State Police Cadet Class 100 Graduates 51 New Troopers, 5 in Troop E for Central Louisiana

Baton Rouge – Louisiana State Police announced the graduation of its 100th Cadet Class on May 12.  51 individuals completed their dedicated journey and became Louisiana State Troopers.

Troop E welcomes five new Troopers in Central Louisiana. After months of intensive training, their hard work and determination culminated in the privilege to protect the citizens of Louisiana. They are Shannon Constantine, Bronson Dauzat, Charles Dranguet, Brooke Francis, and Tristen Nicholas.

Troop E covers a total of 8,067 square miles and 9,314 miles of highway in Natchitoches, Sabine, Winn, LaSalle, Grant, Vernon, Rapides, Avoyelles, Catahoula, and Concordia Parishes

Throughout the Louisiana State Police Training Academy, cadets received training in various subjects including crash investigation, emergency vehicle operations, impaired driving detection, traffic incident management, defensive tactics, fair and impartial policing, ethics in law enforcement and leadership in addition to a rigorous physical training regimen. Having successfully completed the LSP Training Academy, the newly graduated Troopers will deploy across the state, where they will participate in a 10-14 week field-training program while supervised by a veteran Louisiana State Trooper.

For more information on the process of becoming a Louisiana State Trooper, please visit our recruiting page at or contact your local LSP Public Information Officer at  The Louisiana State Police Commission is currently accepting applications for upcoming academy classes.  For more information on cadet testing, visit the Louisiana State Police Commission website at

Visit for more information on the hiring process, qualifications, physical fitness standards, and frequently asked questions. LSP Recruiters can be reached at

For those applicants not meeting LSP minimum qualifications at this time, immediate positions are available within the Louisiana Department of Public Safety Police through the Louisiana State Civil Service System. Visit and for more information.

A country boy’s music can survive

Conway Twitty was regretfully low-growling to a woman about how she was standing on a bridge that just won’t burn.

Ronnie Milsap was having daydreams about night things in the middle of the afternoon, somebody with not much sense was making Crystal Gayle’s brown eyes blue, and Barbara Mandrell was singing about sleeping single in a double bed, a situation difficult for a boy like me to contemplate, especially if you’ve ever seen Barbara Mandrell in person, which I did several times in the 1980s.

Country musically, it was a simpler time, a time I thought was forgotten until last week’s effort about the mournful passing of the entertaining singer and keyboard wizard Mickey Gilley at 86 prompted grateful mail that I am still answering. I thought the last fan of the Urban Cowboy music era had been stored away in some dusty attic, like the unwanted steel guitar and dobro.

Wrong. There are apparently more out there like me who wonder what happened to “our” music and have a hard time listening to anything past 1985 billed as “country.” Oh, every now and then a Toby Keith has squeaked in an “I’m Just Talkin’ ’Bout Tonight.” Travis Tritt got “Bible Belt” and “10 Feet Tall And Bulletproof” past the guardians of what passes for today’s country.

And thank goodness the new-schoolers weren’t looking when Lee Ann Womack showed up singing about how she should be ashes by now and also that she was a little past Little Rock but a long way from over you, (something “you” should be ashamed of).

It’s like the Statler Brothers sang when they sensed the sands shifting those hard-to-believe 35ish years ago: “I’ll tell you friend/a mandolin/won’t get you on a TV show/…whoa no…”

But there was a magical time, a bit after the Glory Days of George Jones and Johnny Cash, Mighty Merle and Roger Miller and Tammy Whynot (oops; typo?), Loretta Lynn, Jeannie Seely and Marty Robbins, all the fastball pitchers of my pre-driving days. After them came Gilley and the Gang, Country Music’s last stand.

Gene Watson picked the wildwood flower. Rosanne Cash explained the way we make a broken heart, and Rodney Crowell said she was crazy for leaving, a No. 1 song written by the great Guy Clark.

The Judds had to explain to momma that he was crazy. Don Williams was livin’ on Tulsa time, Keith Whitley was no stranger to the rain, all George Strait’s exes lived in Texas, and Emmylou Harris, the female standard bearer in this bureau, said she’d walk all the way from Boulder to Birmingham if she just had two more bottles of wine, and thank you Delbert McClinton for writing that.

Alabama. Wow. Nothing quite like old Alabama and old flames and Dixieland delights. The pre-Elvira Oak Ridge Boys in the Y’all Come Back Saloon. Janie Frickie was down to her last broken heart, and Con Hunley (“You Lay A Whole Lotta Love On Me”), Earl Thomas Conley (“Heavenly Bodies”) and John Conlee (“I Don’t Remember Lovin’ You”) had sound-alike names but sound-different-but-top-shelf hits.

The Bellamy Brothers. The dynamic Ricky Skaggs, who begged his girl not to cheat in their hometown or he’d tell Uncle Pen. Juice Newton, the queen of hearts. Vern Gosdin, who just wanted Joe to set ’em up and play “Walkin’ The Floor.” Not too much to ask, right?

Kenny gambling and Dolly warning me that it was going to be a hard candy Christmas unless I worked 9 to 5, and together they were islands in the stream.

Marshall Tucker. Charlie Daniels. The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and “An American Dream.” And Sir Edward Rabbitt, who loved him on a rainy night and some rocky mountain music.

Two heavyweights were 1) Willie and the geographically challenging, ever-moving whiskey river, and 2) Waylon warning mommas not to let their babies grow up to be cowboys.

But if they did, well, that was OK too. Because Hank “Bocephus” Jr. said country folk and cowboy folk can survive … back when they were playing our song.

I’ll go punch up the next five tunes. . .Anybody got a quarter? A solid? Anyone?

Contact Teddy at

Various genres of music presented at the 2022 Natchitoches Jazz/R&B Festival

The organizers of the Natchitoches Jazz/R&B Festival, which is going to be presented on the downtown riverbank stage on May 20th and 21st always like to spotlight the diversity of the music at the event and love to set a “If you can’t find some music at this festival that you like, then you just don’t like music.” This statement is clearly illustrated when you break down the various genres of music presented at the festival and the bands that will be performing music of that genre:


Dave Duplissey’s Sax in the Corner Band
The Nakatosh Rhythm Chiefs
The Dan Sumner Band – Featuring Coco York
The Forsyth Jazz Collective

Note: All Jazz bands will be performing on the Jazz Stage which will now be located at venue on Front Street.


The Commodores
Klockwork Band
Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs
Deshawn Washington
The Kelli Roberts Band
Josh Hyde and the Lost Parish
The Turn-Ups
Cane River Soul


The Commodores
L.A. Roxx
Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs
James Burton
The Kelli Roberts Band
The Sundown Band
Jesse Cole
The Turn-Ups
The Comeback Kids
Cane River Soul


Gerard Delafose and the Zydeco Gators
B Cam and the Zydeco Young Bucks


Josh Hyde and the Lost Parish
Klockwork Band
Cane River Soul
The Snake Doctors


Marty Haggard
The Chase Tyler Band
Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs
The Sundown Band
Armadillo Jackal Band
The Comeback Kids


The Commodores
Klockwork Band
Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs
Cane River Soul


L.A. Sweet T
Armadillo Jackal Band
Snake Doctors
50 Man Machine


L.A. Sweet T
50 Man Machine

The festival begins on Friday, May 20th at 7 p.m. with Gerard Delafose and the Zydeco Gators followed by L. A. Roxx, then continues all day Saturday, May 21st with over 20 bands on four different stages with The Commodores closing the show.

There will be lots of food and activities for the kids at this family friendly event.

For tickets and more information go to

Thou Shalt Not Steal

By Brad Dison

On the night of April 23, 2006, David Kotkin, Cathy Daly, and Mia Volmut went to dinner after work in West Palm Beach, Florida. David was a multimillionaire and Cathy and Mia were his assistants. At about 11:15 pm, after they had finished dinner, they left the restaurant and walked into the parking lot. They were unaware that they were being watched.

Four teenagers sat in a dark car and watched as David, Cathy and Mia exited the restaurant. When the trio was about halfway between the restaurant and their vehicle, far enough that they would be unable to run to the safety of either, the teenagers jumped from their parked car. Before the trio could react, pistols were pointing at their faces at close range. The teenagers told the trio to give them their money, cell phones, and whatever else of value they had on them. By stealing their phones, the robbers knew they would be long gone by the time the trio could alert police.

Cathy and Mia gave the teenage robbers a purse which contained about 200 euros, $100, a passport, and airline tickets. Cathy and Mia emptied their pockets of about $400. To the robbers, it was looking like it was going to be a good night. In David, however, they were attempting to rob the wrong man.

David, himself, had a habit of making things disappear and could escape pretty much any situation which presented itself. He had made his fortune by making things owned by other people disappear right before their own eyes. At his peak, David cleverly pulled in thousands of dollars per night.

David remained calm. He carefully studied the faces of the teenage hoodlums. At their insistence, David pulled his pockets inside out. He showed the robbers that his pockets contained nothing of value. The teenagers were surprised that he had no money, no wallet, and no cell phone, when they had made such a big score from his companions.

Finally satisfied that they had taken all there was to take from the trio, the teenage robbers ran to their car and sped away. David had outsmarted the four robbers. By using what he referred to as “reverse pickpocketing” aided by the shadows that the night provided, David hid his cell phone and wallet in the palms of his hands. As the robbers were fleeing, David, cell phone already in his hand, dialed 911 and gave the police the license plate number of the robbers’ car.

Within minutes, police arrested the four teenage robbers and recovered the stolen goods. At the police station, David, Cathy, and Mia easily identified the teenage robbers. Police charged the teenagers with armed robbery and held them without bond. Some of officers knew that David had a habit of cutting women into pieces, but none attempted to arrest him. Rather, several of them asked for his autograph. You know David Kotkin by his professional name. He is master illusionist David Copperfield.

Sources: Fromm, Emily. “David Copperfield Robbed at Gunpoint.” Accessed May 9, 2022.

NRMC Wound Center Receives National Recognition

The NRMC Wound Center was recently recognized for receiving the Center of Distinction Award; the prestigious Robert A. Warriner, III Clinical Excellence Award for 2021, and a 2021 President’s Circle Award recipient.

For more than a decade, Healogics has presented the Center of Distinction Award to acknowledge the hard work, dedication and accomplishments of Wound Centers that deliver care, treatment and services in a manner that exceeds the performance of other like Centers. Center of Distinction awards are given to Centers that achieve or exceed outstanding clinical and operational results, including ≥ 92% Patient Satisfaction Rate, ≥ 75% Wound Adjusted Comprehensive Healing Rate and a ≤ 16% Outlier Rate.

To be awarded the Clinical Excellence Award, a Center must score in the top 10 percent of eligible Wound Care Centers for 2021 on the Clinical Excellence measure, which is the Comprehensive Healing Rate weighted by wound mix.

The 2021 President’s Circle Award is based on achieving or exceeding outstanding clinical and operational results in 2021. This award distinguishes winners as the best of the best.

“We are exceptionally proud of our outstanding wound care team,” explained Kirk Soileau, NRMC CEO. “Since opening, they have consistently set high standards of care and customer service and performed their work at the top deciles nationally. Their ability to heal problem wounds is astounding. They improve their patients’ quality of life by successfully treating wounds that impact every aspect of life: physically and emotionally. Most importantly, they are saving lives and limbs. Thank you to every member of the NRMC Wound Care team for your care and commitment to our community.”

For more information on wound care services, please visit

Sabine Parish youth encouraged to participate in Summer Reading Program

The Sabine Parish Library will hold its 2022 Summer Reading Program from June 3 – July 15. This year’s theme is “Oceans of Possibilities.”

A Kick Off Celebration will be held on Friday, June 3 at 10 am at the Many Community Center featuring Musician Johnette Downing.

The Summer Reading Program will take place at the library’s main branch in Many on the following days:

Mondays at 10 am for ages 0-2

Tuesdays at 10 am for ages 3-4

Wednesdays at 10 am for ages 5-7

Thursdays at 1 pm for ages 8-12

The program will take place at the library’s Toledo Branch on Tuesdays at 1 pm, Zwolle Branch on Tuesdays at 1 pm and at Converse Branch on Tuesdays at 2 pm.

Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training

ATTENTION: Educators, Law-enforcement, health-care providers, mental-healthcare providers, teens 16 years and older, parents, clergy, administrators, blue and white collar workers, etc.

We invite you to attend a 2-DAY, ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training). ASIST is similar to a CPR skill that resuscitates someone to physically breath again, whereas ASIST helps resuscitate someone into wanting to keep breathing. The cost to you is $0, because we want everyone to have an opportunity to learn this skill. It is our belief, that suicide can be prevented if we all learn how to recognize someone who may be thinking of suicide and help them agree to work towards safety. All mental health professionals, in the nation, can receive 12 CEUs after this training, through Livingworks education, for a $60 fee. 

Avoyelles Parish: May 16/17, 30/31, & Aug 2/3 (CLHSD)

Vernon Parish: June 6/7 (Leesville) (CLHSD)

Red River Parish: Jun 20/21 (Coushatta) (Christus)

Bienville Parish: July 25/26 (Arcadia) (Christus)


Save a Life: Buckle Up

The Many Police Department recently received a Special Wave Enforcement grant from the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission to partner with the state in its annual Click it or Ticket program.  

May 23 through June 6 the Town of Many Police Department will check to make sure everyone is properly secured in their vehicles, drivers and passengers alike. Extra patrols will be on duty to ensure  citizens are safe as they travel on city streets and roads throughout town. 

“This campaign is to raise awareness that wearing a seat belt is one of the safest habits to learn, from the time your children are passengers in a vehicle,” said Many Police Chief Cheryl Wooley.  “One of the safest choices you can make is to buckle up EVERY TIME you get into a vehicle, especially for children.”

Many Americans understand the lifesaving values of the seat belt as the national use rate was 90.7% in 2019. Seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved an estimated 14,955 lives in 2018. In contrast, of the 22,215 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2019, 47% were not wearing seat belts. 

The consequences of not wearing or improperly wearing a seat belt are clear. When a person is properly restrained in a seat belt, the chance of being ejected from the vehicle in a crash is close to zero but almost always results in death if ejected because of not wearing a seat belt. Air bags are not enough to project you in a crash and can seriously harm or kill you if you are not properly restrained in your seat belt. In 2017, 54% of unrestrained passengers ages 13-15 were killed in vehicle crashes. 

With school about to be out and the summer holidays fast approaching, more people will take to the roads on vacation. Always be sure you and your passengers are properly buckled in to keep everyone safe even if you are involved in a wreck. Constantly remind your children to buckle up properly during the whole ride and always make sure they are buckled in prior to moving the car, no matter how short or routine the trip.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website,, has information about properly restraining vehicle occupants including infants and small children.  Always remember to buckle up when getting into a vehicle before you begin driving. The life you save just may be your own.

BOM Sponsors the Toledo Bend Lake Association

BOM was a table sponsor for the Toledo Bend Lake Association – Bass Unlimited Banquet. All proceeds raised at the Bass Unlimited Auction are directly invested into projects benefitting the Toledo Bend Lake Area – projects like the Sabine Parish 5th Grade Fishing Clinic, purchasing school supplies for Sabine Parish and Sabine County children, and boat ramp signs around the lake.

Pictured left to right: Ted Dove (TBLA – Sponsor Committee Chairman), and Daniel Bennett (BOM Sabine Parish Market President)

NSU Awards Spring Diplomas

Northwestern State University awarded 1,025 degrees to 991 graduates during spring commencement May 11-12.  Graduates collected diplomas for associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral degrees, post-baccalaureate certificates and post-master’s degrees.  An honorary doctor of humanities was awarded to Baton Rouge businesswoman and 1968 NSU alumna Lela Mae Wilkes.

Graduates listed by hometown (in Sabine Parish) are as follows.

Belmont – Jayce Gentry, Bachelor of Science;

Converse – Kimberly Dobbs, Associate of Science in Nursing; Hannah Parker, Master of Education;

Florien – Lacey Ezernack, Associate of General Studies; Shellie Miller, Bachelor of General Studies;  Connor Arthur, Bachelor of Science; Stefanie Corley, Master of Science in Nursing;

Many – Sarah Lewing, Associate of General Studies; Seth Ozsoy, Bachelor of Arts; Emmalynn Beason, Toby Bruce, Gabrielle Bryant, Shayla Duhon, Haydn Knight, Tanner Rains, Aubrey Sepulvado, Tobias Williams, Bachelor of Science;                                                                                                                

Pleasant Hill – Ethan Johnson, Bachelor of Science; 

Zwolle – Jerry Palmer, Autumn Wyatt, Bachelor of General Studies; Lloyd Gentry, Mckenzie Steele, Emerald Terrell, Bachelor of Science  

Notice of Death – May 17, 2022

Benedict “Bubba” LaCour, Jr.
December 1, 1945 – May 4, 2022
Service: Saturday, May 21 at 11 am at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Isle Brevelle

Marie Guthrie Saucier
January 18, 1926 – May 16, 2022
Service: Wednesday, May 18 at 12 pm at Bethel Church of Christ, located at 4793 Highway 501 in Winnfield

Terry Lynn Fields
December 31, 1951 – May 14, 2022
Service: Wednesday, May 18 at 1 pm at Rockett-Nettles Funeral Home Chapel

Sheriff’s Office seeks information regarding stolen motorcycle

Sabine Parish Sheriff Detectives are requesting your help in reference to a stolen motorcycle.
A 2019 KTM EXC-F 500 was taken from the Acorn Hills RV Park on LA Highway 6 east of Many on May 4.
The victim is offering a $500 reward for information that leads to the return or arrest of the suspect.
If you have any information, please contact Detective Flores, Sabine CID, at 318-590-9475 or submit a tip through our Sabine Parish Sheriff App.

Many Police seek information on missing child

The Many Police Department is seeking any information that could be critical to finding Shelby Loranna Carhee, born on March 11, 2010. She was last seen last seen wearing black hoodie, brown pants, possibly tennis shoes or sandals.

If you have any information, please contact 911 immediately. Don’t let her become another stat.

Five suspects arrested for felony burglaries of local sawmills costing nearly $200,000

Sabine Parish Sheriff Aaron Mitchell reports five suspects have been arrested for felony burglaries of two local sawmills. The cost of replacement and damages in these cases is near $200,000.
Randy Lawayne Sanders, 41 of Fisher; Christopher James Knippers, 37 of Fisher; Rebecca Yvonne Desadier, 50 of Florien; Darla K Lewing, 55 of Florien; and Stephanie Renee Gentes, 37 of Fisher, were arrested.
The Sabine Parish Sheriff’s Office received reports in February regarding missing copper wire and other items from the old Boise Cascade Fisher Sawmill. The site is currently being used as storage for the Boise Cascade Florien Operations. Boise Cascade Representatives report property and replacement costs at approximately $69,000.
At the end of April the Broadway Sawmill on Recknor Road reported over $100,000 of copper wire and other items taken from that site and replacement costs would be even higher.
Sabine Parish Sheriff Deputies collected evidence and obtained statements. Detective D. Flores began working the cases with help from Fisher Police Chief and Detective L. Thomas and Deputy G. Sculthorpe. Detectives believe the burglaries began from the old Fisher Sawmill late last year and occurred during the month of April from the Broadway Sawmill.
Detective Flores was able to develop Sanders, Knippers, Desadier, Lewing, and Gentes as suspects in the Fisher Sawmill burglaries. Sanders, Knippers, and Desadier were the suspects in the burglaries at the Broadway Sawmill, according to Detective Flores. Detective Flores interviewed several suspects and witnesses and said the cases are still under investigation and additional suspects and/or charges are pending.
Sanders was booked into the Sabine Parish Detention Center for 2-counts of Simple burglary (Felony), 2-counts of Theft (Felony) > $25,000, 2-counts of Simple criminal damage to property (Felony) > $50,000.
Knippers was booked for 2-counts of Simple burglary (Felony), 2-counts of Theft (Felony) > $25,000, 2-counts of Simple criminal damage to property (Felony) > $50,000, a warrant for Domestic abuse battery (Strangulation) 2nd offense & Violation of protective order.
Desadier was booked into the Sabine Parish Women’s Jail for 2-counts of Simple burglary (Felony), 2-counts of Theft (Felony) > $25,000, 2-counts of Simple criminal damage to property (Felony) > $50,000.
Lewing was booked for Simple burglary (Felony), Theft (Felony) > $25,000, Simple criminal damage to property (Felony) > $50,000.
Gentes was booked for Simple burglary (Felony), Theft (Felony) > $25,000, Simple criminal damage to property (Felony) > $50,000.
The 11th Judicial District Court set Sanders and Desadier total bonds at $60,000 each, Knippers total bonds at $85,000, and Lewing and Gentes bonds at $35,000 each.
All five subjects were incarcerated as of Monday, May 9. Sheriff Mitchell and Chief Deputy Brad Walker commend these Deputies and Detectives for their work and many hours spent on these cases.

A tip of the Urban Cowboy hat

Being raised in Ferriday hardly makes you a city boy. But because he could sing and tickle the ivories, and because he opened a watering hole in Texas the size of a football field, Mickey Gilley, a son of small-town Louisiana, ended up batting leadoff in the Urban Cowboy League, which was no small deal in the rawhide-crazed 1980s.

With the sad weekend news of the passing at age 86 of the keyboard whiz, singer and approachable entertainer, our heart was heavier than a couple of barroom bouncers sitting on top a honkytonk piano.

I sort of got to meet Mickey Gilley (somehow you have to say his whole name — “Mickey” or “Gilley” doesn’t sound right) a half-dozen years ago when he played at Squire Creek Country Club in Choudrant. I say “got to meet” but really all I did was take a picture of him and my spousal unit, who he was a bit taken by. They talked and hugged and I took some pictures and they carried on and I got out of the way and went looking for a place to sit down. I’m used to this.

He was a nice man and his picture hangs in her office, along with a lot of other pictures of her and other people I almost sort of got to meet until they met her.

Speaking of women, the 1980s were about Urban Cowgirls as much as they were about cowboys. Country was cool. Ropers and hats and belt buckles the size of saucers. Your friends who usually listened to nothing but hard rock suddenly knew all the words to Lookin’ for Love.

It vanished of course, as all good things do, and now what passes for country music is gut bucket drivel. The Urban Cowboy craze was the last great run country music had. We have been lucky that a George Strait or Brad Paisley have surfaced since, but I’m afraid that the days of Mickey Gilley and Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings are gone, lost as a dozen of your old worn out bandanas.

And so, with our felt Stetson over our heart, we salute a time gone by with the Top 10 Mickey Gilley Songs, According To Me.

10. Room Full of Roses: “I just want my arms around you…”

9. Overnight Sensation: “She’s an overnight sensation, she’s an open invitation…” Mickey Gilley could not quite figure this girl out.

8. Window Up Above: Couldn’t figure this one either. Heartbreak City.

7. Don’t The Girls All Get Prettier At Closing Time: EVERYBODY knew the words to this monster hit.

6. Stand By Me: One of Mickey Gilley’s classic covers, along with …

5. True Love Ways, and

4. You Don’t Know Me

3. Object of My Affection: Lots of good bluesy “boogie woogie” piano here.

2. Power of Positive Drinking: And here too.

1. It’s a Headache Tomorrow (Or A Heartache Tonight): “No matter which one you choose, you loose…” Hurts me. One of the best songs of the Urban Cowboy era, a chapter of which closes with the passing of Mickey Gilley.

Contact Teddy at

Units respond to two recent accidents and one car fire

The North Sabine Fire Department was dispatched to a one vehicle MVA that went off into lake on Hwy 1215 on May 8 at approximately 2:56 pm. No injuries were reported. Units on the scene included: rescue 1 (Zwolle), 103 (duty crew), 106 (Zwolle), and the NSFD Dive team, which was on standby for rescue and assisted with the recovery of the vehicle from the lake.

At approximately 6:15 the same day, NSFD was dispatched to a one vehicle MVA that went off the roadway on Hwy. 191 at Fisherman Warf Road with injuries reported. NSFD, SPSO and Med Express, Rescue 1 (Zwolle), 103 ( duty crew), and Engine 6 (Union Springs) were on the scene.

Multiple South Sabine Fire Department Units and volunteers responded to a single vehicle car fire on May 9 just north of Florien. The vehicle was traveling in the South bound lane when it caught fire. The driver was able to steer the car onto the shoulder of the road and all occupants exited with no reported injuries. Responding units included PegLeg Rescue, Florien Pumper, and Florien Tanker.

Two separate crashes in Sabine, Grant Parish leave two people dead

Sabine Parish – Louisiana State Police Troop E responded to a fatal crash on May 7 at approximately 6:30 pm on JaBush Road. This crash claimed the life of 11-year-old Saylor Gatti of Zwolle.

The initial investigation revealed a 2021 Yamaha Viking Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV), driven by Gatti, was westbound on JaBush Road.  For reasons still under investigation, Gatti lost control of the vehicle which caused it to overturn. This action ejected Gatti and her three juvenile passengers from the vehicle.

Gatti, who was not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene by the Sabine Parish Coroner’s Office. One juvenile passenger, who was not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital. Two additional juvenile passengers, who also were not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained no injuries.

Routine toxicology samples were obtained and submitted for analysis. The crash remains under investigation.

Grant Parish – Louisiana State Police Troop E responded to a two-vehicle fatal crash on May 7 at approximately 8:45 pm on U.S. Highway 165 at Louisiana Highway 3130. This crash claimed the life of a 14-year-old juvenile passenger.

The initial investigation revealed a 2006 Toyota Tacoma, driven by a juvenile, was westbound on Louisiana Highway 3130. As the Toyota approached the intersection of U.S. Highway 165, the juvenile failed to stop at the stop sign before proceeding. As a result, the Toyota entered the northbound travel lanes of U.S. Highway 165 and was struck by a northbound 2022 Hyundai. This action caused the Toyota to overturn onto its roof ejecting two passengers. 

At the time of the crash, the juvenile driver was transporting six juvenile passengers. Four of the six juvenile passengers, who were not restrained, sustained moderate injuries and were transported to a local hospital. One juvenile passenger, who was not restrained, sustained severe injuries and was transported to a local hospital. One juvenile passenger, who was not restrained, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene by Grant Parish Coroner’s Office. The juvenile driver, who was not restrained, sustained moderate injuries and was transported to a local hospital. The driver of the Hyundai and three passengers, who all were restrained, sustained moderate injuries and were transported to a local hospital.

Routine toxicology samples were obtained and submitted for analysis. The crash remains under investigation.

Louisiana State Police would like to take this opportunity to remind/inform motorists that properly wearing your seat belt is one of the most important decisions that a motorist can make. While not all crashes are survivable, proper use of seat belts can greatly decrease an occupant’s chance of death and may greatly reduce the extent of injury. Always ensuring every occupant is properly restrained can often mean the difference between life and death.

In 2022, Troop E has investigated 16 fatal crashes resulting in 17 deaths.

ATV crash on JaBush Road takes life of 11-year-old

Sheriff Aaron Mitchell sadly reported on May 7 at approximately 6:30 p.m., Sabine Parish Sheriff Deputies and Louisiana State Police Troop E responded to a fatal crash on JaBush Road. This crash claimed the life of 11-year-old Saylor Gatti of Zwolle.

The initial investigation revealed a 2021 Yamaha Viking Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV), driven by Gatti, was westbound on JaBush Road. For reasons still under investigation, Gatti lost control of the vehicle which caused it to overturn. This action ejected Gatti and her three juvenile passengers from the vehicle.

Gatti, who was not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene by the Sabine Parish Coroner’s Office.

One juvenile passenger, who was not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital. Two additional juvenile passengers, who also were not restrained or wearing a helmet, sustained no injuries.

Routine toxicology samples were obtained and submitted for analysis. The crash remains under investigation by the Louisiana State Police.