WBRZ http://www.wbrz.com/ WBRZ Top Story Top Story en-us Copyright 2017, WBRZ. All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Thu, 19 Oct 2017 HH:10:ss GMT Synapse CMS 10 WBRZ http://www.wbrz.com/ 144 25 Wife of man killed in rural shooting spree thanks 'angel' that came to the rescue http://www.wbrz.com/news/wife-of-man-killed-in-rural-shooting-spree-thanks-angel-that-came-to-the-rescue/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/wife-of-man-killed-in-rural-shooting-spree-thanks-angel-that-came-to-the-rescue/ Top Story Wed, 18 Oct 2017 12:36:19 PM Trey Schmaltz Wife of man killed in rural shooting spree thanks 'angel' that came to the rescue

PRIDE – The wife of one of the victims in a series of random, rural shootings north of Baton Rouge took to Facebook to thank a good Samaritan who tried to revive her husband after the attack a month ago.

Former BREC official Carroll Breeden was gunned down in his front yard in September. Detectives linked him to alleged killer Ryan Sharpe.
Breeden's wife D'Ann and her grandson found him bleeding to death after being shot near the road. The pair worked to keep him alive as cars drove by until one stopped, D'Ann Breeden posted on Facebook this week.

“I was hysterical. Many cars passed and I know they must have seen us but no one stopped. Finally, one car passed turned around and came back to help. It was a young lady with her two-year-old son. She came to our aid and followed instructions from 911. She worked tirelessly and stayed with me and [my grandson] until emergency personnel and law enforcement arrived,” Breeden wrote.

The woman didn't leave the family's side – staying with them until others arrived to provide support.

D'Ann Breeden said she had no idea who the woman was until the mystery woman showed up at her front door Monday.

“ I answered my doorbell and there she was. Oh, how thrilled I was to see her and to be able to tell her how very much I appreciate all that she did on that horrific evening.”

Breeden said the woman is Christie Brown, a Baker Walmart employee, and wants the world to know of her heroic actions and support.

“She is my angel,” Breeden said. “With all the evil around us, there are angels among us, and Christie is surely one.”

“People need to hear about Christie Brown and all she did,” she wrote.

Sharpe, the accused killer, is in jail and awaiting a grand jury hearing.

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1,000+ convicts set to walk free on November 1 http://www.wbrz.com/news/1-000-convicts-set-to-walk-free-on-november-1/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/1-000-convicts-set-to-walk-free-on-november-1/ Top Story Wed, 18 Oct 2017 4:26:04 PM Chris Nakamoto 1,000+ convicts set to walk free on November 1

BATON ROUGE- Upwards of 1500 prisoners are set to walk free on November 1, 2017 as part of a prison reform package that sailed through the legislature this year.

The point of the Justice Reinvestment Act was to decrease the number of people incarcerated by reducing non-violent offenders. That in turn would also create a cost savings to the state of nearly $250 million dollars over the next ten years.

However, the WBRZ Investigative Unit found several of the offenders that will walk on November 1, 2017 are actually violent. 

Joshua Weatherspoon was arrested for second-degree murder in 2004 in Ascension Parish. It happened after a 21-year old was found dead near a rest stop in Sorrento. At trial, Weatherspoon got a deal for testifying against others, and was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder. He was sentenced to 30 years for his crime in 2007. But, after serving ten years, he's set to walk in two weeks.

"You see some individuals and wonder, one of them is doing 30 years in prison for conspiracy to commit first-degree murder," District Attorney Ricky Babin said. "He served ten and is getting ready to be cut loose."

Babin says of the 24 set to be released from his district, at least five are violent offenders. There's nothing anyone can do to block the release. Multiple other District Attorneys across Louisiana are in the same boat.

"The fear is there are people who are being released from prison that have served a fraction of their time," Babin said. "Part of what we do is not about the defendant, but is protecting the community from the defendant. That's been shortened so we feel there's going to be an increased risk."

Babin is not alone. In East Baton Rouge Parish, District Attorney Hillar Moore estimates hundreds of inmates will be turned loose on November 1. The stats don't look good for these offenders. According to Moore, nationally speaking, half of all offenders released from prison reoffend.

"If you are going to do this the right way, you've got to supervise and help these people," Moore said. "We dont' have the infrastructure for that. Texas did similar things, but pre-invested $40 million and got ready for the day to happen. I'm not sure we're there."

According to the state, extreme oversight and a careful review is made of each offender's record. The state also claims only non-violent offenders are being allowed out. But, that goes against what DA Ricky Babin says, as one of his offenders set to be released participated in a murder.

Carolyn Stapleton has dedicated the majority of her life to crime victims rights. She's troubled for the victims, especially with all the deals that are cut in courts everyday.

"The crime they committed is not the crime they were sentenced to," Stapleton said. "85 percent of the time, a plea bargain is involved. You can have a very violent person and plea it down. An attempted murder can be an aggravated battery which does not indicate what they did."

Stapleton says, she brought up that issue before lawmakers this year and fought the legislation as it sailed through the Capitol. But, with Louisiana having the highest incarceration rate in the nation,  the justice reinvestment program was passed designed to change that. The program is expected to reduce the prison population by ten percent and save about $262 million over the next ten years. The law was passed this year. District Attorneys across the state say the odds are great that they will see these inmates who are set free... again.

"My question will be what type of supervision will these folks be given," Moore asked. "What type of work has been done with them prior to their release to ensure they have all the tools not to reoffend?"

"Overwhelmingly, I haven't talked to a District Attorney yet that is happy with this and doesn't have some fear about what's about to happen," Babin said.

According to Babin and Moore, nearly 96 percent of the people convicted in the United States receive some type of plea deal. The state says the inmates that are being released are participating in re-entry programs. Crime victims advocates say, victims need to register with Louisiana's Victim Notification System if they haven't done so...in order to be notified of when offenders are released.

You can be register online by clicking HERE.


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'Personal writings' of accused racially-motivated killer taken during search of home http://www.wbrz.com/news/personal-writings-of-accused-racially-motivated-killer-taken-during-search-of-home/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/personal-writings-of-accused-racially-motivated-killer-taken-during-search-of-home/ Top Story Wed, 18 Oct 2017 4:19:12 PM Trey Schmaltz 'Personal writings' of accused racially-motivated killer taken during search of home

BATON ROUGE – Investigators confiscated the “personal writings” of accused racially-motivated killer Kenneth Gleason during a search of his home.

Gleason is accused in the shooting deaths of two black men and also for opening fire on the home of African American neighbors in September. Gleason, who is white, lives on Sandy Ridge Drive.

Gleason is jailed on murder and other charges. He was arrested September 19.

      > WATCH: WBRZ was the only media outlet to obtain video of Gleason's apperance before a judge after his arrest.  Watch the story HERE.

Investigators took the notes – which were contained in a “green notebook” - along with seven sheets of loose leaf paper. The search warrant does not indicate what was written on the paper, although a source previously said a copy of an Adolf Hitler speech was found at the home.

The search warrant also reports various samples of DNA and other items related to the case against Gleason were found at the home.

Gleason is accused in the deaths of Bruce Cofield and Donald Smart, an employee at a popular LSU-area restaurant.

No one was hurt in the gunfire at Gleason's neighbor's home. But, bullet holes were left in in the door and furniture inside. 

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Details released about confession, matching bullets in deadly shooting spree http://www.wbrz.com/news/details-released-about-confession-matching-bullets-in-deadly-shooting-spree/ http://www.wbrz.com/news/details-released-about-confession-matching-bullets-in-deadly-shooting-spree/ Top Story Wed, 18 Oct 2017 1:12:24 PM Trey Schmaltz Details released about confession, matching bullets in deadly shooting spree

CLINTON – The arrest report filed in East Feliciana for Ryan Sharpe shows how detectives determined him as the suspect in the deaths of three men and the injuring of a fourth over a few weeks that put the region on edge.

Sharpe confessed, documents show, to the shootings of all four men. Investigators said he shot two of the men from a moving car.

Detectives also wrote in the arrest report, a shotgun taken from Sharpe's home matched two of the shootings.

Sharpe remains in jail.  Charges against him are filed in East Baton Rouge and East Feliciana since shootings happened in both parishes. 

Read the arrest report below:

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