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LSU defeats Ole Miss 10-7 in football in Tiger Stadium

Advocate staff photo by ANGELA MAJOR -- LSU's Terrence Magee (18) is tackled by an Ole Miss defender Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, during the Tigers' game against the Rebels at Tiger Stadium.

LSU drove 95 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with just over five minutes left and the defense made two key stands in the last 1:44 of play to upset No. 3 and previously undefeated Ole Miss, 10-7, in Southeastern Conference play Saturday at Tiger Stadium.

Quarterback Anthony Jenning shook off to two previous interceptions to lead the No. 24 Tigers on… Continue reading →

For Louisiana schools, an ever-evolving measure of success

Advocate file photo by BRYAN TUCK -- State Superintendent John White

For Louisiana’s long-suffering public schools, it often seems as though the goalposts are not just being moved but being rebuilt in all shapes and sizes. Schools have been under pressure to lift test scores and reduce dropout rates since the federal No Child Left Behind Act went into effect more than a decade ago. School performance… Continue reading →

New domestic violence initiative follows deadly breakdowns in New Orleans

A mugshot of Hank Dolliole who police want to question about the death of Lauren Tanski, who was beaten to death on Sunday.

Leonard Tanski still can’t fathom what he heard a New Orleans police officer tell him almost two years ago. He’d just received a 4:30 a.m. phone call that his daughter, Lauren, had been strangled and bludgeoned to death in an apartment where she was living on Urquhart Street. The suspect: her roommate’s ex-boyfriend, a probationer with… Continue reading →

Grim Reaper comes for House of Shock after 22 years

Photo provided by Hanna Rasanen/ -- Jay Gracianette and Ross Karpelman started House of Shock 22 years ago.

Back in 1992, 22-year-olds Ross Karpelman and Jay Gracianette were knocking back a few drinks in the backyard, contemplating all the fun they used to have on Halloween growing up in New Orleans. They were too old for trick-or-treating and not into bar hopping. They recalled the backyard haunted houses they’d enjoyed as kids and decided a little… Continue reading →

Ground game key to victory in U.S. Senate race in La.

In this Sept. 6, 2014 photo, Dustin Brewster, an intern with the Louisiana Republican Party, leaves a brochure touting Louisiana Republican Senate candidate Bill Cassidy after no one answered the door at the home, in Baton Rouge, La. Brewster was doing a neighborhood canvas as part of GOP efforts to identify possible Cassidy supporters. (AP Photo/Melinda Deslatte) ORG XMIT: OTK

The 2014 race for the U.S. Senate in Louisiana will go down as far and away the most expensive election in the state’s history, with tens of millions of dollars spent by the candidates and millions more by outside interest groups. A big chunk of that money pays for highly visible TV ads blaring… Continue reading →

Early voting turnout comparable to 2008

Advocate staff photo by Travis Spradling -- The Louisiana State Capitol

Four days into early voting and John Couvillon, the Baton Rouge pollster, tracks turnout as similar to 2008, with 127,737 voters casting early ballots between Tuesday and Friday. During the first four days of early voting in 2008, a presidential election in which U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu was last re-elected, 137,223 votes were cast, Couvillon said. Interestingly,… Continue reading →

Four robes up for grabs in Orleans Parish Civil District Court

Lloyd Medley Jr.

Orleans Parish voters heading to the polls on Nov. 4 will decide four Civil District Court races, choosing from among a diverse pool of candidates ranging from seasoned jurists to political newcomers. Three incumbent judges have drawn challengers, and another robe is up for grabs in a three-way contest for a newly dedicated domestic section. That… Continue reading →

A Starr shines for Habitat fundraiser

Photos provided by Kim Bergeron for East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity - Beatles legend, drummer Ringo Starr, signs an upright piano that has been restored and painted by Slidell artists Lori Gomez with a Beatle's tribute theme The piano will be auctioned at the When the East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity hosts its Seventh annual 'Home is Where the Art is' gala to be held Nov. 21 from 7:30 to 11:30 at the Northshore Harbor Center, 100 Harbor Center Blvd., in Slidell.

Slidell artist Lori Gomez spent 300 hours restoring a 120-year-old upright piano and transforming it into a Beatles-themed work of art, but the five minutes Ringo Starr spent playing and signing the piano will make it far more valuable to the East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity. The group is auctioning off the piano to build… Continue reading →

Prospect 3 on sound creative, financial footing, art world observers say

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Lisa Sigal with one of her many Prospect 3 installations. The pieces are part of her project

Think of the trajectory of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival: It began as a brilliant little homegrown party where Sister Gertrude Morgan, robed in white, preached and sold her otherworldly paintings from a makeshift booth. Now it’s an almighty tourist magnet and Super Bowl of talent — a pricey, mass-marketed mega-event. In any arc… Continue reading →

Competing GOP rallies

Advocate Photo by MARK BALLARD -- State Rep. Lenar Whitney, R-Houma, who is a candidate for the 6th congressional district, chats Saturday with Zach Dasher, a Republican from Calhoun who is seeking the 5th congressional district seat. Rob Maness, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate is in the background at a rally held by the Family Research Council.

Different factions of the Republican Party met on different sides of East Baton Rouge Parish Saturday energizing their activists to help get out the vote for their candidates in congressional and Senate elections. In south Baton Rouge, Republicans focused on business. In the northern part of the parish, the main talk was about religion.… Continue reading →

Artist turns gun buyback program into exhibit

Kirsha Kaechele, known in the New Orleans art community for her avant-garde work post-Katrina, has curated a new exhibit in the St. Roch neighborhood that aims to get guns off the street and local youth into a brand-new recording studio. Called “The Embassy,” the conceptual art project debuted Saturday with a “no questions asked” gun buyback… Continue reading →

Long-delayed Mandeville road project nearing completion

Advocate staff photo by SCOTT THRELKELD --  Work continues as drivers navigate a construction zone Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, on U.S. 190 in Mandeville. The project, which has fouled traffic for 18 months, is scheduled to be completed by Thanksgiving.

For more than 18 months, the 1.15-mile stretch of U.S. 190 between Asbury Drive and Lonesome Road in Mandeville has been a dusty, jumbled mess as construction crews have worked to widen and improve the two-lane road, one of Mandeville’s main thoroughfares. The $11.3 million project, which broke ground in April 2013 and was… Continue reading →

Two more New Orleans-area residents being monitored for Ebola

Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director Tom Frieden provides an update on the latest developments involving the deadly Ebola virus and its infection of a Texas health care professional as he addresses the media during a briefing at CDC headquarters Monday, Oct. 13, 2014, in Atlanta. Frieden said the CDC is working to improve protections for hospital workers after a nurse caring for an Ebola patient in Dallas became the first person to become infected with the disease inside the U.S. (AP Photo/Atlanta Journal Constitution, David Tulis) MARIETTA OUT, GWINNETT OUT

The number of people being monitored for Ebola symptoms in Louisiana jumped to four on Friday, with the addition of two more residents from the New Orleans area, the state health agency said. One man and one woman — both considered “low risk” — have been added to the two men already being watched, said Olivia Watkins,… Continue reading →

Seven Louisiana metro areas post job gains

Seven of Louisiana’s eight metropolitan areas gained nonfarm jobs over the year ended Sept. 30, according to seasonally adjusted figures released Friday by the Louisiana Workforce Commission. Numbers for the metro areas’ job categories were not seasonally adjusted, but they showed gains in all but the Alexandria area, which lost 700 work slots.… Continue reading →

N.O. charter head faces ethics charges

Friends of King Schools CEO Doris Hicks (Image from

The Louisiana Board of Ethics has filed civil charges against Doris Hicks, a well-known New Orleans charter school leader, and three of her relatives after finding them in violation of state laws aimed at preventing nepotism. The board found that Hicks, CEO of the Friends of King Schools, broke two state laws in hiring immediate family members and… Continue reading →

Trainor campaign, sheriff’s law firm share address, and other New Orleans-area political news

The Vampire Diaries -- Pictured: Ian Somerhalder as Damon -- Photo: Nino Munoz/The CW -- � 2013 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.

Brian Trainor, one of four candidates hoping to replace Walter Reed as district attorney for the 22nd Judicial District, minimized his role in a personal-injury lawsuit that landed attorney Charles Hughes in hot water this month when racial slurs Hughes used in a recorded conversation with an unhappy client became public. Trainor’s only involvement in the case… Continue reading →

Van carrying accused child sellers spotted in Texas

Tangipahoa Parish authorities launched a search for blue van Friday morning after getting a report that a woman tried to sell a child, believed to be about 10 years old, to patrons at a Hammond gas station. By late Friday afternoon, it was believed that the woman, child and others in the van had fled Louisiana to… Continue reading →

Peralta vetoes ordinance barring raises for parish workers

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER --  St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta leaves the parish jail after posting bond Thursday, April 24, 2014.

St. Bernard Parish President David Peralta on Friday made good on his promise to veto a measure passed by the Parish Council this week that would have imposed a six-month freeze on salary raises for parish employees, thereby limiting the authority of the embattled first-term parish leader. Early indications were that the veto might stand.… Continue reading →

Candidates seeking Jefferson Parish judgeships

Adrian Adams

Sitting judges typically don’t draw challengers if they decide to run again, and that custom held true with one exception this year in 24th Judicial District Court in Gretna, where two empty seats attracted seven hopefuls and one judge drew a challenger from a case over which he recently presided. Judge Robert Pitre… Continue reading →

Medicaid contract awards announced

The state health agency late Friday named the five companies to provide health insurance for some two-thirds of the state’s 1.4 million Medicaid recipients. The lucrative contracts will go to Aetna Better Health of Louisiana, Amerigroup Louisiana Inc., AmeriHealth Caritas Louisiana Inc., Louisiana Healthcare Connections and UnitedHealthcare Community Plan. Four of the five companies participated in the… Continue reading →

Woody Jenkins backs Rob Maness

Woody Jenkins, who came within a few thousand votes of beating U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu in the 1996 race, threw his support Friday to Rob Maness, the tea party-backed Republican in the Senate race. The other major Republican in the Nov. 4 election is U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, who, like Jenkins, is from Baton Rouge. Maness, who… Continue reading →

Man arrested in Hollygrove shooting, and other area police and fire news

Photo provided by New Orleans Police Department -- The NOPD is asking for the publicâs assistance in locating and identifying three suspects wanted for Shoplifting in two different incidents at the same location.  Both incidents took place October 21, 2014, inside of the Dollar General Store located at 230 North Broad Street.

One man was shot and another arrested after a fight in Hollygrove late Thursday night ended in gunfire, according to New Orleans police. The incident occurred a few minutes before midnight at Cambronne and Belfast streets. Police arrested Antoine Rounds, 41, in the shooting. The… Continue reading →

Chiquita shareholders reject Fyffes merger

Shareholders of Charlotte, North Carolina-based Chiquita Brands International spurned the company’s board of directors Friday, voting down a planned merger with Irish produce company Fyffes. That leaves Chiquita only days to decide whether to accept an all-cash bid by two Brazilian firms to buy Chiquita, which the board has rejected three times.… Continue reading →

Ex-Clark High teacher arrested for alleged sex with student

Dominic Lewis

A former Treme high school teacher was arrested Thursday for allegedly having sex on two occasions with a 16-year-old female student. Dominic Lewis, 32, was booked on counts of carnal knowledge of a juvenile and indecent behavior with a juvenile, according to police records. He was arrested about 8:15 a.m. in the 500 block of… Continue reading →

Louisiana Board of Ethics files charges against Friends of King Schools CEO Doris Hicks, 3 relatives

Friends of King Schools CEO Doris Hicks (Image from

The Louisiana Board of Ethics has filed charges against Friends of King Schools CEO Doris Hicks and three relatives after finding them in violation of state law aimed to prevent nepotism. The board determined Hicks violated two state laws for hiring immediate family members and signing checks made out to them, according to the complaint,… Continue reading →

Newly released Dallas nurse ‘cured of Ebola,’ to meet with Obama

Patient Nina Pham smiles as she speaks outside of National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Md., Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. Pham, the first nurse diagnosed with Ebola after treating an infected man at a Dallas hospital is free of the virus. The 26-year-old Pham arrived last week at the NIH Clinical Center. She had been flown there from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — A nurse who caught Ebola while caring for the patient diagnosed in Dallas was released from a hospital Friday, free of the virus, and was to meet later in the day with President Barack Obama at the White House. Nurse Nina Pham said she felt “fortunate and blessed to be standing here today,”… Continue reading →