of this time, there are no charges for this person.
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Two siblings, Mark Hayes and Melissa Hayes, have had arrest warrants issued for their alleged involvement in a February 13th double-homicide; both subjects are considered armed and dangerous.
Mark Hayes, black male, age 29, is approximately 5′ 9″, 150lbs, and is charged with two counts of First Degree Murder.
Melissa Hayes, black female, age 24, is approximately 5′ 2″, 130lbs, and is charged with one count of First Degree Murder.
Anyone with information about either of these subjects is asked to contact the Alexandria Police Investigation Division at 318-441-6416.
Also, you may call CrimeStoppers anonymously at 318-443-7867; you may qualify for a reward of up to $2,500.