A Fat Tuesday shooting that occurred in the wake of the Rex and Zulu processions and injured seven parade-goers could be the catalyst for stiffer gun laws in Louisiana. When lawmakers convene their regular session next month, on the agenda is a bill that would create new penalties for firing off a weapon in large crowds.
The legislation by Rep. Juan LaFonta, a Crescent City Democrat, was dropped in the hopper this morning as House Bill 44. It would prohibit the possession or discharge of a firearm at a public gathering of 50 or more people.
But there are exceptions for hunting, law enforcement, private residences, constitutionally protected areas and historic reenactments. The proposed penalties include imprisonment at hard labor for up to seven years, with at least five served without benefit of parole, and as much as a $5,000 fine.
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
Is it a crime for citizens to photograph, video, or take notes of a police officer in the line of duty, or a right protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution? Locally, such activity, as witnessed recently, will at the very least result in a night spent behind bars.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.