Man found guilty in beating of newspaper delivery driver

Published: Sep. 1, 2022 at 4:02 PM CDT
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Vernon Parish, LA (KPLC) - A DeRidder man was found guilty of the beating of a newspaper delivery driver last year.

A Vernon Parish jury found Douglas Paul James guilty of second-degree battery in a December 2021 attack on Woodie Blanks. Sentencing is set for Oct. 5.

Blanks was delivering newspapers for the American Press when he was attacked around 3 a.m. on Catfish Hut Road. The American Press reported that Blanks was left partially blind.

Blanks got out of the vehicle to hand-deliver the paper to a resident who had mobility issues when he was attacked.

The American Press reported that James argued that he mistook Blanks for a prowler allegedly seen on his grandfather’s property in the days before the attack.

“We are very pleased with the verdict and very happy that the jury took the time to consider all the evidence,” Vernon District Attorney Terry Lambright said.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Ronald Seastrunk. Attorney Sam Jones represented James.

Another man arrested in connection with the attack, Dillon Matthew James, has not gone to trial yet.