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Shooter of LDWF Agent Sentenced to Life in Prison

Release Date: 01/27/2016

A Monroe man convicted of two counts of attempted first degree murder on Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries agents was sentenced to life in prison today, Jan. 27 in Ouachita Parish.

Luke Jarrod Hust, 29, was sentenced by 4th District Court Judge Scott Leehy to three life sentences in prison without the benefit of parole for two counts of attempted first degree murder and one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Hust was found guilty on Dec. 3 by a jury of his peers for shooting LDWF Sgt. Scott Bullitt and shooting at another LDWF agent.

“We are thankful this case is resolved to give Sgt. Bullitt and his family some closure and that the shooter will spend the rest of his life behind bars where he belongs,” said Col. Joey Broussard, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division.  “We also want to thank the prosecutors and judge for securing the stiffest penalties possible so that Hust won’t have the chance to commit another violent crime.”

Around 6:40 p.m. on May 21 LDWF Sgt. Scott Bullitt along with another agent stopped a vehicle at the end of Buckley Hill Road near the Wham Brake Boat Launch on the Russell Sage WMA.  During the stop, Hust shot Sgt. Bullitt and at another agent before fleeing the scene into the woods.

Sgt. Bullitt was rushed to a Monroe hospital and stabilized.  Hust was captured around 11 p.m. that night.

Sgt. Bullitt was then taken to Shreveport where he successfully underwent surgery to remove the bullet and bone fragments on May 26.  Sgt. Bullitt is still rehabbing from his injuries and not yet returned to regular duty as a LDWF agent.

Sgt. Bullitt has been an LDWF agent for over five years.

District Attorney Jerry Jones was the lead prosecutor for the state.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Two Men Cited for Illegal Purchasing and Selling of Deer Meat

Release Date: 01/26/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two Louisiana men for alleged illegal deer transactions on Jan. 20 in Allen Parish.

Agents cited Charles W. Ortego, 42, of Kinder, for illegally selling deer meat and failing to comply with deer tagging regulations, and Noland Meyers, 66, of Elton, for illegally purchasing deer meat.

Agents received an anonymous tip on Jan. 13 about Ortego selling a deer to Meyers.  After making contact with Meyers, he admitted to buying two deer from Ortego for a total of $160.

Agents also made contact with Ortego who admitted to taking and selling the two deer to Meyers in Allen Parish without properly tagging the deer.

Illegally selling or purchasing deer meat brings a $500 to $750 fine and 15 to 30 days in jail.  Failing to comply with deer tagging regulations carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Ortego may also face civil restitution for the illegally taken deer totaling $3,250.

Agents involved in the case are Senior Agent Danon Maricle and Sgt. Scott Fontenot.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Agents Arrest Night Hunters in East Carroll Parish

Release Date: 01/26/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested two subjects and cited another from Morehouse Parish for alleged night hunting activity on Jan. 25.

Agents cited Charles A. Brantley, 27, of Collinston, Cassandra Barnes, 32, of Bastrop, and Danielle Brantley, of Collinston, 21, for hunting deer during illegal hours with artificial light, hunting from a public road and hunting from a moving vehicle.  Agents also cited Charles Brantley and Barnes for hunting rabbits during illegal hours.  Charles Brantley was additionally cited for criminal trespass and failing to comply with deer tagging requirements.

As a result of recent high waters along the Mississippi River deer were heavily concentrated along Hwy. 596 near Lake Providence.  Around midnight on Jan. 25, agents witnessed the trio drive back and forth along this rural stretch of highway shooting at deer and rabbits.  Agents also observed them shoot a deer and drop one of the occupants off to search for the deer.

Upon stopping the vehicle agents discovered that Charles Brantley was operating his vehicle outfitted with high intensity aftermarket lighting with Danielle Brantley and Barnes as passengers.  Agents found six freshly killed rabbits in the cargo area of the pickup.

After further investigation agents determined that Charles Brantley and his front seat passenger Cassandra Barnes were the ones shooting at deer and rabbits with Barnes the one responsible for killing the deer.  Charles Brantley was also the one that was dropped off to search for the deer on private property.

Agents seized one .22 rifle with a scope mounted light, night vision equipment, six rabbits and one antlerless deer.

Agents arrested and booked Charles Brantley and Barnes into the East Carrol Parish Detention Center.

Hunting deer during illegal hours or with artificial light carries fines between $900 and $950 and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.  Hunting from a moving vehicle carries a $250 to $500 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Failing to comply with deer tagging requirements and hunting from a public road each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail for each offense.  Criminal trespassing carries a $100 to $500 fine and up to 30 days in jail.

Civil restitution totaling $1,625 may also be imposed for the replacement value of the deer.

Agents involved in the case are Sgt. Wayne Parker and Lt. Scott Mathews.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

LEEC Special E-News Bulletin: Green Schools Tour, Leading Preschoolers in Exploration Short Courses Full

Last-minute registrants: Time is running out!

The Environmental Education State Symposium will be held February 19-20, 2016 at the Baton Rouge Marriott. Formal and non-formal educators alike are invited to come learn new information and techniques, meet with peers, and gain continuing education hours. Regular registration for the event is just $50. Register here.

Be sure to check out our Friday Short Course offerings. Get focused instruction in a 7-hour session on Friday, February 19. The short course fee is $10 - lunch included. Be sure to register soon because the short courses are filling up. Both our Leading Preschoolers in Exploration and Green Schools Tour have proved overwhelmingly popular, so registration for each is now closed. Discovering Biodiversity only has a few spots left, so don't hesitate!

For more information, visit our website http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/louisiana-environmental-education-symposium or contact Thomas Gresham tgresham@wlf.la.gov.

Goldonna Man Arrested for Illegal Weapon and Drug Possession and DWI

Release Date: 01/22/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a Goldonna man for alleged illegal drugs and weapon charges in Natchitoches Parish on Jan 17.

Agents arrested James Garner, 52, for driving while intoxicated (DWI), possession of marijuana, possession of methamphetamines, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, illegal carrying of a weapon while in possession of illegal drugs and possession of an open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle.

Agents received a call from U.S. Forestry Officers working a checkpoint on the Kisatchie National Forest about a vehicle they stopped with the driver appearing to be intoxicated.  U.S. Forestry Officer’s also located suspected meth in Garner’s pocket, a half smoked marijuana joint in the vehicle, open container of alcohol in the vehicle and a loaded .223 rifle.

After failing the standardized field sobriety test conducted by LDWF agents, Garner was placed under arrest and booked into the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center.

Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon is a felony and carries a $1,000 to $5,000 fine and 10 to 20 years in jail.  Possession of a firearm while in possession of illegal drugs carries up to a $10,000 fine and between five and 10 years of prison.  Possession of methamphetamine carries up to a $5,000 fine and five years in jail.

A DWI carries a $300 to $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.  Possession of marijuana brings up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.  Open container of alcohol in a vehicle brings a $100 fine.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Joseph Melton and Agent Devin Bryant along with U.S. Forestry Officer Jason La Mons and Officer Edward Jones.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

LEEC Special E-News Bulletin: Leading Preschoolers in Exploration Short Course Full, Last Day for Early Birds

Today is the last day to get the Early Bird registration rate of just $35 for the Environmental Education State Symposium in Baton Rouge on February 19-20. Beginning January 23, our regular registration rate will apply.
 
This conference is not just for "Environmental Education" teachers. The wide variety of presentations will appeal to anyone providing non-formal or formal education in the fields of science, the outdoors, natural resources, and more. We in Louisiana especially love the outdoors, which is why this conference theme is Exploring the Natural World. Choose from among our many Saturday concurrent sessions - organized by grade level and chock-full of great information to bring back to your classroom or educational space.
 
Be sure to check out our Friday Short Courses, too. For just $10 (lunch included), get a full 7-hour course on a specific topic, including: Green Schools, Discovering Biodiversity, the LEEC's new Watershed Webs project, or Ocean Exploration. Leading Preschoolers in Exploration is no longer available because registration exceeded capacity. Don't wait for your short course to fill up, too. Register today!
 
Find the online registration form at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/webform/2016-louisiana-environmental-education-state-symposium.

LEEC Special E-News Bulletin: Early Bird Registration Ends Jan. 22

Early Bird Registration Ends Friday, January 22. Don't Miss Out!

Join us February 19-20, 2016 at the Baton Rouge Marriott for a plethora of fun, hands-on, environmentally-based educational lessons and activities while we show you how to "Explore the Natural World" with your students! Earn CLUs, network with educators and local scientists, and go home with great ideas for your classroom. Students LOVE applied science learning and our natural world (even the school yard) awaits exploration!

This conference is not the usual fare. We promise to inspire you with doable ideas for your classroom – even when you are not in sessions! From our science scavenger hunt to our luncheon centerpieces, we work hard to make this event entertaining and very educational. CC Lockwood, international photographer, speaker, and naturalist, will deliver the keynote address. And the fun culminates with a grand door prize consisting of a weekend stay at the state park of your choice!
Early bird registration is just $35, which includes meals. Register online here.

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