Officers prepare early Thursday morning to begin a large warrant sweep conducted by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections Probation and Parole in Calcasieu and Jeff Davis parishes. (Marilyn Monroe / American Press)
Last Modified: Friday, April 21, 2017 10:57 AM
A large warrant sweep of probation and parole violators was conducted Thursday in Calcasieu and Jeff Davis parishes.
More than 60 officers from the Department of Public Safety and Corrections Probation and Parole’s Lake Charles, Lafayette, Lessville and Ville Platte districts were joined by members from the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center Chase Team and deputies from the sheriff’s offices in Calcasieu and Jeff Davis parishes in a search of individuals who have failed to report to their Probation and Parole officer. The operation targeted 50 people and 14 total arrests were made — four beforehand and 10 on Thursday.
“Our office has about 400 active warrant cases. But there is no way we can attempt that many all at once. So what we did was identify those who went into a warrant status in the last six months,” said Leland Hughes, Probation and Parole supervisor for the Lake Charles District Office, which includes Calcasieu, Cameron and Jeff Davis parishes.
He said that reducing it down to that time-line improved the success rate because their information hasn’t had a chance to get old. “Some of these people have absconded because they have returned to a criminal lifestyle, and they don’t want to get caught. But some of them may have forgotten and got off track. This is an attempt to get their attention and get them back on track so that it doesn’t ultimately lead them to prison,” said Hughes.
He said that planning for the operation started three months ago and that it was within the last month that work on the project became “fairly intensive” with targets identified, information put together and packets created. “It has been several years since this has been done here in the Calcasieu Parish area. It is something that we are going to probably do at least every six months,” said Hughes.
He also said that the “full spectrum of the criminal code” was represented in Thursday’s roundup, including cases dealing with manslaughter, battery, drugs, morality and property. But he emphasized that the operation “went perfectly.” “To my knowledge, there were no incidences whatsoever. It was a completely safe operation, which is paramount,” said Hughes.
He encourages those with a warrant out on them to “make things right” by contacting the Probation and Parole office. “We want to send a message out that this is serious. It just doesn’t go away,” said Hughes.
Arrested individuals were booked into the parish correctional facilities.