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Month: December 2019

Slidell Man Gets 49½ Years In Prison For Sexual Battery of a Juvenile



Slidell Man Gets 49½ Years In Prison For Sexual Battery of a Juvenile


COVINGTON- District Attorney Warren Montgomery reports that Charles Morgan, 59, of Slidell, has been sentenced as a multiple offender to 49½ years in prison for sexual battery of a juvenile under 13.

Morgan went to trial and was found guilty by a St. Tammany Parish jury on Aug. 29, 2019. Morgan sexually abused a boy on multiple occasions over several years. The victim revealed the abuse to a parent in August 2014, and the parent notified law enforcement. The Slidell Police Department investigated the case, and Morgan was ultimately arrested and charged.

Assistant District Attorneys Luke Lancaster and Tiffany Dover prosecuted the case. District Judge Richard Swartz, Jr., presided over it and sentenced Morgan on Dec. 11 as a multiple offender. Morgan has prior felony convictions for possession of cocaine and methamphetamine, as well as multiple DWI convictions.

Three Mississippians Plead Guilty In Robbery, Fatal Shooting of Bogalusa Store Owner


Dec. 13, 2019

Three Mississippians Plead Guilty In Robbery, Fatal Shooting of Bogalusa Store Owner

FRANKLINTON—District Attorney Warren Montgomery reports that Levi Lee, 17, of Tylertown, Miss., and Lance Rouse, 25, of Picayune, Miss., pleaded guilty Wednesday (Dec. 11) in the shooting death of a convenience store owner during the robbery of his store in Bogalusa last year.

Lee pleaded guilty, as charged, to second degree murder and two counts of armed robbery and was sentenced by District Judge William H. Burris to life in prison. Rouse pleaded guilty to manslaughter and two counts of armed robbery, and Burris sentenced him to 100 years in prison—40 years on the manslaughter charge, which is to be served consecutively to 60 years on the armed robbery charges (60 years on each count to be served concurrently).

A third person, Melissa Smith, 30, of Tylertown, Miss., the girlfriend of Rouse, pleaded guilty to two counts of armed robbery and was sentenced by Burris to 20 years in prison on each count, to be served concurrently.

The crime took place on Dec. 28, 2018, when Lee and Rouse robbed the J and Z Quik store, located at Highway 21 and City Limits Road in Bogalusa, about 4:20 a.m. The business owner, Abdulrahman Taleb, was confronted at gunpoint in the parking lot and shot in his leg during a struggle with the robbers. The incident was captured on video, and the robbers were later identified as Lee and Rouse.  The victim died two days later from his injuries. Lee and Rouse got about $250 from the cash register and also robbed a customer inside the business of about $180.  A woman, later identified as Smith, waited for Lee and Rouse in the passenger side of the vehicle.

When Lee, Rouse, and Smith were identified, warrants were issued for their arrests, but they fled from the area before their apprehension. They picked up a juvenile from a Mississippi motel, and she accompanied them on their attempted escape.  Law enforcement officials in Alabama spotted the group, engaged in a vehicle pursuit of them, and ultimately arrested them.

The Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office, which investigated the case, was able to recover one of the shotguns and pieces of the other one.

Lee and Rouse also are each facing two additional aggravated burglary charges in St. Tammany Parish. They are accused of entering a Covington home late one night just days before the Bogalusa robbery and holding a woman at gunpoint in her bedroom while they stole her valuables, including two shotguns. The shotguns matched the description of those used in the Bogalusa robbery.

Additionally, Lee pleaded guilty to aggravated arson for setting a fire in the Bogalusa jail, and Burris sentenced him to an additional 20 years in prison. That time is to be served concurrent to his life sentence.

Assistant District Attorney Iain Dover prosecuted this case. The victim’s wife and daughter were consulted and agreed to the terms of the plea, and both gave impact statements before Burris during the hearing.

Grand Jury Indicts Covington Man On Murder Charges in Mandeville Police Shooting


December 4, 2019

Grand Jury Indicts Covington Man On Murder Charges in Mandeville Police Shooting

COVINGTON—District Attorney Warren Montgomery reports that a St. Tammany Parish grand jury indicted Mark E. Spicer, Jr., 21, of Covington, Wednesday (Dec. 4) with first degree murder, attempted first degree murder, and three additional charges in a shooting that killed Mandeville Police Department Captain Vincent Liberto, Jr., and wounded a fellow officer.

Spicer also was indicted on charges of aggravated flight from an officer, obstruction of justice by tampering with evidence, and illegal possession of stolen firearms. He is accused of shooting Liberto and Officer Ben Cato as they attempted to make a traffic stop at the exit ramp from Causeway Boulevard to Louisiana Highway 22.

Liberto was a decorated U.S. Marine combat veteran who worked nearly 30 years in law enforcement, including 25 years at the Mandeville Police Department.

The investigation into the shooting was conducted by the Louisiana State Police with the assistance of local law enforcement agencies. “On behalf of the Mandeville Police Department, I would like to personally thank the Louisiana State Police for the hundreds of investigative hours they have put into detailing the events surrounding Captain Liberto’s murder,” Mandeville Police Chief Gerald Sticker said. “Their objectivity and consummate professionalism throughout this investigation is to be commended. As we enter the next phase in our pursuit of justice for Captain Vincent Liberto Jr. and his family, I am equally confident in the capabilities and resolve of our District Attorney’s Office. My department, my community, and I all continue to stand with the Liberto family and will do so through final adjudication, no matter the length of time it may take.”

Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing, Chief of Trials, presented the case to the grand jury and will prosecute it, along with Criminal Division Chief Collin Sims.