On March 18 and 19, 2021 the Lakeview Powerlifting Team competed at the LHSPLA State Championships on the ULM campus in Monroe. Emma Hatten, Destinee Britt, Zoie Britt, Jagloria Ford, Serenity Bush, Addy Seay, Evan Baker, Tanner Gardner and Derek Kirts all qualified for state at the Central Regionals in Pineville in February. These lifters worked very hard and with great perseverance to overcome the lockdowns and school closures leading up to this season. At the state meet, Tanner Gardner finished 2nd in the state in the boys 132 pound class. Emma Hatten finished 3rd in the state in the girls 97 pound class. DJ Kirts finished 5th in the state in the boys SHW class while Serenity Bush and Addy Seay finished 4th and 5th in the girls SHW class. All the lifters scored points and contributed to respectable team point totals. Coach John Tabarlet, in his third season of bringing powerlifting back to Lakeview, is trying to help his lifters look beyond state to national and world competition. He insists that the talent is present at Lakeview and within a few years, Lakeview lifters will begin to take the stage all over the USA and in every corner of the globe. He is amazed with the youth of this team and the unbelievably bright future ahead. “This group of lifters is one of the most special in my 33 years of coaching powerlifting. I have been an assistant coach on 11 national collegiate championship teams and 6 world teams at the IPF worlds. I was also the head coach of a high school national championship team in another national federation. I have coached all over the country and all over the world but I had to come to Campti, LA to find this bunch of awesome kids. They are like family to me and to each other. They are special.” The Gators plan to lift in the USAPL High School Raw State Championships in late April. This will be a chance to establish a USAPL total and put themselves on the USAPL radar. People that don’t know them yet will know them then and the opportunities to go nationwide and worldwide will soon follow. “I feel like an old man sometimes but I am an old man who knows the path and knows the people who own the path that leads to worldwide competition. I tell my lifters that right now they wear lifting shirts that read L H S. But these kids that I coach deserve to trade those in for shirts that read U S A. As long as I’m still loading bars and wrapping knees, my kids will get that chance.”

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GORUM-A Gorum man was airlifted to a Shreveport hospital following a single-vehicle crash near Gorum on Monday evening according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.

On Monday evening March 29 at approximately 7:25pm, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputies, Louisiana State Police, Natchitoches Regional Medical Center EMS, and Natchitoches Parish Fire Protection District #1 responded to NATCOM 911 Center reports of a single-vehicle crash involving injuries on La. Hwy 119 approximately 1-mile south of the Longleaf Trail Scenic Byway near Gorum, La.

Responding EMS and fire units arrived on scene shortly thereafter finding the sole occupant of the vehicle suffering from head and shoulder injuries requesting medical air support.

Air EVAC Lifeteam medical helicopter was dispatched to the scene.

Deputies say 72-year-old Charles Larry Carter of Gorum, La. was operating a 1995 Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck traveling southbound on La. Hwy 119 approximately 1 mile south of the Longleaf Trail Scenic Byway near Gorum when he apparently left the roadway on the right side then overcorrected crossing the northbound and southbound lanes. The vehicle then left the road on the left side traveling a short distance striking a tree head-on coming to a rest.

NPSO Deputies and NPFD #1 set-up a landing zone for the helicopter on La. Hwy 119 near I-49.
Carter was transported from the scene by EMS to the landing zone then airlifted by Air EVAC to an Alexandria hospital with moderate injuries.

Troopers assigned to LSP Troop-E Alexandria investigated the crash.

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CAMPTI-Four juveniles avoided serious injury while one juvenile suffered moderate injuries in a single-vehicle rollover crash on La. Hwy 480 near Campti early this morning according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.

This morning at approximately 12:46am, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputies, Louisiana State Police, and Natchitoches Regional Medical Center EMS responded to NATCOM 911 Center reports of a single-vehicle rollover crash on La. Hwy 480 near John Foster in the Campti area involving possible entrapment and injuries.

Natchitoches Parish Fire Protection Districts #3 and #9 along with NPSO Rescue were paged out to assist.

Deputies arrived on scene shortly thereafter, discovering no entrapment.

Five juveniles were in the vehicle.

One juvenile was suffering from what appeared to be moderate non-life threatening injuries, while four others were suffering from minor lacerations and bruises.

Deputies say the juvenile suffering from moderate injuries was transported from the scene to Ochsner LSU Health in Shreveport for evaluation and treatment.

Troopers assigned to LSP Troop-E investigated the crash.

The names of the juveniles are not being released.

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ICBA Chairman appoints Ken Hale to ICBPAC Committee

Washington, D.C. (March 11, 2021)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) today announced that local community banker Ken Hale, President & CEO of BOM Bank in Natchitoches, Louisiana was named to serve on ICBA’s Political Action Committee.ICBA is the nation’s voice for community banks.

“I am honored to represent our industry and share my experiences as a community banker and civic leader to help ICBA communicate the positive story of community banking,” Hale said. “Community banks are trusted relationship-based lenders, invested in the success of their customers and the economic prosperity of their community.”

In addition to helping shape and advocate ICBA’s national policy positions and programs, Hale’s duties include engaging in grassroots activities in Louisiana to promote pro-community bank policies and serving as a liaison between community banks and ICBA staff and leadership in Washington, D.C.

“Ken is a dedicated community banker who is highly respected in hiscommunity and by his industry peers,” said ICBA Chairman Robert M. Fisher, president and CEO of Tioga State Bank, Spencer, New York. “We are delighted Ken has accepted this appointment and generously volunteered his time and professional talents in pursuit ofcreating an environment where community banks, and the communities they serve, continue to flourish.”

About ICBA

The Independent Community Bankers of America creates and promotes an environment where community banks flourish. ICBA is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education, and high-quality products and services.

With nearly 50,000 locations nationwide, community banks constitute 99 percent of all banks, employ more than 700,000 Americans and are the only physical banking presence in one in three U.S. counties. Holding more than $5 trillion in assets, over $4.4 trillion in deposits, and more than $3.4 trillion in loans to consumers, small businesses and the agricultural community, community banks channel local deposits into the Main Streets and neighborhoods they serve, spurring job creation, fostering innovation and fueling their customers’ dreams in communities throughout America.

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Jackson Parish man arrested for inappropriate behavior with juvenile at Natchitoches Parish church gathering

On March 3rd, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Detectives arrested a 51-year-old Jackson Parish man in connection with a 6-month investigation into allegations of inappropriate behavior with a juvenile almost 19 years ago.

In September of 2020, Detectives assigned to the NPSO Criminal Investigations Division received a complaint from the the victim of alleged sex abuse that occurred back in the year of 2002-2003 in north Natchitoches Parish.

During the investigation, detectives interviewed several potential witnesses and collected statements concerning the alleged incident that allegedly occurred while the victim was attending church gatherings at a north Natchitoches Parish church.

Detectives obtained sufficient evidence and probable cause to obtain criminal warrants signed by a 10th Judicial District Court Judge for the arrest of James M. McCrory.

On March 3, 2021, James M. McCrory, 51, of Quitman, La. turned himself in to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Detectives.

McCory was placed under arrest, transported and booked into the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center charged with 3-counts of Indecent Behavior with a Juvenile.

McCrory was released on a $30,000 bond set by a 10th Judicial District Court Judge pending his court appearance with a protective order issued that he have no contact with the victim, do not possess any firearms, must not possess or consume any alcoholic beverages, or unauthorized prescription medications or illegal controlled dangerous substances and
refrain from criminal activity.

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After nearly 28-years, the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office and Natchitoches Parish Coroner’s Office may finally give peace and closure to the family of Kara E. Vaughn according to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Stuart Wright.

On Wednesday March 24, 2021, the Natchitoches Parish Coroner’s Office contacted the NPSO reporting the LSU Forensic Anthropology and Computer Enhancement Services Lab in Baton Rouge has confirmed the remains recovered from a vehicle submerged in Cane River on March 15 are that of Kara E. Vaughn of Natchitoches, La.
On November 3, 1993, 40-year-old Kara E. Vaughn of Natchitoches was reported missing to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Family members reported Kara, a diabetic, left their Point Place home between 8:00 and 9:00pm during the evening of November 3, 1993 in a white 1978 Honda Civic without her medication and less than $10 dollars in cash.
Kara never returned home leaving her family concerned. She left home that evening upset and previously stated “she would drive her vehicle in Cane River and never be found.”

Natchitoches Sheriff’s detectives began an investigation into Kara’s disappearance interviewing her family and several close friends back in 1993 according to a large investigative case file but were unable to develop any leads of her whereabouts.
Some friends believed that she may have traveled to California.
Detectives entered Kara and her vehicle into the National Crime Information Center as a missing person.

DNA Profiles were collected from family members and provided to the LSU FACES Lab in Baton Rouge which also manages the Louisiana Repository for Unidentified and Missing Persons Information Project.

Detectives continued the investigation attempting to gather information.
Missing Person reports were issued to law enforcement and media outlets for assistance.

Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputies searched Cane River multiple times but were unable to find or identify any signs of the vehicle being in Cane River, then in 2007, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office offered assistance with new special sonar equipment to search the river for any clues.

The search again provided no clues.

Almost 28-years later, in February 2021, NPSO deputies were notified by Ben Abraham of the Northwestern State University Fishing Team and his friend Zack Gagnard that while fishing they observed a possible vehicle on their fish finder submerged in Cane River, approximately 1.2 miles north of the Shell Beach Bridge or close to the 1300 block of Bermuda Road.

NPSO dive team members waited for weather conditions to improve.
On Friday March 12, NPSO dive members entered Cane River near the provided point of location.

Divers located what they believed to be a small vehicle submerged in approximately 10-12 feet of water.

Major Doug Rachal contacted Lt. Ron Johnson with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit and Dive Team to assist in the examination and recovery of the submerged vehicle.

On Monday morning March 15, Calcasieu Sheriff’s Divers traveled to Natchitoches to assist in the vehicle recovery.

Divers entered the water at approximately 10am, finding what appeared to be a Honda Civic with all windows rolled up submerged.

Divers made entry discovering human skeleton remains inside the vehicle.

A laminated identification card and photograph of Kara Vaughn and other documents were found inside the vehicle in surprisingly legible condition.
Divers then began the process of methodically extracting the remains from the vehicle with dignity bringing them to shore for evidence collection.

The Natchitoches Parish Coroner’s Office responded to the scene.

The remains presumed to be that of Kara E. Vaughn, where transported by NPSO Detectives to the LSU FACES Lab in Baton Rouge for dental record and DNA comparison for a positive identification.

The process then shifted to extracting the vehicle from the water.

Calcasieu deputies equipped with special flotation bags placed the bags under the vehicle, then inflated them to raise it to the surface.

Deputies were concerned with the condition of the vehicle therefore flotation devices were used to safely remove it for evidence.

Deputies were then able to tow the flotation bags and vehicle to a boat ramp approximately a quarter mile south of the scene to remove the vehicle and transport it to an undisclosed location for evidence.

Sheriff Stuart Wright spoke with former CNN Headline News Anchor Lyn Vaughn (the sister of Kara Vaughn) that morning and extended his condolences to the Vaughn family.

“Unfortunately the outcome did not come out as we expected for Kara but at least the family has some peace and closure now” said Sheriff Wright.
Kara’s mother passed away back in 2012.

Major Doug Rachal, said sonar equipment technology equipment is rapidly changing and improving from day to day.

Sheriff Wright thanked Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso, Lt. Ron Johnson, the CPSO Dive Team, NPSO Dive Team and all that took part and assisted in the recovery operation.

We thank NSU fishing team member Ben Abraham and his friend Zach Gagnard that saw something suspicious and said something to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office that led the recovery of Kara Vaughn and closure of a 28 year cold missing persons case in Natchitoches Parish.

Members of the Cane River Waterway Commission were also on scene.

LSU F.A.C.E.S Lab confirms Kara was identified through dental records comparison.
Upon completion of the examination, the remains will be released to the family for proper burial according to Natchitoches Parish Asst. Coroner Steven Clanton.

We extend our condolences to the Vaughn family.

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NATCHITOCHES-A Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputy assigned to the NPSO Civil Operations Bureau has been terminated due to violations of the NPSO Standard Operating Procedures according to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Stuart Wright.

The violations were found during an internal audit of the individual deputy’s day-to-day work assignment that discovered improprieties.

The audit findings will be turned over to the Natchitoches Parish District Attorney’s Office and Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office for review.

The Civil Operations Bureau is responsible for the collection of property taxes, garnishments, sheriff’s sales, civil processing issues and the collection of cash fines and bonds.

No further information will be released at this time pending the ongoing investigation.

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Natchitoches Police arrest individual for Attempted Second Degree Murder

The Natchitoches Police Department has arrested an individual for two counts of Attempted Second Degree Murder for a shooting that occurred last October.

On October 17, 2020 around 4:03 a.m., officers with the Natchitoches Police Department responded to the 800 block of Clarence Drive in reference to gunshots in the area. Upon officers arrival they located the victim who said that she saw two individuals outside of her window and they began to shoot into her residence. 

On March 15, 2021 the Natchitoches Police Department arrested Billy Smith (B/M, 30 y.o.a. of Natchitoches) for two counts of Attempted Second Degree Murder and he was placed in the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center.

If you would like to report suspicious activity please contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101 or if you have additional information in regards to this investigation please contact Detective Terry Johnson at (318) 357-3858. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

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Natchitoches man arrested on narcotics offenses, drugs found on him while prepping for surgery

NAtchitoches Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force Agents arrested Dyron Mitchell, 31, of the 1600 block of Meadows Drive in Natchitoches on March 10 on narcotics offenses.

According to a Task Force Official, on 10/07/2020, Agents of the NMJDTF began an investigation in reference to an incident that occurred at the Natchitoches Regional Medical Center. During the incident, Mitchell was found to be in possession of suspected narcotics while he was being prepped for surgery. Mitchell had 59 suspected Ecstasy pills and suspected Marijuana on his person. Both Ecstasy and Marijuana are Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS).  

Mitchell was not placed under arrest on the date of the incidentdue to his physical state.  During the course of the investigation, the suspected narcotics that were seized from Mitchell’s person were submitted to the North Louisiana Criminalistics Laboratory for analysis. The suspected Ecstasy pills were determined to contain Methamphetamine which is a Schedule II CDS. The suspected Marijuana was determined to be Marijuana.

After receiving the results of the analysis, Agents obtained arrest warrants for Mitchell for the following charges:

1 Count Possession of CDS II (Methamphetamine) w/Intent. 

1 Count Simple Possession of Marijuana.

1 Count Second or Subsequent offenses.

Mitchell was booked and placed in the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center to await bond.

The Natchitoches Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force would like to thank the Citizens of Natchitoches for their support. Many times an investigation begins with a simple phone call or tip from a concerned citizen. For this reason the Task Force encourages all citizens to report any crimes in their neighborhoods anonymously by calling 318-357-2248, The Natchitoches Police Department, or the Natchitoches Parish Sheriffs Office.

Natchitoches man arrested on narcotics offenses during investigation of overdose related death

According to a Task Force official, Agents with the Natchitoches Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force (NMJDTF) began an investigation of an overdose death that occurred in the Natchitoches JW Thomas Apartmentslocated on 500 North St. in late January.  

During the course of the investigation, Agents secured an arrest warrant for an Eric Fisher, 33 of the Natchitoches Thomas Apartments, for the following charge:

1 Count of La RS 40:979, Attempt and Conspiracy to Distribute Schedule IV (Alprazolam/Xanax). 

On March 10th 2021, Agents conducted an operation in reference to the ongoing overdose death investigation and executed search warrants on multiple apartments within the Natchitoches Thomas Apartments based on evidence of narcotics sales. During the execution of these search warrants agents made contact with Fisher while at his residence.  Fisher was placed under arrest on the active warrant and a search of his residence was conducted. 

As a result of the search of Fisher’s residence he was also charge with the following offense:

1 Count RS 40:966, Possession of CDS Schedule I (Marijuana)

1 Count RS 40:968, Possession of CDS Schedule III (Suboxone/Buprenorphine)

1 Count RS 14:95E, Possession of a Firearm in the Presence of Controlled Dangerous Substances

Fisher was transported and booked at the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center. Fisher was issued a summons to appear in District Court date on May 3rd 2021.

The overdose death investigation is still ongoing and more arrests are to follow.

The Natchitoches Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force would like to thank the Citizens of Natchitoches for their support. Many times an investigation begins with a simple phone call or tip from a concerned citizen. For this reason the Task Force encourages all citizens to report any crimes in their neighborhoods anonymously by calling 318-357-2248, The Natchitoches Police Department, or the Natchitoches Parish Sheriffs Office.

Dear Citizens of Natchitoches Parish

I, like most of you, am ashamed of the behavior exhibited by some of the Natchitoches Parish Council members in the March 15, 2021 Council meeting. These meetings are the responsibility of the Parish Council, and I have deep respect for the efforts of Council Chairman Chris Paige and his attempts to maintain order in an environment that has now become so toxic and combative.

It is shameful to hear a council person complain often and openly about roads, bridges, and drainage then contradict their supposed concern by immediately casting a vote that may possibly force fines and penalties on the Parish for refusing to discuss a minor issue associated with the new bridge on Clark Road. What truly astounds me is that this council person voted against simply adding the item to the agenda only moments after praying aloud asking God to “…help us be about the business of the parish.” This bridge was paid for with grant funding, and now DOTD gets the slap in the face of the Parish Council refusing to answer their simple questions in a timely manner. This just does not seem to be about progressing “…the business of the parish.”

It is also shameful to watch a council person not pursue solutions, but instead spend time making false accusations, baiting folks into arguments with profane taunting, name calling, and acting as a prideful bully instead of working for the good people of his district and the Parish. All this while totally neglecting to acknowledge the fact that bridge repairs, and road grading in his district over the last two weeks have nearly ground all other work efforts within the Parish to a halt. When confronted with the statement that more work had taken place in his district during the most recent month, he simply redirected the conversation to chastising the Public Works Director, Public Works employees and another Council member.

These members’ motives are now clear. They would rather stall good work and point fingers at others; derail the passing of the only tax that funds solid waste removal in the rural parts of the parish, while voting to increase the cost of solid waste removal; and when all else fails threaten those who are working for the good of Natchitoches Parish.

You, the good people of Natchitoches Parish elected me to be honest, transparent and work every day for the betterment of Natchitoches Parish. You have my work; I will continue to do that. No matter what the opposition attempts, you can count on me to give you the straight truth, even when it hurts. Today is a new day, and we have now all seen the true colors of those who seem to have motives that seek to destroy instead of build toward a common goal go a better Natchitoches Parish.


John Richmond

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The City of Natchitoches would like to inform the public of changes to the City’s policy regarding cost adjustments due to water leaks for utility customers. Per the State of Louisiana Attorney General, government agencies are not allowed to make adjustments to utility bills regarding water leaks.

What this means for our customers is although we cannot make an adjustment for water leaks due to a burst waterline, the City will be able to arrange a payment plan to the customer, upon request, if unable to pay the full amount for water usage through the meter.   

Most recently, the City was hit by a winter storm in which customers experienced burst waterlines or water leaks.  Customers are now receiving their monthly bill for that cycle which includes the dates of the winter storm.  If you had a burstwaterline or water leak, your bill is probably higher than your average monthly bill due to the water usage that passed through the meter.  

We understand this is frustrating for our customers, but ask for your patience and understanding as we work to implement the payment plan process to assist in these situations. We also ask our customers to analyze their bill each month and notify us immediately if your monthly usage changes.  You may have a leak and not know it.  If you suspect you have a leak, please contact the Utility Service Center and an employee will be dispatched to assist you. If the leak is determined to be on your side of the meter, you will need to contact a plumber of your choosing to fix the leak.

If this is the case and you are unable to pay your utility bill in full, please contact the Utility Service Center at (318)357-3830 or stop by their offices at 806 Second Street to arrange a payment plan for these charges.

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Natchitoches Police arrest two individuals for burglaries in Hidden Hills neighborhood

The Natchitoches Police Department has arrested two individuals who are responsible for two burglaries that took place over the weekend.

On March 14, 2021 around 5:56 p.m., the Natchitoches Police Department responded to the 200 block of Melissa Place in reference to a resident recognizing a juvenile responsible for a burglary the previous night. Officers were able to locate the juvenile and he was taken into custody without incident. After  speaking with the juvenile, detectives were able to obtain a search warrant for the suspect’s residence and located multiple items that were taken during the burglaries.

As a result of their investigation the juvenile was arrested for two counts of Simple Burglary.

Also arrested was R-Mondy Johnson (B/M, 18 y.o.a. of Natchitoches) for two counts of Simple Burglary and he was placed in the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center.

The Natchitoches Police Department would like to remind its citizens to please note the brand, model and serial number on all valuable household items and firearms. The serial numbers can help officers identify your items and get them back to you.

If you have any additional information in regards to this investigation please contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101 or Detective William Connell at (318) 238-3911. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

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Chamber President Selected for Emerging Leaders Council

Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce’s President Laura Lyles has been selected as a distinguished professional for the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry’s 2021 Emerging Leaders Council. This council is comprised of young professionals and entrepreneurs who have a demonstrated commitment to making the state a great place to live and work. Lyles is one of one hundred members who represent every region of the state and every sector of businesses and industry. She is one of four from the Northwest region of the state.

The Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to making the Natchitoches area a thriving business community by promoting commerce, strengthening people, and improving life.

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NATCHITOCHES – Natchitoches Police Chief Michael “Micky” Dove announced his retirement on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, after 32 years of service. Chief Dove began his tenure with the Natchitoches Police Department in 1989 and rose through the ranks until he was appointed Chief of Police in 2009. His terminal leave will commence on March 15th and end on June 15th. On behalf of Mayor Ronnie Williams, Jr. and the City of Natchitoches, we wish Chief Dove the best in the next chapter of his life.

A nationwide search for applicants will be conducted to select a new Chief of Police. The hiring period and requirements for Chief of Police will be announced soon. Approved applicants will be required to take the Natchitoches Police Chief exam per the requirements of the Natchitoches Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board. Those who make the grade will head to the second round, where the City’s Administration will conduct interviews.

Stay tuned for more details about the hiring period and requirements for Chief of Police. Assistant Chief Harman Winters will serve as Interim Chief of Police until a replacement is found.

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PROVENCAL-Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Detectives are actively investigating an armed robbery at the Dollar General in Provencal on Wednesday evening according to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Stuart Wright.

On Wednesday evening March 3, 2021 at approximately 9:43pm, Deputies assigned to the NPSO Patrol Division responded to NATCOM 911 Center reports of an armed robbery with a gun at the Dollar General in the 1800 block of La. Hwy 117 in Provencal, La

Deputies and Provencal Police arrived on scene a short time later.

Deputies say while speaking with store employees, they learned that a suspect described as a black male wearing a grey hoody, khaki pants and a black mask produced a handgun robbing the store clerk of approximately $750 dollars.

The suspect then fled the store on foot.

Several units from the NPSO and Provencal Police searched the area but were unable to locate the suspect.

Detectives assigned to the NPSO Criminal Investigations Division also responded to the scene to assist in the investigation.

Deputies processed the crime scene, interviewed witnesses and completed an offense report for investigative purposes.

The investigation is currently ongoing and active. If you have any information or observed suspicious activity in the area prior to the armed robbery, please contact the NPSO Criminal Investigations Division at 357-7830. Case agent: Detective Lt. Jonathan Byles.

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City of Natchitoches Early Childhood Education and Development: Phase 3 Reopening Process

The City of Natchitoches Early Childhood Education & Development will provide the following accommodations for Type III Child Care Center staff and families beginning Monday, March 8 after the Governor announced the move back to Phase 3.

All in office visits will only be for finger imaging such as:

  1. Child Care Criminal Background Checks (CCCBC) for Early Childhood employees and
  2. Tracking of Time Systems (TOTS) for families receiving Child Care Assistance (CCAP)

These visits will be completed by appointments only. All individuals must wear a Face Mask and follow all sanitation protocol steps prior to entry of the building. Only 1 person will be allowed to enter the office per appointment.

All Child Care Assistance Application (CCAP) submission assistance will continue by phone call appointments only.

To set an appointment for any of the assistance options listed above please contact Christina Friday at 318-238-7508 Monday -Friday between 9 am-2pm or by email at

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NATCHITOCHES – By order of the Mayor of the City of Natchitoches, on Wednesday, March 3rd, all city buildings will reopen to the public after Governor Edwards moved the state back to Phase 3.

Under these new guidelines, city buildings will reopen to 75% capacity and face masks are required for entry.

The Utility Service Center Lobby will now be open, but with limited capacity. Employees are still available to assist for all other services including collecting payments, disconnections, and transfers via the drive thru.

Utility payments can still be made in the following ways:
• Credit card payments can be made via telephone (VISA and MasterCard ONLY)
• Check payments can be put in the drop box located in the last drive thru lane

As always, the City offers online bill pay for our utility customers 24/7. To sign up for online bill pay, visit

For further information or questions regarding utility payments, please contact the Utility Service Center at (318)357-3830.

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Whataburger holds groundbreaking ceremony at future site of Natchitoches location

Whataburger and the Natchitoches Chamber of Commerce held a groundbreaking ceremony on March 2 to celebrate Natchitoches’ first-ever Whataburger location at the future site of the restaurant at 902 Keyser Avenue, scheduled to open this May. The company’s mascot Whataguy was on hand for photo ops and attendees received gift bags filled with branded chips, cookies, water bottles, lanyards and face masks.

The brand will serve up its fresh, customized burgers, 24/7 top-notch customer service, famous Fancy and Spicy Ketchup, and orange-and-white-striped fun and once opened, the new restaurant will feature a state-of-the-art kitchen, double drive-thru lanes, large parking lot and an open dining room to best serve our guests. There will also be a custom interior mural featuring well-known, local icons.

“We’re honored to open this Natchitoches location and want to extend an especially big thanks to the Chamber for welcoming Whataburger into the community with open arms and celebrating with us today,” said David Cotham, G.V.C.S., Inc. Director of Operations. “We can’t wait to continue our tradition of serving great food and friendly service to our friends in Natchitoches, and look forward to opening our doors this spring.”

Whataburger will bring 100 jobs to the Natchitoches community and this month, the brand will begin hiring Team Members. Whataburger’s unique leadership curriculum trains all employees in a way that automatically puts them on the path to career advancement.

Those interested in working at Natchitoches’ new Whataburger restaurant or for more information on Whataburger’s competitive benefits and salaries, great opportunities for career advancements and other employee resources for growth and development, visit or text 44790.

Founded more than 70 years ago, Whataburger has grown to more than 840 locations across 10 states, operating 24/7, 364 days a year. The burger chain has gained a unique and loyal following on social media, with more than 2.1 million Facebook followers and 1.2 million Twitter followers. Fans and celebrities often find a way to make Whataburger food, swag and restaurant locations a part of their personal celebrations – including graduations, engagements, weddings, baby announcements and more.

About Whataburger

Whataburger has served up its fresh, made-to-order burgers and friendly customer service since 1950, when Harmon Dobson opened the first Whataburger as a small roadside burger stand in Corpus Christi, Texas. Today, the company is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, with more than 840 locations in 10 states and sales of more than $2.5 billion annually. Whataburger has 50,000 Family Members (employees) and more than 14 million customers who like to customize their Whataburgers just the way they like it. Newsweek ranked Whataburger second on its 2021 list of America’s Best Customer Service brands in the Fast Food category.

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