Hundreds gather at vigil for slain Baton Rouge officers

BATON ROUGE -- Hundreds of people gathered at a Baton Rouge church Thursday for a vigil honoring three law enforcement officers who were killed during a shootout with a lone gunman outside a convenience store.

Authorities say the gunman was targeting police officers in the July 17 shooting. The ambush happened during a period of racial tension in the city, following the death of a black man in a struggle with white police officers.

Rikenjaks looks to transform local entertainment scene

had a dream the other night that I had to eat my way out of a hamburger. I know, on the surface that sounds really pleasant — being trapped inside of quality beef patty and having to chew your way out of it.

I thought it was a great dream too, until I realized the burger was made by my uncle. He is without a doubt the planet’s worst cook. It’s almost as if he was born without taste buds.

Law officers undergo shooter training in Welsh schools

WELSH — Nearly two dozen officers from the Welsh Police Department and Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff’s Office took part in an eight-hour active-shooter exercise at Welsh Elementary and Welsh High schools Wednesday.

As part of the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training, offered by the Lake Charles Police Department, officers armed with air guns worked their way up and down the halls clearing classrooms and searching for a shooter.

Witnesses paint picture of abuse

Prosecutors rested their case Wednesday after painting a history of abuse in the trial of a Lake Charles man accused in the 2014 beating death of his girlfriend.

Mario Jamal Viltz, 36, is charged with the second-degree murder of A’Tasha LaShawn Hardy, 25. Hardy was found seriously injured in her Anita Drive home Oct. 30, 2014, and died from her injuries the next day.

McNeese fee deadlines approach

Students who have registered online for McNeese State University’s fall semester have until 4:30 p.m. Aug. 17 to pay fees. Fall classes begin Aug. 22.

Fall term bills are available online through the MyMcNeese Portal or their Banner Self-Service account. Go to www.mcneese.edu/payment to see payment policies.

Man accused of killing sister to stand trial

A Lake Charles man accused in the stabbing death of his sister has been found competent to stand trial, according to the Calcasieu Parish District Attorney’s Office.

Ernest Glover, 53, pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to a second-degree murder charge Wednesday, said Melissa Sonnier, a spokeswoman for the DA.

Authorities said he killed Barbara Glover Westcott, 50, of Kinder.

Shooter still at large in LC

Lake Charles police are still looking for the person who shot a teenager Tuesday during an attempted robbery on Prejean Street, said Deputy Chief Mark Kraus.

Officers responded to a call about gunshots at 6 a.m. at 2260 Prejean St., where they found a wounded 17-year-old boy, Kraus said.

He said the victim remains hospitalized in stable condition.

Witnesses paint picture of abuse

Prosecutors rested their case Wednesday after painting a history of abuse in the trial of a Lake Charles man accused in the 2014 beating death of his girlfriend.

Mario Jamal Viltz, 36, is charged with the second-degree murder of A’Tasha LaShawn Hardy, 25. Hardy was found seriously injured in her Anita Drive home Oct. 30, 2014, and died from her injuries the next day.

Witnesses on Wednesday said they saw Hardy with a black eye on more than one occasion during her relationship with Viltz, including within weeks of her death.

Suspect sought in early Tuesday morning shooting

Lake Charles police are searching for the suspect wanted in the shooting of a man during an attempted robbery.
Deputy Chief Mark Kraus said officers responding to shots of a gun fired at about 6 a.m. Tuesday at 2260 Prejean found a black man with gunshot wounds in stable condition.
Kraus said the suspect is a black man with a medium complexion and a short Afro hairstyle. He was last seen wearing a white T-shirt and black basketball shorts.

Texas police officer killed in apparent burglary attempt

ROUND ROCK, Texas — A Texas sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed at his home north of Austin before dawn on Monday in what authorities said appeared to be an attempted burglary.

Sgt. Craig Hutchinson of the Travis County Sheriff’s Office used his police radio around 1:30 a.m. to report people prowling behind his house. Investigators arriving moments later found Hutchinson lying on the ground in his backyard in Round Rock, about 15 miles from Austin.

He was pronounced dead at a hospital.