Archive for the ‘News & Cases’ Category

MOCK TRIAL TEACHES STUDENTS LESSON ON LAW IN DA’S 15TH YEAR OF PROJECT LEAD

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016

Students from Boothville-Venice Elementary, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Phoenix Elementary School, and South Plaquemines Elementary, learned about the judicial system by staging a mock trial involving a fictitious character, Johnny Smith, and his crime of Bringing Drugs On School Grounds.

The trials placed students in the shoes of the defendant, defense attorneys, prosecutor, witnesses, victim, bailiff, court reporter and jurors. Presiding over the mock trials were: 4th Circuit Court of Appeal Judge Joy Lobrano, Retired 4th Circuit Court of Appeal Judge Michael Kirby and 25th Judicial District Court Judge Kevin Conner. The program was started in the year 2000 and continued by District Attorney Charles Ballay.

The goal of the program, Project L. E. A. D., is designed to help students recognize and analyze potential consequences of the difficult decisions students face during adolescence and beyond. By focusing on peer pressure, responsibility, self-respect, self-control and self-esteem, Project L. E. A. D. gives students the tools necessary to avoid many of the pitfalls and traps that often lead to delinquent conduct and criminal activity.

The L. E. A. D. (Legal Enrichment And Decision – making) curriculum includes fact patterns in which the characters approach various moral and legal crossroads. These are designed to illustrate how easy it can sometimes be to step over the line without even being aware of it. These fact patterns provide an interesting basis for class discussion. Students read aloud the parts in these scenarios, thus preparing for the mock trial which is the culmination of the L. E. A. D. lessons.

Project L.E.A.D. is taught to every 6th grader in our parish by one of the five assistant district attorneys in the D. A.’s Office: 1st Assistant Robert White, Joseph Roberts, Jerry Lobrano, Mary Touzet, and Ned McGowan. Belle Chasse Middle School is taught in the Fall semester while Phoenix, Boothville, South Plaquemines, and OLPH are taught in the Spring. Topics included The Juvenile Justice System, Respecting Others, Drinking and Driving, Animal Cruelty, Dating Violence, BULLYING, Four Wheeling, Truancy, and Deterring Peer Pressure.

Project LEAD is supported with funds obtained through the Plaquemines Parish District Attorney’s discretionary funds.

SB 250 – Protecting the Public While Protecting Privacy

Saturday, June 6th, 2015

This is posted from the Louisiana District Attorney Association.

Click Here to download the PDF

Click Here to download the PDF

OFFICIAL RELEASE – Grand Jury Proceedings Plaquemines Parish

Monday, June 1st, 2015

A Grand Jury session was convened in Plaquemines Parish on Wednesday, May 27, 2015 and District Attorney Charles Ballay reports that indictments were returned against Calendria Rochell Houston, 26 year old female, and her husband, Xavier Montrex Houston, a 26 year old male, a Seaman in the Navy Reserve, who have been living on the naval air station in Belle
Chasse. Read the Full Release at the link below.

News_Release_5-27-2015_Grand_Jury

NOTICE – New Office Location

Friday, October 31st, 2014

The Plaquemines Parish District Attorney’s Office at 301 A Main Street, Belle Chasse has moved to 102 Avenue G, Belle Chasse (old Engineers and Permit building). However our Juvenile office will remain on second floor of Annex Building. Should you have any questions please call our office at 504-297-5146.

Senior Day 2014

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

5th Annual Senior Citizen Day

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

District Attorney Charles J. Ballay presents the Plaquemines Parish 5th Annual Senior Citizen’ Day on Tuesday April 8, 2014 from 9am – 1:00 pm at Belle Chasse Auditorium – 8393 Highway 23, Belle Chasse, LA 70037.

Click Here to download the PDF

Click Here to download the PDF

Grand Jury held with indictments for Wyatt Evans and Thomas Hunter

Friday, February 21st, 2014

2-20-2014 — A grand jury was held in Plaquemines Parish on Wednesday February 19, 2014 A Grand Jury session was held in Plaquemines Parish on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 and District Attorney Charles Ballay reports the following indictments were returned:

Wyatt Evans, 18 year old who resides in Port Sulphur, LA, was indicted for Negligent Homicide. This matter involved the shooting death of Galen Scott, a classmate of Evans, who was shot while hog hunting in Nairn. Evans is presently out of jail on a $50,000 bond, with an arraignment of March 10, 2014, before Judge Conner.

Thomas Hunter, a 16 year old who resides in Belle Chasse, LA, was indicted for Aggravated Rape. This crime involved Hunter having sexual intercourse with a 12 year old girl whom he had received nude pictures of by text and then threatened to expose her if she failed to have sex with him. Due to the victim’s age and the type of offense her name is not being disclosed.

Hunter is presently in jail with a $500,000 bond and his arraignment is set for February 24, 2014 before Judge Clement.

See full PDF of this release below:

Click Here to download the PDF

Click Here to download the PDF

Jury Trial of John Edward Rivers, Sr. 2nd Degree Murder charge

Friday, February 7th, 2014

1-16-2014 – District Attorney Charles Ballay announces that a Plaquemines Parish jury returned a verdict of guilty as charged in the 2nd degree murder trial of John Edward Rivers, Sr., age 54, who was a resident of Gretna.

The case was tried by before Judge Michael Clement by Assistant DA Edward McGowan and 1st Assistant DA Robert White. A conviction of 2nd Degree Murder requires a sentence of life in prison without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence. Sentencing is set for February 5th at 1:30 before Judge Clement.

Please read the full press release here:

Click Here to download the PDF

Click Here to download the PDF

PLAQUEMINES PARISH DISTRICT ATTORNEY CONTINUES HIS SUPPORY OF LDWF ENFORCEMENT

Friday, November 8th, 2013

BY: SGT. ADAM YOUNG

The Plaquemines parish District Attorneys Office has a long standing tradition with the agents that work one the largest parishes in Louisiana enforcing fish and game laws. In past years agents have received donated items to assist in their enforcement duties. Agents have received night vision scopes, high-powered flashlights, and even two surface drive boats to help agents gain access to possible fish and game violators.

In July of 2013 that tradition continued when District Attorney Charles Ballay purchased the agents of Plaquemines parish three GoPro Hero 3 cameras for immediate use in the field. DA Ballay said his office is always looking for ways to help law enforcement gather evidence for protecting our citizens and resources.

The cameras have already been used in the field in the apprehension of oyster thieves, crab trap theft cases, and most recently a bait duck pond case in Venice where four men were cited for hunting migratory game birds over bait, and shooting over the limit of migratory game birds. Having these violations on video and available for viewing in court will be an added advantage for successful prosecution. In addition, agents want to use the cameras for boat accident reconstruction assistance when complicated accidents arise.

On behalf of all the agents working Plaquemines parish we thank Charles Ballay once again for his support of our profession with not only stellar prosecution of our cases, but by also providing us with equipment to help us perform our jobs safer and better.

Ms. Lillie Williams receives restitution check from DA Charles Ballay and Asst DA Joe Roberts

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Charles Ballay with Lillie Williams

Pictured is Ms. Lillie Williams receiving a check on August 6, 2013 for $4,000.00 as restitution from Charles Ballay, District Attorney of Plaquemines Parish, and Joe Roberts, Asst. D.A.

Ms. Williams was the victim in the case of State vs Cornelius Washington that resulted in a conviction with the sentence requiring restitution to her. Mr. Washington, a contractor, was prosecuted under La. R.S. 14:67.21.B. (1) that prohibits theft of assets of an aged person. Washington had taken advantage of Ms. Williams’ age and situation.

Since taking office in 2009 D.A. Ballay has obtained over half a million dollars in restitution payments for victims.