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Authorities in St. Tammany parish are asking for the public’s help in identifying a mutilated body that was dumped on Highway 90 near the Rigolets. Police say the murder victim was found in late July, and they believe the victim may have been a transient with ties to Biloxi. Coroner Dr. Charles Preston says the autopsy results were gruesome.

“This person died of blunt force trauma to the head and face, had multiple skull fractures and multiple facial fractures. The body was horribly dismembered, missing both arms and one extremity,” Preston said.

Preston says they ran a phenotype DNA analysis to get an idea of what the victim may have looked like, because his body was badly decomposed. He says they believe the man is over 65-years-old, of European and Middle Eastern descent, and has a fair complexion.

“He was not very, very dark or black. We are able to predict an eye color that is likely brown. We’re able to predict a hair color as being light to dark brown,” Preston said.

Preston says the victim has a scar from an open heart surgery and had blood pressure medications in his system. St. Tammany Sheriff Randy Smith says the first step in solving the case is identifying the deceased victim.

“This gentleman is somebody’s loved one that’s been missing for over two months, and we’re asking the community to come forward with any information that can help us in this investigation and identify this victim,” Smith said.

Authorities have released a computer sketch of the victim and anyone with information is urged to call the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s office, or call CrimeStoppers at (504) 822-1111 to remain anonymous.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Sweater weather is coming to Louisiana as the first cold front of the Fall has made its way to Louisiana. State Climatologist Barry Keim says this front has really lowered the humidity. And low temperatures will reach the mid 50s later this week in north Louisiana and the low 70s in southeast Louisiana.

“And that might not sound like a lot but New Orleans, for example, they had many, many days this summer when the minimum was 80 or above, which is just mind blowing.”

Keim says this beautiful weather, with no rain in sight, will remain in place through the weekend and maybe into early next week. He says this cold front came through a little bit late, as we typically see these fronts in the beginning or middle of September.

“The pump coming off the Gulf of Mexico has just been in place and the Bermuda high has just been pushing that very warm, moist air into the state of Louisiana and it’s been a very, very uncomfortable summer.”

By the end of the week, low temperatures will be in the 50s for most of the state. Keim says this cool, dry air coming in from Canada is keeping the temperature down over the next few days into the weekend.

“The weekend is just shaping up to be absolutely glorious to usher in a new era of LSU football, so it’s going to be amazing, the tailgating is going to be amazing.”

 
(photo courtesy of Flickr)  
 
 
 

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The continuing resolution that contains money for flood relief efforts in Louisiana is tied up in politics, and the clock is ticking before Congress’ fall recess. US Senator Bill Cassidy says they’re going back and forth because Senate Democrats want funding for the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, in the spending bill as well.

“Mitch McConnell has now filed a substitute bill, if you will, that doesn’t have money for flood and doesn’t have money for Flint either. I think Democrats are also going to vote against that bill,” Cassidy said.

The $500 million flood aid package contains dollars earmarked for 16 states. Cassidy says a separate bill for Flint funding passed the Senate, but not the House. He says they’re still trying to figure out what it will take to get the continuing resolution approved in both houses.

“What Senate Democrats want is some assurance that the House of Representatives will pass the companion bill, and if they don’t get that reassurance, then they want the continuing resolution to have both flood and Flint,” Cassidy said.

Congress is set to recess for the November election on Friday at midnight. Cassidy says he is confident that assistance will be approved for Louisiana flood victims. But he says the question remains as to when that aid will come to the Bayou State.

“What I don’t know is whether or not he first pot of money will come this week, next week, or whether all the money will come in about 8 or 9 or 10 weeks when we come back after the election,” Cassidy said.

 
 
 
 

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The state Republican Party claims Governor John Bel Edwards is using the flood to raise money for his re-election campaign. Executive Director of the Louisiana GOP, Jason Dore, says the governor attended a fundraising event one night during one of his trips to Washington, D.C., to get more federal aid for flood victims.

“I think that it shows he had a split focus. He wasn’t singularly focused on bringing back recovery for Louisiana and making sure that we are made whole and that FEMA is held accountable for all of its actions,” Dore said.

But the governor’s Communications Director, Richard Carbo, says the event was held at night, after a long day of fighting for federal assistance. He says no state dollars went towards the reception event for the fundraiser.

“He took it a step further and paid for his accommodations through his campaign. So he’s being very transparent about it and being very responsible with the taxpayer funds,” Carbo said.

Dore also says Edwards has not been hard enough on FEMA regarding their delayed response to flood victims.

“The governor has taken the positon of defending FEMA and promoting their response, but there’s a lot lacking according to the people that have been having to deal with FEMA’s response every day,” Dore said.

Dore claims Central Mayor Jr. Shelton had to go through a Congressman to get more flood relief supplies. Carbo says there are many different ways to go about getting more assistance, and Shelton just chose another route and has been complimentary of the governor’s response.

“He’s been very complimentary of the governor’s response to the flooding. They’re mischaracterizing what the mayor has said, and there’re definitely processes that are in place,” Carbo said.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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As the November 8 election draws closer, more and more candidates for US Senate are taking their campaigns to the airwaves. State Treasurer John Kennedy aired his first commercial during last night’s Saints game. Jeremy Alford of LaPolitics.com says it was unusual that the ad was a full 60 seconds.

“We usually see candidates stick to this 30 second format. Kennedy doubled that with a single buy during an expensive time frame, and this is a guy that’s going to have cash to compete, and now that he’s up on TV, he’s going to stay on TV,” Alford said.

Alford says the commercials are helping candidates introduce themselves to voters, many for the first time. Republican businessman Abhay Patel airs his first commercial today. Alford says the debates will solidify some positions on policy issues, but that poses a problem in such a crowded field.

“You’ve got an hour dedicated to a debate. If you put 24 people up on stage, it’s not going to give you much of a preview of where these folks stand,” Alford said.

Congressman John Fleming is also running a new ad. Alford says we’ll likely see more ads from candidates attacking their opponents in the near future. He says Kennedy will likely be a target, given the lead he had in the beginning of the race.

“There’s the perception that John Kennedy is sitting on a good number of votes, and they’re going to have to whack him pretty good to shake some of those loose,” Alford said.

 
 
 
 
 

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Political experts say last night's presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is one of the most bizarre ever at that level of politics. LSU Political Science Professor Robert Hogan says it's due, in part, to the sharp personal jabs they took at each other.


He says there was also an unusual lack of actual substance in the debate.

"There was a lot of talk about each others personal finances," said Hogan. "But not a lot about what policy proposals they each would favor."

Hogan says he doesn't feel there was a clean winner in the debate, but it seems as though Clinton presented a better case to support her position. He says Trump seemed to have difficulty making his points clear to the public -- but he's staying true to his style.

"The one liner zingers and his desire to only speak in very general terms," said Hogan.

Hogan says both candidates played the roles a lot of people anticipated they would. He says they both often cut each other off and, as we've seen from Trump in the past, the GOP candidate mostly gave way to rants.

"I think that Hillary Clinton handled it quite well given that this is far different, really, than any other debate we've ever seen out of two major nominees," said Hogan.
 
 
 

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Bayou Country Superfest announces the 8th annual music festival with be held in New Orleans at the Mercedes Benz Superdome over the 2017 Memorial Day Holiday. Producer and Director of the Superfest Quint Davis says the three-day concert will start with a free and open to the public concert on Friday, May 26th in Champions Square. He says they want this to be the new country superfest in every way.

“So we’re going to have more talent than we’ve had before and more headline talent on any given night than we’ve had before.”

The lineup and ticket details will be announced on December 1st. Davis says LSU and Tiger Stadium were always welcoming to the Superfest and will forever be the father of the festival. He says now that the festival is indoors, there is more opportunity to get creative with lighting.

“Because of it having a roof, we’re able to create productive value with hanging things from the roof in the stage we had at Tiger Stadium.”

Davis says the Superdome was the only other location in that state which could hold over 40,000 concert-goers. He says visitors have access to more than 35,000 hotels rooms within walking distance of the festival.

“After the show, the French Quarter is across the street. It’s what New Orleans is known for, having a big party, having the top infrastructure for a major national event.”

 
 

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Three strippers are suing the state over the new law that requires dancers in clubs to be at least 21-years-old. Legal analyst Tim Meche doesn’t think the suit will be successful because challenges to the federal drinking age requirement were struck down.

“Generally government has a right to regulate activities of those of a certain age,” Meche said.

The suit also claims the law is sexist and would not apply to men because exotic dancers are defined as “entertainers whose breasts or buttocks are exposed to view” in the law. Meche doesn’t think that claim will go far in the courtroom.

“The other novel theory that this only applies to females and not males is a very innovative claim. I admire the person who came up with that,” Meche said.

The dancers, identified as Jane Doe I, II, and III, allege that the law violates their First Amendment right to free expression, in the form of erotic dance. State Alcohol and Tobacco Control officers plan on enforcing the new law on October 1st. Meche doesn’t think the dancers will win the law suit.

“I don’t think it’s going to be successful ultimately,” Meche said.

 
 
 
 
 

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Five weeks after the historic flooding in south Louisiana, many people still have debris piled up in their front yards. Spokesperson for the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, Mike Steele, says crews have hit the 55% mark for completion of debris removal.

“There was an estimated 4.8 million cubic yards, or about 80,000 truckloads, of debris left after the flooding in August,” Steele said.

Steele says crews have been hard at work for the past several weeks, and it will likely be a few more weeks before all the debris has been removed. He says they are asking the public to be patient.

“A lot of times they’re on some of the main corridors for people trying to get back and forth to work. So we’re asking the public to be patient, be safe around these vehicles, and just give the crews time to help up get this done,” Steele said.

Steele says they have more crews working now, so hopefully the second half of the cleanup will go faster than the first. He says they are asking people to sort their debris into different categories to make the cleanup process easier.

“They want to make sure that people continue dividing it up into categories like household garbage, construction debris, vegetative debris, household hazardous waste, and also electronics,” Steele said.

 
 
 
 

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As thousands of residents in south Louisiana continue to put the pieces of their life back together, it feels to many like this nightmare will never end. But former Governor Kathleen Blanco says one of her biggest takeaways from Hurricane Katrina is that people in Louisiana are fighters, and they don't give up.

"We live in this magnificent land that has now presented us with severe challenges," said Blanco. "But it's a place that we love."

Blanco says last night's game in the Superdome was a reminder about how resilient communities can be, as it was 10 years ago that New Orleans got a rebirth when the facility reopened for the first time since the storm. She says we will recover from this.

"All of the people who got flooded will find that point where they can recreate their lives," said Blanco.

Blanco encourages residents to keep their heads held high, because this too shall pass. She says the "new normal" will be better in many ways.

"They will have lost things that give them pain," said Blanco. "But at the same time if they can survive the flooding they can survive the rebuilding."

 
 
 
 
 

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For the second consecutive year, the Saints start their season with three consecutive losses. New Orleans lost to Atlanta 45-32 Monday night.
  
The game started well as the Saints jumped out to a 7-0 lead, but the game turned when De'Vante Harris ran over returner Tommylee Lewis, causing a muffed punt and giving Atlanta the ball on the New Orleans 11-yard line.


Three pays later, the Falcons scored its first touchdown of the game to tie the score at 7.
 
New Orleans banged up defense couldn't slow down Atlanta for much of the game. The Falcons rushed for 217 yards. Devonta Freeman rushed for 152 yards and also had 52 yards receiving.
 
Atlanta QB Matt Ryan threw for 240 yards and two touchdowns. He was sacked twice and did not turn the ball over.
 
Saints QB Drew Brees threw for 376 yards and three touchdowns. He was intercepted once. Former LSU Tiger Deion Jones caught a tipped pass and returned it 90 yards for a touchdown.
 
New Orleans will look for its first win this Sunday at San Diego.  

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LSU interim head coach Ed Orgeron promises changes to LSU’s offense. The Tigers rank dead last in the SEC in passing and 12th in the league in total offense. Orgeron says they want to spread the ball around and make the passing game more dynamic.


"I have a different passing game, we want to be more creative, find ways for the quarterback to get the ball down the field, throwing it," Orgeron said.
 
Orgeron replaces Les Miles, who was criticized for his antiquated offense that included poor clock management. Coach “O” says he doesn’t want to repeat the mistakes made in the past.
 
"We are going to work very hard on that practice, we are going to work very hard on clock management," Orgeron said. "I'll have someone in the press box that is specifically in charge of clock management and game management."
 
Orgeron will make his debut as interim head coach on Saturday night when the Tigers take on Missouri. He wants his team to feel strong on Saturday, so he’ll have them on the practice field less during the week. 
 
"We'll play with energy, less time on the practice field, more time in the meeting room, hopefully we're fresh and hopefully you'll see some excitement on sideline, I know one guy who is excited." 
 
Orgeron has suspended indefinitely defensive tackle Davon Godchaux. He was arrested early this morning on misdemeanor charges after he was also involved in what the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s office is calling a tussle with his girlfriend.
 
Godchaux was charged with false imprisonment, domestic abuse battery/child endangerment. A 10-month old was in the room with the fighting couple.  
 
 

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Education leaders in Louisiana are looking at ways to improve public education, in compliance with a new federal law that goes into effect next school year. State Superintendent John White says the Every Student Succeeds Act is the first federal education law passed since 2001, and it requires states to outline a plan for improving education. He says he’s confident Louisiana can make great strides in education, as long as the students remain the focus of the discussions.

“We must not allow our debate to be distracted by the adult issues that for too long have characterized not just public education, but many realms of public policy in our state,” White said.

During Governor Bobby Jindal’s second term, White was involved in a very public spat with Jindal over Common Core academic standards.

White says Louisiana is making strides in education, like improving math and reading test scores among 4th graders and overall ACT scores. He says better preparing teachers while they are still in college could also have an impact in K-12 classrooms.

“Just as lawyers, doctors, and architects, our teachers should receive a full year residency in the classroom so that teaching can be treated as a white collar profession, just as those others are,” White said.

White says in the near future, they will draft the framework for a plan to improve education in Louisiana. He says the plan outline will be made available to the public.

“Our goal in issuing this draft framework will be to elicit questions, to promote dialogue, to ensure that every corner of our state has had a chance to speak on specific ideas,” White said.

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Michelle Southern reporting.
LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva spoke with reporters along with interim Head Coach Ed Orgeron today. He said making the decision to terminate Les Miles was not an easy one to make, but changes within the program had to take place.


"A change is necessary to give the players the best opportunity to succeed," said Alleva. "And at the end of the day, it's all about the players. And their experience and where they're going in their lives."

Alleva said Miles is loved by his players because he cares about them as people and he did a great job developing them into fine young men. Alleva said he felt that, at this time, Coach O is the right man to take over the program.

"His enthusiasm is contagious," said Alleva. "He has outstanding leadership characteristics, and I still believe this team has great things ahead of it."

Miles was criticized for not being able to produce an effective offensive line. In his introduction to LSU, Orgeron said there will be changes under his leadership.

"You can expect a new coaching staff and a new style of play on offense," said Orgeron.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Former LSU football coach Les Miles said he’s feeling good one day after his firing. Miles was a guest this morning on the “Dan Patrick Show on DirecTV’s Audience.” Miles says he was told of his firing during a face-to-face meeting with Athletic Director Joe Alleva and the Tigers former head man said he didn’t fight the decision.


"I'm for the Tigers, and anything that they see that makes the Tigers better then I'm for it," said Miles.

Miles was the head coach at LSU for 11-plus seasons. He won 77-percent of his games, including a BCS National Championship and two SEC titles. The mad hatter says he’s fortunate to have the opportunity to coach the Tigers.

"Are you kidding me? I have had a great run at LSU and I have enjoyed myself the entire time," said Miles.

This Saturday LSU will host Missouri for homecoming. Miles says he may go to Tallahassee to see Florida State play North Carolina. His son, Manny, is a walk-on quarterback for the Tar Heels. During the nearly 10-minute interview, Miles indicated he would like to coach again.

"I would have a difficult time not being involved in the game and not being a coach," said Miles.
 
 
 

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A new poll shows it’s a tight race for the open US Senate seat in Louisiana. John Couvillon, with JMC Analytics and Polling, says five candidates have an opportunity to make the runoff as there’s been movement since he surveyed this race in July.

“John Kennedy has dropped quite a bit in the poll, and the other candidates Foster Campbell and Charles Boustany have stayed relatively constant, although they currently are dominating the field,” Couvillon said.

The poll paid for by Congressman John Fleming’s campaign shows Congressman Charles Boustany and Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell are tied for the lead at 15%, and Fleming and New Orleans attorney Caroline Fayard are just behind them at third and fourth place respectively. Couvillon says former front runner John Kennedy’s numbers have dropped 7 percentage points to 11%.

“The challenge that Kennedy has right now is the perception of overconfidence, compounded by the fact that he has not yet been on TV or made appearances and so forth,” Couvillon said.

Couvillon says the poll also found that 25% of voters are still undecided, which he says is not surprising.

“Nothing abnormal about that because this is a late breaking race in a crowded field, and obviously those numbers are going to start to ratchet down,” Couvillon said.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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Presidential candidates, Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, will duke it out tonight in their first debate. The debate will air from 8 to 9:30 p.m. Central Time. ULM Political Science Professor Dr. Joshua Stockley expects viewers will see the combination of information and candidate sparring.

He says these are two individuals who recognize the clock is ticking on the campaign and the polls are tight.

“I would expect both candidates to attempt to make the case in some sort of policy fashion as to what their presidency would mean for Americans.”

Stockley says both Trump and Clinton will take shots at each other in an attempt to demonstrate to Americans how the other candidate is unfit.

“I would expect a lot of attention to be given to their plans for achieving prosperity, simultaneously, what are their plans for securing this country.”

Stockley says the candidates will likely touch on the recent shootings around the country and the protests that are sparking. He says African Americans and the law enforcement community have some questions to be answered.

“The future president of the United States needs to have a plan to address the issues that certain segments of our population are having with our law enforcement community.”

 

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After 114 wins, a BCS National Championship and two SEC championships, Les Miles is no longer the head coach at LSU. Miles, along with LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron were let go, after a bad loss to Auburn to drop their record to 2-2.


Safety Jamal Adams says Miles spoke with the team before he left.

"That man is so passionate about LSU. He's been here for 12 years, he recruited me," said Adams. "I think that he was very emotional as far as letting go."

Senior wide receiver Travin Dural of Breaux Bridge says he showed up to a 5:00 meeting and never thought he would be told that Miles was let go.

"I'm still surprised. I wasn't expecting this at all," said Dural. "Coach Miles is a great coach and he's done a lot of great things for this program."

South LaFourche High School and Northwestern State grad, Ed Orgeron, takes over as the interim head coach. He was the Tigers defensive line coach and a former head coach at Ole Miss and interim head coach at USC. Dural looks forward to what Coach “O” can bring to the team.

"He's very energetic and has a lot of energy. He's always ready to go," said Dural. "He knows a lot about football, he's been in this position before so I'm expecting him to have some success."
 
 
 

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Monday is the deadline for Livingston parish pet owners to claim pets that were lost in the flood, and then shelters will start adopting them out. Executive Director of the Humane Society of Louisiana, Jeff Dorson, says they have been sheltering over 500 pets from the Livingston parish area since the flood, but they could only hold them for 45 days.

“If people haven’t reclaimed their animals by now, we’re going to allow the public to adopt them out. So that was a grace period we established with our rescue partners,” Dorson said.

Dorson says people who lost a pet should check the Livingston Reuniting Pets Facebook page or contact the Humane Society of Louisiana. He says adoption counselors can help people find their lost pets.

“Try and have a picture of your pet, any kind of medical records, anything to help us determine proper ownership. That would go a long way,” Dorson said.

Dorson says pets are being sheltered around Louisiana and in other states, so finding a pet after this deadline will be a challenge. He says there is a local shelter people can visit if they want to adopt a pet that was displaced during the flood.

“We have a wonderful disaster center for pets in Amite. It’s in week number three now. We have about 30 dogs,” Dorson said.

 
 
 
 
 

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Tonight's Saints-Falcons game marks the 10th anniversary of the Mercedes Benz Superdome reopening after Hurricane Katrina. Former Governor Kathleen Blanco was instrumental in prioritizing the repair of the football stadium.

Blanco says the building's roof was badly damaged and it was a symbol of despair for New Orleans. The former governor says despite the criticism, she knew they could turn the dome back into a symbol of victory.

“Every square inch of it, the ceiling, the seating, the walls, every square inch of it was now covered with mold and mildew and it was really, really a nasty place.”

Blanco says repairing the stadium in nine months rather than the predicted 2 years was a huge endeavor. She says Saints owner Tom Benson promised if they could open the Superdome before the 2006 season, he wouldn’t move the Saints.

“And he said the NFL did not want to be seen as leaving one of its cities in its most dire moment.”

Blanco faced criticism as many wondered why fix the Superdome when thousands needed help. The former governor says the money could only go into repairs of the building and they received funds from the NFL and FEMA. She says in the end, she received many public apologies.

“But I knew as governor, it was more than just putting a football stadium back together. It was highly symbolic. You know, people here love the Saints whether they’re winning or losing.”

 
 

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