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Wednesday, April 24, 2019

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Formal sentencing not yet scheduled in Lockport murder case

Formal sentencing not yet scheduled in Lockport murder case

Attorneys are still working on post-trial motions for a Houma man found guilty last year of the 2012 slayings of a Lockport woman and her two daughters.

A jury on Oct. 30 unanimously convicted David Brown, 39, of first-degree murder in the Nov. 4, 2012, deaths of 29-year-old Jacquelin, 7-year-old Gabriela and 1-year-old Izabela Nieves.

The jury found that Brown stabbed all three victims, sexually assaulted Jacquelin and Gabriela, and set the family's Lockport apartment on fire. On Nov. 1, the 12 jurors all decided Brown should get the death penalty for the crime.

New Orleans attorney Kerry Cuccia and his Capital Defense Project of Southeast Louisiana represented Brown during the guilt phase of the trial, but Brown decided to represent himself in the penalty phase.

The Capital Appeals Project of New Orleans is now working on the case. Project attorneys have been meeting monthly with prosecutors from the Lafourche Parish District Attorney's Office and state District Judge John LeBlanc, who presided over the trial.

"They're kind of trying to catch up," said First Assistant District Attorney Kristine Russell. "They need the opportunity to go through the transcripts of the trial. They were given from the judge and his staff four days' worth of the trial. ... We can't do anything until these attorneys go through the transcripts."

Russell said the hope is that the complete transcript will be ready by the next conference on March 8. Capital Appeals Project attorneys haven't indicated what motions they might file, she said.

It's also unclear how many more monthly meetings will take place or when Brown's formal sentencing will be.

Jury selection for the trial began Sept. 12 and lasted six weeks, with 2,000 potential jurors subpoenaed. The guilt phase of the trial began Oct. 24.

-- Staff Writer Bridget Mire can be reached at 448-7639 or Follow her on Twitter @bridget_mire