Teen pleads not guilty in Carnival killings
A 19-year-old Landry-Walker High School student accused of killing two men on St. Charles Avenue as the Muses parade rolled the night of Feb. 12 pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a pair of murder counts, obstruction and illegally carrying a firearm on a parade route.
John Hicks, who lists an address on North Miro Street, was indicted last week for the Carnival killings that briefly rattled the city during its signature celebration.
Police say Hicks fatally shot Peter Dabney, 21, and Ivan Williams, 22, in the 1200 block of St. Charles about 10 p.m.
Officers chased after Hicks, who police said was captured on federal Department of Homeland Security video surveillance. Police said they recovered a black handgun Hicks tossed into some bushes while running down the 1700 block of Martin Luther King Boulevard, where police caught up with him.
According to an application by NOPD Detective Tanisha Sykes for an arrest warrant, Hicks admitted that he and a group of friends had engaged in “a verbal altercation that turned physical with a group of individuals, at which time he admitted to firing his weapon twice at the subjects.”
Hicks tested positive in an initial gunshot residue test done at the scene.
He remains in Orleans Parish Prison, held on $2.25 million bail on the four-count indictment handed out Thursday.
Hicks, who is represented by the Public Defender’s Office, is due back in court May 11. His only prior adult arrest was in March 2014 for possession of marijuana and contraband.
He faces a mandatory life prison term if convicted of murder.
St. Charles deputy released from hospital
The St. Charles Parish sheriff’s deputy who was shot three times Thursday morning in what authorities described as an ambush attack has been released from the hospital, Sheriff Greg Champagne said Tuesday.
Cpl. Burt Hazeltine was directing school traffic in Paradis when he was shot. Authorities have said a Mississippi man named John DeVillier became enraged when he was not allowed to make a left turn. DeVillier has been booked on attempted murder of a police officer.
On Tuesday, Champagne expressed his excitement at Hazeltine’s release.
“I am thrilled to announce that by the grace of God, Cpl. Burt Hazeltine has been released from the hospital to continue his recovery at home!” Champagne said in a statement. “We thank everyone for your prayers and support!”
Champagne’s office and the St. Charles Fraternal Order of Police No. 15 have jointly established a benefit fund for the 36-year-old Hazeltine, who has four children.
Woman shot as gun sale goes wrong
A Kenner woman’s attempt to buy a handgun apparently backfired Monday night, sending her to the hospital with a gunshot wound to the leg.
Chernielle Thomas, 39, told police that she arranged to meet a friend named Stephen Thompson to buy the gun, according to Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office spokesman Col. John Fortunato.
But Thompson tried to turn the sale into a stick-up, pulling a gun on Thomas near Wilson Street and Vintage Drive in Metairie, Fortunato said. He said Thompson demanded her money, and then the gun went off.
The victim said Thompson offered to take her to the hospital if she wouldn’t tell authorities what happened.
Sheriff’s deputies found Thomas at Ochsner Medical Center in Kenner about 9 p.m. and arrested Thompson outside the hospital. Police said he admitted to shooting Thomas but claimed it was an accident.
Detectives took a .25-caliber gun from Thompson’s vehicle, Fortunato said.
Thompson was booked on counts of attempted armed robbery, being a felon in possession of a firearm and aggravated battery.
Man stripped of clothes and money
A 24-year-old man was robbed of his clothes and money Monday evening in the 3800 block of Banks Street, New Orleans police said.
Police said the victim was entering his vehicle about 5:10 p.m. when he noticed that an unknown man was sitting inside it.
The man forced him to remove his clothes and then relieved him of his money.
Police seek man in attempted robbery
A man walked into the Waffle House at 11951 I-10 Service Road early Tuesday morning with a gun and tried to rob it, New Orleans police said.
The man entered the New Orleans East establishment about 5:10 a.m. and demanded access to the safe, police said.
The cashier locked herself in a bathroom, and the cook fled. When the suspect tried to force the cook to return, police said, the cook said he didn’t know how to open the safe, and the robber fled.
Cops nab two men, locate 15 stolen cars
New Orleans police said a joint operation with Louisiana State Police led them to two men and more than a dozen stolen vehicles.
State Police conducted the operation with the NOPD’s Auto Theft Unit.
The first man arrested was Kevin Newton, 46, who police said they found April 15 driving a 2008 black GMC Yukon reported stolen in Houston a month ago. Newton was unable to provide proof that he owned the SUV and was booked on unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.
The other man was Kenya Guy, 36. Police booked him on possession of a stolen 2010 Toyota Camry.
Police recovered 13 additional cars during the two-day operation.
NOPD arrests man in attempted murder
Police arrested 22-year-old Darrion Hubbard on Sunday in connection with an attempted murder, Officer Garry Flot said.
Police said they discovered Hubbard while questioning a 16-year-old juvenile about a carjacking in the 1800 block of St. Bernard Avenue. Police detained both after a caller identified the juvenile as responsible for an April 15 carjacking.
Police said Hubbard was wanted on a warrant for an April 17, 2013, attempted murder at Interstate 10 and North Claiborne Avenue.