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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

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News in Brief- October 9, 2019

News in Brief- October 9, 2019

Louisiana factory suddenly lays off 376 employees

LAPLACE, La. (AP) — A Louisiana steel mill unexpectedly laid off 376 employees and says the factory will shut down in November.

News outlets report workers at Bayou Steel Group were shocked on Monday when the factory announced the layoffs and shutdown. The factory is St. John the Baptist Parish's largest employer.

A company letter to parish officials says unforeseen circumstances and lack of financing forced the layoffs and closure. But Gov. John Bel Edwards says the Trump administration's trade war with China made the factory vulnerable to increased steel tariffs.

Parish President Natalie Robottom says the parish will work with the Louisiana Workforce Commission to help the workers find new jobs.


Judge: Mom was the 'monster' in dead toddler's life

GRETNA, La. (AP) — A judge told a Louisiana woman she was the "monster" in her toddler son's life, and sentenced her to life in prison for killing the 2-year-old, 15-pound boy.

The Jefferson Parish District Attorney's Office says in a news release that Judge Danyelle Taylor sentenced 29-year-old Twyena Thomas on Monday, the two-year anniversary of Chase Thomas' death.

A jury convicted Thomas in August of second-degree murder, which carries a mandatory life sentence.

The judge said she wished she could do more than sentence Thomas to life in prison.

She also said the child's weight, broken skull, scars and bruises showed that he died scared of a "monster" — his mother.

She read the statement to Thomas and gave her notes to district attorney's spokesman Paul Purpura, who emailed them to reporters.


Endymion announces entertainment lineup for 2020 gala

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — One of New Orleans' major Mardi Gras krewes has announced the entertainment lineup for its 2020 extravaganza.

The Krewe of Endymion says the event will be headlined by country superstar Tim McGraw. Also scheduled to perform are Styx, Train and area favorites Groovy 7 and The Wise Guys.

Endymion's theme this year is "Endymion's Historic Dynasties." The parade rolls on the streets of New Orleans on Saturday, Feb. 22 — the weekend before Fat Tuesday.

The krewe annually throws a big party after the parade, usually in the Superdome. But the 2020 event will be held in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center because of construction at the Superdome.


USDA buys flood-prone Louisiana homes for wetlands project

GONZALES, La. (AP) — The federal government has bought out an entire flood-prone neighborhood in Louisiana, prompting all its residents to move to higher ground.

News outlets report the agency U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Emergency Watershed Protection Program financed the buyouts on along Silverleaf Street in Gonzales, which was carved out of a wetland in the 1980s and has frequently flooded ever since.

Chief city engineer Jackie Baumann says the federal agency is buying the homes at pre-flood market value, and Restore Louisiana is offering to make up shortfalls in the purchasing price for some residents, as long as their next home isn’t in a flood zone.

The 2017 offer required all 41 residents to agree to the deal, and the last resident agreed last month, enabling the government to restore the wetland.


Lutcher man dies in crash Sunday morning in Larose

LAROSE, La. – Shortly before 6:30 Sunday morning, Troopers with Troop C began investigating a fatality crash involving a motorcycle on LA 308 near the T-Bois Bridge that took the life of 31-year-old Brennan Louque.

The preliminary investigation revealed Louque was traveling south on LA 308 on a 2014 Suzuki motorcycle at a high rate of speed. He approached the intersection at the T-Bois Bridge where traffic was stopped for a red light. For unknown reasons, Louque failed to stop and struck a boat and trailer that was being towed by a 2010 Ford F-250. It was being driven by 63-year-old Randy Dominique of Gheens.

Louque was transported to Lady of the Sea Hospital by ambulance where he was pronounced deceased. He was wearing a DOT approved helmet during the crash. Impairment is unknown at this time and a standard toxicology report is pending. Dominique was not injured and was restrained during the crash. He provided a breath sample which showed no alcohol present.


Louisiana fire captain slips and falls into water, dies

COCODRIE, La. (AP) — Authorities in Louisiana say a fire captain has died of an apparent drowning near the Gulf Coast.

News outlets report 45-year-old Bryan Bozeman was cleaning fish when he slipped and fell into the water near Cocodrie on Saturday night.

Terrebonne Parish Sheriff Jerry Larpenter says family members pulled Bozeman from the water and CPR was being administered when deputies arrived. Bozeman was taken to a hospital where he died.

Bozeman had been a captain with the Baton Rouge Fire Department. The department said on Facebook that he was "full of life and loved helping others." He was off-duty at the time of the fall.