Voters oust New Roads mayor in wake of controversies exposed by Nakamoto
NEW ROADS - A mayor who was the focus of multiple WBRZ Investigative Unit reports over his alleged misuse of taxpayer money was voted out of office Tuesday.
Cornell Dukes, the incumbent mayoral candidate in New Roads, lost out to newcomer Theron Smith, who netted 1,620 out of 2,455 total votes cast.
Voter turnout for the New Roads election was much higher than the statewide average. While Louisiana reported a statewide turnout of roughly 46 percent, more than 70 percent of New Roads voters showed up at the polls.
In 2021, WBRZ's Investigative Unit uncovered Dukes was using New Roads police detail for private use. After WBRZ's story, two high-ranking police officers were fired even though the department was plagued with major staffing shortages.
Documents obtained by Chief Investigator Chris Nakamoto show Dukes racked up $24,000 in bills, paid out of taxpayer money, while he was being driven around.
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