Louisiana news briefs
Motorcyclist killed in fiery crash in Lafourche
THIBODAUX (AP) — Louisiana State Police say a 54-year-old man died when his motorcycle was rear-ended and caught fire while stopped in heavy traffic.
Trooper Evan Harrell says Thomas Grems of Baton Rouge was trapped between his 2012 Yamaha and 2002 Ford F-150 that hit him.
The accident occurred about 4 p.m. Thursday on northbound La. 308 just north of Thibodaux.
Harrell says the truck driven by 87-year-old Joseph Elfert of Labadieville slammed the motorcycle it into the rear of a Honda Accord. The Honda was pushed off the road and Grems was trapped between the truck and burning motorcycle.
Harrell says the car’s driver, 21-year-old Shelbi Faucheux of Napoleonville, was treated for minor injuries. He says Elfert was not hurt.
Harrell says charges are pending and the crash remains under investigation.
2013 La. state income tax filing begins Jan. 31
BATON ROUGE (AP) — Looking for that tax refund? The state revenue department says it will start processing 2013 individual income tax returns at the end of the month.
The department announced Thursday that state income tax forms will be available online Jan. 31 and the state’s free electronic filing application will begin accepting returns at that time.
The deadline for filing state income taxes is May 15.
More information is available from the Department of Revenue at www.revenue.louisiana.gov . The department recommends electronic filing of tax returns to speed processing.
3 arrested in Chauvin woman’s shooting death
HOUMA (AP) — Terrebonne Parish sheriff’s deputies say three men were arrested Thursday night in the shooting death last month of a 25-year-old Chauvin woman.
Deputies said 21-year-old Du’Quain Vincent and 19-year-old Jalen Francis, both of Chauvin, and 19-year-old Zacchaeus Vincent, of Houma, allegedly tried to sell Elizabeth Davis, and her boyfriend, Jimmy John Scott, illegal drugs on Dec. 18.
Capt. Dawn Foret said Davis was shot while she sat inside her car.
The three suspects were booked with one count of first-degree murder, one count of attempted first-degree murder and one count of attempted armed robbery with a firearm. They were booked at the Terrebonne Parish jail and are awaiting a bond hearing.
Oil recycler opens Baton Rouge distribution center
BATON ROUGE (AP) — A Wichita, Kan., company that re-refines used motor oil has opened a 12,000-square-foot distribution center in Baton Rouge.
The center will serve Universal Lubricants’ customers in Louisiana and Mississippi.
Spokeswoman Lynette F. Viviani said the center will distribute Universal’s branded and proprietary lubricants, which include the Universal and Eco Ultra brands.
Universal Lubricants collects used motor oil and removes used-up additives and impurities at the company’s 13-million-gallon re-refinery in Wichita. The result is a “pure base oil” blended with new additives to produce the Eco Ultra line of oil. Products are used by consumers and commercial customers.
The Baton Rouge location is one of 32 facilities Universal Lubricants has nationwide.
Secretary of State creating
one-stop shop for businesses
BATON ROUGE (AP) — With the click of a mouse, small businesses soon will be able to set up shop in Louisiana without scurrying among state agencies to file the necessary paperwork.
GeauxBiz will allow entrepreneurs to create a business name, get a state tax identification number and build an unemployment insurance account via the Internet.
Secretary of State Tom Schedler said Thursday that his goal with GeauxBiz is to improve efficiencies, reduce costs and cut out duplications across state government. Startup business tasks involving Schedler’s office, the Louisiana Workforce Commission and the state Department of Revenue now will be on a single website.
Police jury to consider
smoking, baggy pants bans
JENNINGS (AP) — Smoking around the courthouse and wearing sagging pants could soon become a thing of the past if the Jefferson Davis Parish Police Jury enacts measures to ban them both.
During an agenda meeting Thursday, Juror Steve Eastman asked the parish to look at making the courthouse and its surrounding annexes smoke-free areas.
Smoking is currently prohibited within 25 feet of the courthouse entrance under a state law.
Several courthouse employees have asked Eastman to look into what needs to be done to establish the smoke-free area.
Police Juror Bryon Buller also asked the parish’s legal adviser to look into making the wearing of sagging pants illegal parish-wide.
Former St. John Parish candidate must pay fine
EDGARD (AP) — The state Ethics Board has denied a request to drop its $1,500 fine against Keith Miller of Edgard, a former candidate for the St. John the Baptist Parish Council.
Ethics Administration staffers said Miller was fined for failing to a file personal financial disclosure report related to his failed 2011 bid for the 1st Council District seat.
Staffers say the report was due Oct. 13, 2011, but was not filed until June 14, 2013.
In his request for the waiver, Miller said he was unaware of the disclosure requirements. He said he’d relied on the guidance of his campaign manager, whom he later realized had lied about expertise in political campaign management.
Another 10 whooping cranes brought to southwest La.
WHITE LAKE (AP) — Ten young whooping cranes are getting used to southwest Louisiana. Later this year, they’ll join 23 older birds in the wild.
Whooping cranes are some of the world’s largest and rarest birds. The 600 or so alive today all are descended from 15 that lived in coastal Texas in 1941.
State Department of Wildlife and Fisheries spokesman Bo Boehringer says 10 arrived at the 71,000-acre White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area on New Year’s Day.
While they get acclimated, they’ll live in a 70-foot-wide pen topped with netting.
It’s inside a 1.5-acre open-topped pen with an electrified wire outside to help keep out such predators as bobcats and coyotes. When the birds are ready, they’ll be let into the wider pen to fly where they will.
Police: Son killed mom, told siblings she was sick
WALKER (AP) — Police in a Baton Rouge suburb say a 17-year-old shot and killed his mother and returned home several times over the next two days to feed two younger half-siblings, telling them their mother was ill and not to disturb her.
A family acquaintance found the body of 34-year-old Tamila Wooley on Wednesday in her bedroom in a gated community, said Walker Police Capt. John Sharp. She had multiple bullet wounds, had been dead at least two days, and her black Lexus sedan and older son were missing, Sharp said
He said the teen was stopped early Thursday in his mother’s car. During questioning, he told investigators he had shot his mother late Sunday or early Monday, Sharp said.
He said the youth “explained to us that he returned to the residence several times after the shooting to feed the children, who we understand to be his half-brother and half-sister, telling the children that their mother was ill and not to be disturbed.”
He said the teen was booked on a second-degree murder charge.
The Associated Press generally does not name juveniles who are accused of crimes.
Sharp says the younger children, ages 11 and 2, were in state custody until out-of-state relatives could arrive.
Walker is 16 miles east of Baton Rouge in Livingston Parish. It was chartered as a village in 1909 and as a city in 2011.
The killing was the first there in five years.