Katelyn Lusich Devin Baham Andrew Sumner

Slidell Man Found Guilty of Manslaughter in 2012 Stabbing Death and Fire

COVINGTON----A sentencing hearing will be held June 22 for Devin Baham, 24, of Slidell, who was convicted by a St. Tammany Parish jury late Friday (May 15) of manslaughter, aggravated arson, and obstruction of justice for fatally stabbing a woman and setting her apartment on fire to cover up the crime. As a multiple offender, Baham faces life in prison.

“I want to thank the jury for their time and attention in this very difficult case,” District Attorney Warren Montgomery said at the end of the weeklong trial. “I believe justice has been served for the victim and her family by the jury’s unanimous verdicts.”

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Let's Talk About It...

Wednesday, May 27th at 7:00PM
Faith Bible Church
1148 N. Columbia St.
Covington, LA 70433

From A. Nathan Young, Pastor of Faith Bible Church -

In light of the growing unrest and disunity in our country, it is important that we become proactive in our approach to law enforcement and community relations. In the past, we have witnessed the tension that negative relationships between citizens and the police can create, even in our own community. We have also witnessed, more recently, in other parts of our nation, what can happen when the two do not work together to create good working relationships.

The purpose of this event will be to be proactive in our approach to law enforcement and citizen relationships. We desire to create awareness and understanding in West St. Tammany. Join us on Wednesday, May 27, 2015, 7pm at Faith Bible Church as we interact with top law enforcement officials in our area. You will have the opportunity to ask them your questions and share your concerns.

Law Enforcement Panel Police Chief Tim Lentz
Sheriff Jack Strain
District Attorney Warren Montgomery
Public Defender John Linder
Other Community and Political Leaders will also attend.

Please note that questions for the panel will be written and handed in. Pastor A. Nathan Young will also moderate the event.

16-Year-Old Pleads Guilty to Second Degree Murder

COVINGTON— Sixteen-year-old Eduardo Morales pled guilty Wednesday (May 6) to second-degree murder in the death of a 28-year-old man, who was gunned down during a pre-dawn argument that involved several men in a Slidell neighborhood in August 2013.

Morales was charged as an adult and faces an automatic sentence of life in prison for the shooting, which resulted in the death of Clarence Adams of Slidell. Because of Morales’s age, he can be considered for parole after serving 35 years.

A co-defendant, Daquan Ratliff, 20, pled guilty Monday to accessory after the fact for fleeing the scene with the weapon. He faces a five-year suspended sentence with five years of probation. A third defendant, Raheem Jamal Willis, still faces a second-degree murder charge and two counts of aggravated assault with a firearm.

The murder occurred just before 3 a.m. on Aug. 18 at Walnut and Beechwood Streets in Slidell, after a dispute in a neighborhood bar spilled into the streets. Willis fired a rifle in the direction of Adams but put the weapon down to engage in a fistfight. Morales then picked up the rifle and fired it. Adams was struck four times—once in his left arm, two in his left abdomen, and once in the head. Ratliff, Willis, and Morales then fled the scene.

Assistant District Attorneys Louis Butler and Joey Oubre handled the case, which was investigated by the Slidell Police Department. Judge Peter J. Garcia accepted the plea agreements.

District Attorney Warren Montgomery Supports Justice System Study

District Attorney Warren Montgomery joined other St. Tammany Parish justice system officials in a press conference Wednesday (May 6) as the Northshore Business Council and Metropolitan Crime Commission announced a yearlong study of the criminal justice system in St. Tammany and Washington parishes.

Metropolitan Crime Commission President Rafael Goyeneche said his organization will conduct the study, called the St. Tammany Parish Criminal Justice System Accountability Project, for the first time in St. Tammany to provide valuable information about how the system is working. He praised the array of public officials, representing every area of the justice system, for standing with him to support the study.

Montgomery said he is thankful to the Northshore Business Council, a group of area business leaders, for financing the study, which is expected to cost $100,000 the first year. He said he also is excited about the wealth of information the study will provide. The study will follow every 2014 felony case from arrest to resolution, examining the performances of the offices of the Sheriff, District Attorney, Clerk of Court, and the judiciary. Goyeneche said all of the public agencies have agreed to open their records for the project.

For more photos of this event, please click here.

2015 Court Calendar

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