State trooper famous on social media placed on leave after being involved in hit-and-run boating crash
BATON ROUGE - Louisiana State Police placed Trooper Justin Chiasson on leave this month for his involvement in a hit-and-run boating crash that left a person injured.
Chiasson is an internet sensation who has millions of followers under the name Stalekracker.
Chiasson was on a boat in July with Bryan Nolan as the driver. Their boat hit another boat in Assumption Parish and the pair fled the scene, according to investigators. At the time, an off-duty Assumption Parish deputy came to the aid of the boaters that were hit by Nolan. That deputy radioed for help and law enforcement intercepted Chiasson and Nolan as they tried to get away.
The WBRZ Investigative Unit confirmed Chiasson never called for help or reported the wreck after it happened.
Nolan was arrested and charged with DWI and hit and run. Ten days later, he was arrested again and charged with negligent injuring, and two counts of careless operation of a watercraft.
"It was the scariest moment of my life," said Jodi Sheets, a passenger on the boat that was hit. "We saw the vessel coming, and it was almost like I could see his face, and it kept getting bigger and bigger. It was in slow motion but very fast at the same time. All I could think about was I have nine people on this boat. If we all fly out, how am I going to get them back on this boat and them not drown?"
The wreck occurred in July, but Chiasson was not placed on leave until October.
"Once we initiated our administrative investigation we saw fit to put Trooper Chiasson on leave and that's where it's at now," State Police Colonel Lamar Davis said. "We are about to complete our administrative investigation, and it will go to our disciplinary review panel for review and from there we will make our decision on any discipline."
The WBRZ Investigative Unit asked Davis to explain the discrepancy.
"Again, when we check with other agencies conducting those investigations... we are not going to conduct parallel investigations," Davis said. "If there's no indication he's a threat to the public at that time, that's the info we use. If there's no information, we keep him on duty."
Davis expects their investigation to wrap up soon.
Sheets said she is a strong supporter of law enforcement, but this situation has made her second guess special favors that are given to certain people.
"If that trooper was on his boat with his wife and children and his children's friends... and I left the scene and took the vessel out of the water and was on the road in the getaway truck, and I was stopped... I would have been put in jail that night. There's no doubt in my mind, no doubt in my mind," Sheets said.
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