LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - It was a triple murder that has for years been as a sort of specter looming over the lives of three families and the community--the 1997 murders at KK's Corner.
Thomas Frank Cisco had been found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to die but on appeal his conviction was thrown out. Finally after some five years in limbo Cisco has had his day in court.
The murders at KK's Corner went unsolved for more than a year and then-- Cisco was arrested for the killings of Stacie Reeves, Marty LeBouef and Nicole Guidry-- three young people shot to death, their bodies left in the cooler of the convenience store. Cisco was convicted and sentenced to die but on appeal granted a new trial. And more legal issues surfaced causing the case to be transferred from the Calcasieu District Attorney to the State Attorney General's office.
Now at long last Cisco has been allowed to plead guilty to three counts of manslaughter. Assistant attorney general David Caldwell says the families agreed to the plea because Cisco will spend ninety years in prison with no appeal and they may get some closure. " I think that everyone needs to understand as a result of the plea today that Thomas Cisco will die in Angola. Mrs. LeBouef and her testimony was most telling about how she has been in a prison without bars for this past fourteen years and so part of why this was done to allow these families and this parish some sense of closure."
As judge Robert Wyatt prepared to pass sentence family members of the victims were allowed to address Cisco-- they held nothing back as they shared with him the anguish and misery inflicted upon their families. Marty LeBouef's mother Janila sobbed as she told him how her grief had rendered her dysfunctional and mentally ill. She says she's always wanted to speak to Cisco. "I have no hatred towards him in fact I feel sorry for him. I have to forgive him in order for God to forgive me and I do, I forgive him."
Janila's sister Patsy Young says the death of Marty has changed family members lives forever, especially for Janila: "She has screamed til she's almost passed out to the point where I thought she was going to have a stroke. She's been in mental wards. She's under psychiatric care and has been ever since this happened. I think this day probably helped her more than anything that she actually got to talk to Cisco face to face and tell him how she felt."
The victims' family members also expressed their disgust that Cisco has yet to tell who else was involved in the murders. Caldwell says they are still hopeful that one day whoever else was involved can be brought to justice.
Prosecutors say Cisco won't become eligible for release from prison until he is 104 years old. He's 41 years old right now and will be given credit for time served since the murders.