Sunday, May 19 2013 5:58 PM EDT2013-05-19 21:58:26 GMT
Source: Louisiana State Police
Authorities are urging motorists to avoid I-10 West and East bound at mile marker 25 due to a tanker truck on fire. Fire crews are still working to extinguish flames on an 18-wheel oil tanker. LouisianaMore >>
Louisiana State Police is investigating an oil tanker tractor fire on Interstate 10 that caused major traffic delays Sunday afternoon. More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 9:05 PM EDT2013-05-18 01:05:04 GMT
The Southwest Louisiana Tea Party movement began picking up steam in 2009 as members from throughout the five parish area began gathering for rallies and becoming more visible and involved in local governmentMore >>
The Southwest Louisiana Tea Party movement began picking up steam in 2009 as members from throughout the five-parish area began gathering for rallies and becoming more visible and involved in local government and the political scene.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 8:55 PM EDT2013-05-18 00:55:58 GMT
An arrest has been made in the 1962 death of Mary Horton Vail. Vail was found dead in the Calcasieu River in October 1962, her husband, Felix Vail, claimed she was the victim of a boating accident. TheMore >>
Mary Horton Vail was found dead in the Calcasieu River in October 1962. Her husband, Felix Vail, claimed she was the victim of a boating accident.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 6:17 PM EDT2013-05-17 22:17:04 GMT
Friday marks the anniversary of the first woman reported missing in the Jeff Davis Eight case. On May 17, 2005, 28-year-old Loretta Chaisson Lewis went missing. Three days later, her body was found floatingMore >>
Friday marks the anniversary of the first woman reported missing in the Jeff Davis Eight case.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 5:47 PM EDT2013-05-17 21:47:38 GMT
More than 825 students - the largest graduating class in McNeese State University history - are expected to receive degrees at the university's spring commencement ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 18,More >>
More than 825 students - the largest graduating class in McNeese State University history - are expected to receive degrees at the university's spring commencement ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday at Burton Coliseum.More >>
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LAFAYETTE, LA (WAFB) -
The man investigators say is responsible for the disappearance of UL-Lafayette student Mickey Shunick is scheduled to go before a grand jury in Lafayette on July 18.
Brandon Lavergne, 33, a convicted sex offender, is charged with first-degree murder and aggravated kidnapping.
Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft said evidence in the case suggests Shunick is dead. However, he added her body has not been found. Shunick was last seen on May 19 while riding her bike home in Lafayette.
Craft said a burned truck that was discovered near Houston, TX in June was later found to be registered to Lavergne.
The Louisiana State Police arrested Lavergne during a traffic stop on July 5 in Lafayette. He was taken into custody on an unrelated charge. Troopers said he failed to register as a sex offender from a case dating back to 2000. In that case, he was charged with aggravated sexual battery.
Craft said after being arrested by state police Lavergne was brought the Lafayette Police Department and, during initial questioning, Lavergne requested an attorney and refused to answer any further questions.
Lavergne is an offshore worker. He had been working offshore for the past two weeks just prior to his arrest police said.
Investigators spent several hours searching a home in the Lawtell area on July 5. Lawtell is located in St. Landry Parish, along US 190 just west of Opelousas. St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz confirmed the search of the home was related to the Shunick case.
Surveillance video from a business showed Shunick riding her bike home on May 19. It also showed a white truck in the area at the time. Craft said police were able to identify the truck found in Texas as being the same truck shown in that surveillance video.
Shunick's bicycle was found in a swampy area at the Whiskey Bay exit off I-10 eight days after she disappeared. Police said the bicycle had damage consistent with it being hit by a vehicle. Craft said his detectives have evidence showing Lavergne was around the Whiskey Bay near the time that bike was discovered.
"We can place his vehicle in that area at that time," Craft said.
He would not give further details. However, Lavergne's cell phone was confiscated at the time of his arrest. Police frequently use cell phone records to determine if a suspect's cell phone was in contact with cell phone towers in a particular area at a particular time.
At the time of his arrest, Lavergne was driving a white pickup that is the same model as the one he previously owned. Craft said records show Lavergne purchased another truck, almost identical to the first, after Shunick disappeared.
Shunick search called off in Whiskey Bay Search intensifies for missing bike riderMissing student's bike foundCrews search area where missing woman's bicycle foundFind Mickey Now: The search continueMore>>