A state court judge has ordered former Livingston Parish contractor Corey delaHoussaye to have no contact with the investigator in his criminal case. The reason? Prosecutors say he emailed her a photo of another man in his underwear.
DelaHoussaye faces prosecution on allegations of overbilling for post-Hurricane Gustav work. The case against him is based on an investigation conducted by Jessica Webb, of the state Office of Inspector General.
Trying to make a point about a separate incident he felt should have been investigated and prosecuted, delaHoussaye emailed Webb a photo of Denham Springs Police Capt. Steve Kistler, lying on a bed in what appears to be a pair of gym shorts, reading.
The photo was one of hundreds delaHoussaye obtained by public records request after electronic files previously deleted from the parish computer of Mary Kistler, Steve Kistler’s wife and the former Parish Council clerk, were restored.
Before Mary Kistler left her post as clerk to become Parish President Layton Ricks’s executive assistant in 2012, she had many of the files on her clerk’s office computer deleted. The electronic wipe was done to remove her personal files, she said at the time, but the deletion stirred up controversy over whether any public records had been destroyed in the process.
In requesting the no contact order Monday, Assistant District Attorney Greg Murphy offered to show Judge Brenda Ricks, of the 21st Judicial District Court, a printed copy of the photograph.
“I don’t want to see it,” the judge declared, putting up her hand and turning Murphy away.
“She didn’t want to see it either, your Honor,” Murphy said.
Some St. George petition signers having second thoughts
In the past few months, some of the estimated 18,000 people who signed a petition seeking an election to incorporate the proposed city of St. George have had a change of heart, although their numbers are small.
So far, 84 people have formally requested to have their signatures removed from the St. George petition, according to the Registrar of Voters’ Office administrative assistant Aimee Pourciau.
More problematic for those seeking to create the new city, though, is the number of signatures the Registrar’s office has found to be invalid — chipping away at the number required to get on the ballot.
On Monday, Pourciau said the office was about 70 percent done validating the petition and had already tossed about 13 percent of the signatures because they were determined to be invalid. That means the registrar has already disqualified roughly 1,600 signatures, assuming St. George organizers submitted 18,000 signatures.
It’s unclear how many signatures are included in the more than 1,000 page petition. St. George organizers estimated it was in the ball park of about 18,000, which they expect will be what is required to meet the 25 percent of registered voters criteria to set an election. The exact number of signatures needed has not yet been determined by the Registrar’s office. Estimates have ranged from 16,500 to 18,000.
Lionel Rainey, St. George spokesman, said they had already collected an additional 1,000 signatures as back up. He also said it was unclear how big or whether there would be a gap, until they know how many total signatures are required.
Ourso pitches candidacy to EBR chamber group
Darrell Ourso pitched his candidacy for a seat in the state legislature to a group of business and political leaders at a luncheon gathering of the conservative Chamber of Commerce of East Baton Rouge this week.
Ourso, a former Metro Council member, is in a runoff election against current Metro Councilman Buddy Amoroso on March 28 for House District 66. Amoroso received 1,512 votes in the low-turnout general election, while Ourso garnered 1,477.
Two other candidates secured more than 1,200 votes in the primary election, and those votes are now up for grabs.
Ourso delivered his quick speech before Coroner Beau Clark walked through his annual report for 2014.
The Louisiana Legislature meets April 13 and will have to figure out a solution to the $1.6 billion budget deficit that the state faces. Ourso has said he is against taxes but that lawmakers should not limit themselves when trying to plug the budget hole.
Amoroso has remained firmly against tax increases and recently voted against the mayor-president’s proposed tax plan for public safety improvements in the city, which would have included a new mental health center and a new jail.
Advocate staff writers Heidi Kinchen, Rebekah Allen and Andrea Gallo contributed to this report