Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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  • City's blight battle littered with bureaucracy Play Video

    April 10, 2018 7:14 PM

  • After lengthy discussion, BREC unanimously agrees to keep Baton Rouge Zoo in current location Play Video

    March 22, 2018 7:01 PM

    BATON ROUGE – After almost 3 hours of public discussion for and against the proposal to relocate the Baton Rouge Zoo, the BREC board voted unanimously to keep it in its current location. As consultants spoke about their findings supporting a move for the zoo, those against held signs... more »
  • Councilwoman calls for BREC leader's resignation after secretly-recorded conversation leaked ahead of zoo vote Play Video

    March 22, 2018 12:21 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Hours ahead of a vote by public park commissioners on moving the zoo, Metro Councilwoman Chauna Banks called for the resignation of the system's leader Carolyn McKnight. “I think it's time for her to resign,” Banks told WBRZ Thursday morning. “She's not operating in reality.” ... more »
  • In final hours, lobbying from both sides of zoo move looks like a real political fight

    March 21, 2018 3:26 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Like politicians rushing to get voters to the polls ahead of a major election, those for and against a plan to move the zoo are unleashing a flurry of political firestorms in the last 24 hours before BREC commissioners make their controversial decision. A “Save Santa... more »
  • Mayor has interviewed 3 of 5 chief candidates, will meet with all by week's end

    December 13, 2017 12:15 PM

    BATON ROUGE – The mayor has interviewed three of the five candidates vying to be the city's next police chief and interviews with the remaining two are scheduled for later this week, WBRZ learned Wednesday. Myron Daniels, Darryl Honore and Robert McGarner have met with the mayor. Between now... more »
  • WBRZ to travel with governor, La. group to Puerto Rico Monday

    October 27, 2017 6:01 PM

    BATON ROUGE – The governor will lead a group from Louisiana to storm-ravaged Puerto Rico next week. WBRZ will be among those traveling with the delegation to capture the stories of Louisianans assisting in the recovery effort. The team will arrive on Puerto Rico Monday. Gov. John... more »
  • State Police releases punishment for 4 troopers who took side trip last year

    October 2, 2017 6:38 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Four state troopers have been disciplined for a questionable road trip in 2016. Previous reports highlighted a trip to a law enforcement conference in San Diego included a lengthy side excursion to the Grand Canyon and a Las Vegas resort and casino. The drive cost the... more »
  • In scandal over chartered flights, Thomas Price resigns from federal post

    September 29, 2017 4:42 PM

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Amid a scandal over expensive, private flights, Health and Human Services Thomas Price resigned from his position in the Trump White House. “...Price offered his resignation earlier today and the President accepted,” the White House said in a statement emailed to media around 4 o'clock Baton... more »
  • Investigative Unit: Officers on leave allowed to work extra duty Play Video

    September 28, 2017 6:19 PM

    BATON ROUGE- The Baton Rouge Police Department changed its policy on who could be assigned extra duty after the WBRZ Investigative Unit found officers on administrative leave were still collecting payment from extra duty. Among those was Blane Salamoni, the officer who is tied to the shooting death of... more »
  • Group against moving Baton Rouge zoo will take issue to court

    August 4, 2017 5:15 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Opponents of moving the zoo from its North Baton Rouge location said at a news conference late Friday, they are taking the matter to court to collect documents tied to meetings and correspondence. An anti-move group spearheaded by Metro Councilwoman Chauna Banks-Daniel has fought BREC over... more »
  • EBR sheriff highlights trying year during association gathering

    August 4, 2017 1:06 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Sheriff Sid Gautreaux reflected on the trying year as he handed over the reigns of the Louisiana Sheriff's Association recently. Gautreaux was the 71st president of the organization and completed his tenure as the head of the group – serving during a year of tragedy and... more »
  • BRAVE contracts tied to mayor's administration suspended Play Video

    August 1, 2017 3:29 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Nine contracts associated with the BRAVE program have been suspended, WBRZ Chief Investigator Chris Nakamoto has learned. The contracts in question are tied to controversial deals made with Mayor Sharon Weston Broome's administration. The contracts are part of a group that have been questioned since contract... more »
  • City official wants EBR Council on Aging removed from spending tax money

    May 18, 2017 3:55 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Metro Councilman Dwight Hudson will ask his colleagues for strict oversight of the recently-passed property tax that will fund elderly affairs operations through the EBR Council on Aging. Hudson told WBRZ's Chief Investigator, Chris Nakamoto, Thursday, he filed an agenda item for an upcoming meeting that... more »
  • Out-of-town reporters try to show Baton Rouge 'on edge'

    May 2, 2017 11:45 AM

    BATON ROUGE – For the fourth time in less than a year, this usually unassuming city along the Mississippi has the attention of the nation. National news outlets and media from New Orleans are zeroing in on the atmosphere here, as speculation continues on when the Justice Department will... more »
  • Former Central official accused of forgery turns self in, bonds out of jail Play Video

    April 18, 2017 7:46 PM

    CENTRAL - T he former c hief administrative officer of Central has bonded out out of jail after he turned himself in for forgery and false public records charges Wednesday. Barrow turned himself in after the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office obtained a warrant for his arrest Tuesday in... more »
  • Council on Aging gives vague response to demand for an inquiry after WBRZ reports

    April 18, 2017 3:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE – The board of directors of the East Baton Rouge Council on Aging promises stricter oversight following numerous reports by the WBRZ News 2 Investigative Unit. WBRZ was first to report issues at the Council on Aging surrounding a deceased woman naming Council on Aging employees in... more »
  • Video shows use of force by officers; Internal Affairs investigation underway Play Video

    April 13, 2017 5:05 PM

    BATON ROUGE – There is an internal investigation following Baton Rouge Police using force to subdue someone in custody outside a South Baton Rouge convenience store this week. The WBRZ Investigative Unit confirmed through police there is an investigation underway, though, police said there have been no complaints filed... more »
  • Controversial councilman quits, moves away after flood

    March 28, 2017 9:55 AM

    DENHAM SPRINGS – Councilman Chris Davis resigned from his seat on the city's governing body. Davis resigned, he said in a letter, because damage to his family's home after the August flood was too great. Davis lived on Oakwood Drive, off Range south of I-12. The are was inundated... more »
  • Edwards says wetlands needs priority over roads in request to federal government

    March 8, 2017 10:34 AM

    BATON ROUGE – One of the governor's five priority projects for coastal protection he's asked the president to consider under an executive order is a project to re-establish natural freshwater in Maurepas Swamp. The swamp project could cost as much as $187 million. It'd divert freshwater through a diversion... more »
  • Getting EBR public schools back to normal will be expensive

    February 16, 2017 6:25 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The East Baton Rouge Parish School System is working to get as many schools as possible back to some sort of normal following the August flood. At a school board meeting Thursday evening, members were scheduled to be briefed on the first stages of six projects.... more »
  • Hawaiian, Delta top on-time ratings for US airlines

    January 17, 2017 12:34 PM

    Here are the government's rankings of the leading U.S. airlines and their on-time performance for November. The federal government counts a flight as on time if it arrives within 14 minutes of schedule. 1. Hawaiian Airlines, 91.5 percent 2. Delta Air Lines, 91.4 percent 3. Alaska Airlines, 88.0 percent 4.... more »
  • Front doors of capitol still closed due to failing facade

    January 5, 2017 4:48 PM

    BATON ROUGE – The State Capitol's front doors will remain closed will into the summer since work to repair falling masonry above won't start until after lawmakers end their annual meeting in June. WBRZ's political reporter, Mark Armstrong , tweeted Thursday the front steps and entrance remain closed months... more »
  • FBI raids Hammond Police, local sheriff's office Thursday Play Video

    December 15, 2016 12:59 PM

    HAMMOND – Federal agents with the FBI raided the Hammond Police Department and Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office Thursday afternoon. According to Jeffrey Sallet, agents conducted "multiple court-authorized searches" inside the two offices around 12:20 p.m. Thursday. Officers with the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Department of Justice were also... more »
  • WBRZ hosts first live TV debate for EBR Mayor-President Play Video

    November 29, 2016 7:44 PM

    BATON ROUGE – WBRZ hosted an hour-long mayoral debate Tuesday. The two candidates vying for the seat, State Senator Bodi White and former State Senator Sharon Weston Broome, fielded questions ranging from the shooting death of Alton Sterling to dealing with traffic and the long recovery following the August... more »
  • Grand jury hearing involving Ascension president postponed until Friday

    November 14, 2016 4:56 PM

    GONZALES - The Louisiana Attorney General's Office will take over a bribery investigation involving Ascension Parish President Kenny Matassa. Ascension Parish District Attorney Ricky Babin told Chris Nakamoto , the chief investigator of WBRZ's Investigative Unit , the A.G. will handle the case going forward because Babin's office has... more »
  • Click here for election results

    November 8, 2016 12:21 PM

    BATON ROUGE - WBRZ is covering around seventy races as the country votes for president and regional elections are decided. State-wide, voters are electing a U.S. Senator and members of the U.S. House of Representatives along with constitutional amendments. Locally, voters are making decisions on city and parish leaders... more »
  • Council agrees naming rights for 'Raising Cane's River Center' Play Video

    October 26, 2016 6:49 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The city's downtown performing arts, entertainment and convention space will likely be known - officially - as the Raising Cane's River Center following a vote by the Metro Council Wednesday afternoon. The mayor's office and River Center managers told the council at a meeting a group... more »
  • There is a shortage of FEMA trailers in La. Play Video

    October 14, 2016 12:46 PM

    CENTRAL - State and Louisiana-elected federal leaders are frustrated with word that FEMA is scrambling to find more Mobile Housing Units; the common house trailers that have been towed to flood victims across the region. Central Mayor Jr. Shelton told WBRZ Friday, a n early-morning meeting with FEMA is... more »
  • Jay Dardenne hospitalized following chest pains this weekend Play Video

    October 10, 2016 11:39 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The state's budget czar was hospitalized with chest pains this weekend, WBRZ learned Monday. Jay Dardenne, the Commissioner of Administration, said in a statement he was taken to the hospital Saturday. Doctors found he had blockages. Dardenne said when he woke up Saturday, he felt... more »
  • $146 million paid so far in ongoing flood recovery

    October 3, 2016 12:09 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana has received $146 million in disaster assistance from FEMA, the federal government announced Monday. The funds are for the state to use to reimburse local entities for expenses related to response and recovery efforts as a result of August’s severe storms and floods. The... more »
  • WEB EXTRA: Bus rider moves so he won't have to ride CATS anymore

    September 29, 2016 3:28 PM

    BATON ROUGE – A former bus rider said Thursday he became so frustrated with spotty service on the taxpayer funded CATS, he moved. In the inner circles of the often-criticized management team of Capital Area Transit System leaders, Frank Lanasa might be widely disliked. Routinely, Lanasa sends emails to... more »
  • CATS will shutter riderless Garden District route

    September 19, 2016 4:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Tuesday, the board overseeing the public bus company agreed to shut down its Garden District trolley service. CATS created the route through the historic neighborhood about 18 months ago. Combustion engine buses built to look like trolleys run the route that drives through Downtown Baton Rouge,... more »
  • Walker hires attorneys in planned lawsuit over flooding

    September 19, 2016 3:23 PM

    WALKER - The city announced Monday, it hired attorneys for a planned lawsuit over the August flood. The city said Michael C. Palmintier, APLC and John Neale deGravelles, LLC of Baton Rouge will handle a possible lawsuit against state and federal government agencies related to the flood. Days after... more »
  • Edwards, other officials meet in D.C. to talk flood aid

    September 7, 2016 3:44 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and other high-ranking state elected leaders traveled to Washington, D.C., Thursday to lobby for additional flood relief. The group is scheduled to be in D.C. Thursday and Friday. Traveling with Edwards will be Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain and Lt. Governor Billy... more »
  • Jailer fired over sexual harassment complaint

    September 6, 2016 1:51 PM

    PORT ALLEN - A West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office jailer was fired following a sexual harassment complaint, WBRZ learned Tuesday. The department declined to release the former employee's name, but said an internal investigation was conducted and the jailer was released from their employment. The jailer touched another... more »
  • Q & A: Do I need to elevate my home? Play Video

    September 1, 2016 5:00 PM

    BATON ROUGE- The unnamed storm that swept through our area last month will go down as the fourth most expensive flood in the National Flood Insurance Program's history, according to Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon. A group of lawmakers gathered at the Capitol today to discuss flood recovery and response. ... more »
  • Post flood 'normal' means more traffic in BR; Road repairs underway

    August 25, 2016 4:38 PM

    BATON ROUGE – State road engineers are busy checking highways and bridges as water recedes from areas inundated by the flood last week. More than 1,400 bridges have been checked and every highway that was flooded has also been scrutinized by experts, Shawn Wilson, the head of the state... more »
  • All state offices to reopen Monday

    August 20, 2016 4:37 PM

    BATON ROUGE – State officials announced Saturday that all state offices in Louisiana will re-open Monday. According to a release from Commissioner Jay Dardenne’s office Saturday afternoon, state offices in all parishes will re-open on Aug. 22. “I thank the many state workers who have worked diligently during... more »
  • Power cut to Plaquemine overnight Thursday for repairs Play Video

    August 3, 2016 1:15 PM

    PLAQUEMINE - The entire city will be without power overnight Thursday. Power will be cut to repair a switch on a substation that feeds all of Plaquemine. The outage is due to repairs being made by Entergy, the city said in a news release, trying to avoid blame for... more »
  • New Roads mayor focus of theft, malfeasance grand jury probe Play Video

    July 29, 2016 12:18 PM

    NEW ROADS - The mayor of New Roads received a grand jury target letter , the WBRZ Investigative Unit learned. Mayor Robert Myer has been the focus of an Inspector General investigation into charges on a city credit card. The Investigative Unit found in a series of reports, at... more »
  • Scene of deadly ambush becomes memorial to officers Play Video

    July 18, 2016 11:31 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The B Quick convenience store where a man from Missouri ambushed and killed three law enforcement officers Sunday has become an emotional memorial to the victims. Monday morning, police officers from other jurisdictions prayed among flowers left at the scene. Citizens brought their children to leave... more »
  • March to Capitol, other protests Sunday in Baton Rouge Play Video

    July 10, 2016 11:20 AM

    BATON ROUGE - A youth-led march took to the streets of Baton Rouge Sunday afternoon. Louisiana Progress Action marched with a group from Wesley United Methodist Church to the State Capitol at 4 p.m. The group said it is demanding justice for Alton Sterling. Sterling was shot and killed... more »
  • Jail releases list of people booked into jail following protest overnight

    July 9, 2016 11:18 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The city police department - which has remained relatively quiet since the shooting death of Alton Sterling Tuesday - booked more than two dozen people into jail for blocking Airline Highway during a protest outside police headquarters. Just before noon, the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's... more »
  • Politicians comment on deadly officer-involved shooting

    July 5, 2016 11:08 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Mayoral candidate Sharon Weston Broome became the latest official to comment on a deadly officer-involved shooting when she issued a news release late Tuesday evening. > The NAACP called for the mayor and police chief to resign at a news conference on the steps of city hall... more »
  • Cattle were stolen from farm, left on I-12 authorities reveal

    June 28, 2016 10:29 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Eighteen stolen cattle will be returned to the owner Wednesday after the cattle were found in a trailer abandoned on the side of I-12 last week . The cattle were left on the side of I-12 eastbound near Hammond in a stolen cattle trailer. The trailer... more »
  • 'I did a terrible job,' Matassa says of how he handled employee's firing

    May 17, 2016 1:18 PM

    GONZALES - In a letter emailed to WBRZ Tuesday afternoon, Ascension Parish President Kenny Matassa apologized for his handling of an employee's termination recently. The firing of planning director Ricky Compton was the focus of a WBRZ Investigative Unit report last week . In a recording, land owner Dempsey... more »
  • Lawsuit filed over April 2015 shooting of teen by deputies

    April 27, 2016 5:17 PM

    FRENCH SETTLEMENT - An attorney for a teen injured after being shot by sheriff's deputies last year claims in a lawsuit filed Wednesday, Livingston Parish Sheriff's deputies are inadequately trained. The suit filed on behalf of Matthew Peyronnin named Sheriff Jason Ard and three sheriff's deputies in the lawsuit.... more »
  • State to require job training for food stamps

    April 21, 2016 4:32 PM

    HAMMOND - The governor said he plans to require able-bodied adults ages 18-49, who have no dependents, to get workforce training for food stamps Thursday. The new regulation would keep 47,000 people on the food stamp program if they all participate. The individuals faced being kicked off food stamps... more »
  • Mayor Holden nixes north Baton Rouge development idea Play Video

    April 20, 2016 5:11 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The mayor vetoed a proposal to create an economic development district in north Baton Rouge. Mayor Kip Holden denied the request Wednesday, citing vague language in how the development district would be organized and concern over the state's budget. Previously, the Metro Council unanimously approved the... more »
  • CATS CEO quits Tuesday; read his resignation here Play Video

    April 5, 2016 7:36 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Bob Mirabito, the often-criticized chief of the city's public transit system has resigned. Mirabito wrote to the Capital Area Transit System board, he will leave his post as CEO on May 6. Mirabito said he will return to the private sector where he is "most comfortable."... more »
  • Where's your tax refund? Details on why it's taking longer this year Play Video

    March 31, 2016 6:00 PM

    BATON ROUGE - State tax refunds are taking longer than usual for some people since the Louisiana Department of Revenue has purposely slowed the refund process down to fight fraud. Numerous people have complained to WBRZ about the time it has taken to receive refunds. People reported waiting weeks,... more »
  • Still upset about delegates, Trump says La. primary is 'bad politics'

    March 30, 2016 12:24 PM

    MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin - Presidential hopeful Donald Trump angrily discussed his disdain for the outcome of the Louisiana primary Tuesday night. Trump, along with Ted Cruz and John Kasich, participated in a cable TV political discussion. At one point during the program, Trump called the situation involving Louisiana's delegates bad... more »
  • DOTD warns of possible week-long outage of traffic data

    March 29, 2016 3:20 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A network outage will cut off traffic data along heavily congested areas of I-10 and Airline Highway, DOTD revealed Tuesday afternoon. In a tweet, state traffic officials said the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) could be down for a week starting Tuesday. The ITS is a system... more »
  • Two schools close as area deals with losses due to oil price free fall

    March 28, 2016 12:42 PM

    MORGAN CITY - An elementary school in this onetime oil rich St. Mary Parish city will close because of a significant loss in sales taxes. M.D. Shannon Elementary is one of two schools slated for closure recently. The other, J.A. Hernandez Elementary in Franklin, will also close its doors.... more »
  • Leaders avoid questions; Nakamoto escorted away in handcuffs, given summons Play Video

    March 23, 2016 3:32 PM

    WHITE CASTLE - Police detained WBRZ reporter Chris Nakamoto while Nakamoto was pursuing a story on town government operations Wednesday. Nakamoto was put in handcuffs, escorted to the police department and written a misdemeanor summons. The summons was written for an alleged violation of statute 14:63, remaining after being... more »
  • Burl Cain cleared of wrongdoing; Ex-Angola warden to hold press conference Wednesday

    March 22, 2016 5:29 PM

    ANGOLA - Allegations of wrongdoing made against former State Penitentiary Warden Burl Cain are unfounded, a multi-agency investigation revealed Tuesday afternoon. The Inspector General, State Police and Department of Corrections has spent the last few months investigating complaints that Cain acted inappropriately in his role as chief of the... more »
  • 2-vote loss, other upsets in Saturday election

    March 6, 2016 12:28 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The presidential preference primary and numerous municipal elections brought voters to polling locations across the region Saturday. Hillary Clinton ended the night the presidential primary leader for democrats. Donald Trump edged out Ted Cruz as the primary leader for republicans. Fewer than 11,000 votes separated Trump... more »
  • Bill Clinton rallies for Hillary in Baton Rouge ahead of primary Play Video

    March 3, 2016 10:58 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Former president Bill Clinton campaigned for his wife Hillary Clinton in Baton Rouge Thursday evening, just days before voters will go to the polls for Louisiana's presidental preference primary. Hearing @billclinton spent some extra time in Mississippi. Might be about 45 minutes out. #runninglate —... more »

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