Three men booked on cockfighting charges, and other area crime news _lowres

Khoa T. Nguyen, 30, Son K. Bui, 29, Phuong H. Lam

Three Jefferson Parish men were booked Thursday on cockfighting charges, the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office said. The trio are believed to have been operating an illegal gambling operation in lower Plaquemines Parish.

Deputies received an anonymous tip about 1 p.m. of a large crowd on Perry Lane in Buras possibly participating in a cockfight.

Upon arrival, deputies found nearly 40 Asian and Hispanic men in a wooded area involved in an active cockfight. When they saw the deputies, the men fled.

Deputies discovered a makeshift pit that was being used as a fighting ring. Near the pit, deputies found a rooster that had died from its injuries but still had fighting spurs attached to its legs, and another bird that was barely breathing. Three live roosters were found in cages, and 15 sets of fighting spurs were recovered nearby.

Deputies believe three men were responsible for the operation: Khoa T. Nguyen, 30, of Marrero; Son K. Bui, 29, of Marrero; and Phuong H. Lam, 29, of Harvey.

The Sheriff’s Office said Nguyen was found in possession of a rooster, Bui was attaching spurs to the legs of a rooster in preparation for another fight and Lam transported the roosters to the location in shipping crates.

Plaquemines Parish Animal Control officers took possession of the five birds.

All three men were arrested and transported to the Belle Chasse Lockup for booking.

Nguyen and Lam each were booked with cockfighting as it relates to possession of a chicken with the intent that the chicken will be used in an unlawful commercial or private cockfight. Bui was booked with cockfighting as it relates to possessing paraphernalia such as spurs, knives and other items normally used in cockfighting.

The maximum penalty is a $2,000 fine and a year in jail. A first offender also must perform 15 eight-hour days of court-approved community service; the community service requirement cannot be suspended.

The men were all released on $1,500 bonds.

28-year-old arrested in armed robbery

Micah Howard, 28, was arrested in connection with an armed robbery that occurred Thursday in the 900 block of Harding Drive in the Bayou St. John neighborhood, New Orleans police said.

A man was walking home with groceries about 8:30 p.m. when Howard approached him, armed with a gun, and demanded the victim’s wallet and car keys, police said. When the victim said he did not have a car, Howard allegedly demanded the grocery bags. The victim complied, and Howard fled down Harding Drive toward Dumaine Street.

Shortly thereafter, the victim saw his grocery bags on the front lawn of a residence and noticed his iPad was missing. He was able to give the police operator a description of Howard.

While responding to the scene, Officers Edgar Baron and Clinton Lawrence saw a man matching the description at Dumaine and North Gayoso streets. When the man, later identified as Howard, saw the officers, he fled into a yard in the 900 block of North Gayoso Street while holding a gun. Howard was later apprehended in the rear yard of 2925 Dumaine with the assistance of a K-9 unit.

Officers said they learned that Howard had forced his way into a residence on North Dupre Street while being pursued. The victim’s iPad was recovered at that location.

Howard allegedly confessed to having had a firearm, but he said it was a pellet gun that he had discarded while fleeing. It has not been recovered.

Howard was booked with armed robbery, simple burglary, illegal possession of stolen things, possession of a firearm by a felon and resisting an officer. He is on parole for possession of stolen property until February 2016.

Man arrested in New Year’s Eve shooting

New Orleans police arrested Willie Nguyen, 22, in connection with discharging a firearm on New Year’s Eve near Bullard Avenue and Dwyer Road in New Orleans East.

Shortly before 10:30 p.m., Officer Jonathan Parker was on patrol in the area when he heard gunshots. Following the sound of the shots led him to an abandoned service road, where he came upon Nguyen and three others.

When Nguyen observed the officer, he immediately placed an AK-47 rifle into a case and attempted to walk away from it, police said. He was apprehended without incident and admitted to being the only one who fired the rifle.

Nguyen was booked with illegal use of a weapon.

Two rapes reported on New Year’s Day

New Orleans police reported two aggravated rapes on New Year’s Day.

In the first incident, a female juvenile was sexually assaulted by two male family members, police said.

Police said the crime occurred about 7:30 p.m. but did not say where.

In the second case, a woman about 38 years old was sexually assaulted multiple times in the area of Marengo and Chestnut streets, police said.

The rape was reported about 11:30 p.m.

Convenience store held up in Gentilly Terrace

The Brown Derby No. 4 convenience store at 3737 Clematis St. was robbed Thursday night, police said.

Two men entered the store about 8:15 p.m. and demanded money from the register and lottery ticket sales. The owners complied.

Besides the owners, a 25-year-old man and a 41-year-old woman, a 43-year-old customer was in the store at the time.

Man stabbed on Paul Morphy Street

A 28-year-old man was stabbed Thursday night in the Fair Grounds neighborhood.

The victim was returning home from work shortly before 11 p.m. when he was approached from behind in the 1500 block of Paul Morphy Street by an unknown man who stabbed him from the back before fleeing.

The victim went to a friend’s house and called police. He was taken to the hospital by EMS.