HOUMA — Former Gov. Edwin Edwards will be the grand marshal when the Krewe of Hercules parades at 6 p.m. today, kicking off the Carnival season in Houma.
Houma native and retired New York Giants football player Brandon Jacobs also will ride in the parade.
The krewe’s theme is “Hercules Celebrates Louisiana Bicentennial.”
The all-male krewe will have 32 double-decker floats.
Kimball retires at Supreme Court
NEW ORLEANS — After 20 years of service on the Louisiana Supreme Court, Chief Justice Catherine “Kitty” Kimball has formally retired.
Kimball, who officially retired Thursday, became the first woman on the Supreme Court when she was elected in 1992 from the Fifth District, which covers Ascension, East and West Baton Rouge, East and West Feliciana, Iberville, Livingston and Pointe Coupee parishes. In January 2009, she became the court’s first female chief justice.
The following January, Kimball suffered a stroke and spent five weeks in a hospital. She was released from a rehabilitation hospital Feb. 22, 2010, and returned to the bench in December but had to significantly cut back on her workload.
Voters elected Republican appeals court Judge Jeff Hughes in a runoff to fill her seat. Kimball’s term runs until 2018.
3 brothers arrested in 1982 death
ALEXANDRIA — Three brothers have been arrested in the 1982 beating death Dan Triplett, 77, of Woodworth.
Sheriff William Earl Hilton said on Thursday that John F. McNeal, 48, of Woodworth and Bobby Ray McNeal Sr., 50, of Lena were booked with first-degree murder and aggravated burglary. Mark McNeal, 47, of Alexandria was booked with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder and aggravated burglary.
Hilton says on Aug. 9, 1982, a neighbor found Triplett in his home.
The sheriff said Triplett’s hands and feet were bound. A pillow case was covering his head and tied around his neck. Triplett also had suffered a beating to the head.
Hilton said detectives believe robbery was the motive for the death.
Man admits to chicken feet scam
BATON ROUGE — A 25-year-old Baton Rouge man admits he used the Internet, an imaginary company and nonexistent supplies of frozen chicken feet to swindle a combined total of $166,000 from 13 wholesalers.
Chicken feet sometimes are processed into animal feed in this country, but people in China and other Asian countries consider the crunchy items a dining delicacy.
Terence Ndangoh was indicted by a federal grand jury in May on seven counts of wire fraud. The Cameroon national signed a plea agreement in August.
Chief U.S. District Judge Brian A. Jackson sentenced Ndangoh Wednesday to 21 months in federal prison and ordered him to pay restitution of $138,000 that has not yet been recovered for his bilked buyers.
Lafayette airport has record year
LAFAYETTE — A record number of passengers flew into and out of Lafayette Regional Airport in 2012, marking three consecutive years of record-breaking passenger activity.
A total of 459,119 travelers flew into and out of the airport in 2012, topping the previous number of 455,730 set in 2011.
Mike Burrows, the airport’s assistant director of aviation, credited the soaring activity to increased marketing efforts through the Fly Lafayette campaign.
Man indicted in stabbing deaths
THIBODAUX — A Lafourche Parish grand jury has indicted David Brown, 35, on multiple charges tied to the stabbing death of a mother and her two children in Lockport.
Deputies says they believe Brown killed Jacquelin Nieves, 29, and her two daughters, Gabriela, 6, and 20-month-old Izabela on Nov. 4.
Deputies say Brown allegedly raped two of the females before killing them.
Their bodies were found during an apartment fire. Officials say the fire was set to cover up the murders.
Brown was indicted on three counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted first-degree murder, two counts of sexual battery and one count of aggravated arson.
He is being held in the Lafourche Parish jail on a $3.2 million bond. Arraignment is scheduled for Feb. 19.
Former lawyer pleads guilty to fraud
BATON ROUGE — James M. Bernhard III has pleaded guilty in Baton Rouge federal court to one count of wire fraud and admitted that he schemed to divert over $453,000 of his former law firm’s money to his personal use.
Bernhard told Chief U.S. District Judge Brian A. Jackson that he has been under a psychiatrist’s care and is taking medically prescribed drugs.
Bernhard’s attorneys told the judge they believed Bernhard was mentally competent and aware of the ramifications of his guilty plea.
Jackson noted that the wire fraud conviction carries a possible penalty of 20 years in prison and possible fine of $250,000. Bernhard said he understood those possibilities.
Bernhard is the son of Shaw Group Inc. Chairman Jim Bernhard.
Jackson scheduled a sentencing hearing for May 23.
Former Orleans lawmaker chosen for ethics board
BATON ROUGE — The Louisiana Senate has chosen a former New Orleans lawmaker who spent more than three decades in the Legislature to fill an open seat on the Louisiana Board of Ethics.
In a special meeting Thursday, senators voted 32-0 to appoint former Rep. Emile “Peppi” Bruneau for the position on the 11-member board.
Bruneau was chosen from seven candidates recommended by the presidents of the state’s private colleges, who are assigned the task by law.
Bruneau, a Republican attorney, was a member of the state House from 1976 to 2007, serving in the chamber’s number two job for eight years. He also spent years on the House committee that oversees state ethics laws.
Senators talked of Bruneau’s knowledge of the ethics code and of the Legislature as they backed his appointment.
City of NO asks to vacate police reform order
NEW ORLEANS — The city of New Orleans has filed a voluminous court document seeking to vacate a consent decree designed to clean up problems within its police department.
The motion to vacate was filed in federal court Thursday.
The city contends it was forced to withdraw its consent to the decree signed with the U.S. Department of Justice “due to the tainted nature of the negotiations that led to its signing.”
The city alleges misconduct by Justice, including failing to disclose costs to fix the Orleans Parish jail until after the decree was signed; Justice’s insistence on including secondary employment provisions and its designation of former federal prosecutor Sal Perricone as the U.S. Attorney’s point person during negotiations.
Perricone resigned after anonymously posting comments about open cases on The Times-Picayune’s companion website.
From The Associated Press.