News Briefs From Across The State
By Monica Land
Incident may be gang-related
Authorities said the shooting death of a man early Sunday morning may be the result of a gang conflict. Marcus Hinton, 32, was shot in the back about 3:30 a.m., Feb. 26 as he and another person argued outside of the Imperial Palace nightclub on Highway 14 West.
Winston County Coroner Scott Gregory said the altercation involving Hinton and the suspect took place in the parking lot of the club and as Hinton tried to leave, he was shot in the back.
The unidentified suspect allegedly fired two shots, one hitting Hinton, and the other striking a female who was at the scene.
The woman was treated and released from the Winston County Medical Center.
The shooter left in a car and was believed to be headed for Memphis.
Jackson offers amnesty for fines
People with past-due tickets and misdemeanor fines will have two days next week to get right with the city of Jackson.
The Clarion-Ledger reports Jackson Municipal Court Services will offer a two-day amnesty program on Thursday and Friday, March 1 and 2.
The program allows people to pay off outstanding tickets and the like with their warrant and administrative fees waived. Last year, it yielded a record $316,000.
Eligible citations include traffic cases and misdemeanors except for DUI, domestic violence, crimes involving weapons and crimes against another person.
Bomb squad called to scene of house fire in Vancleave
The Biloxi Bomb squad has been called out to Vancleave to look at a suspicious device, that according to Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd.
According to Byrd, an abandoned house in Vancleave caught fire around 2 AM Saturday. As officials responded, Byrd said a device was discovered on the property.
Byrd said they aren’t sure what the device is, but he described it as something similar to a shell casing.
As a precaution, they have called in the bomb squad to investigate. Authorities are on the scene right now, and we will have more as details emerge on WLOX and on WLOX.com.
Woman gets prison time for Katrina fraud
A former Picayune woman has been ordered to serve nine months in prison and to repay $20,666.18 for double-dipping on disaster housing assistance after Hurricane Katrina.
The Sun Herald reports Stephanie Ordogne was sentenced Wednesday on a guilty plea to making false statements to the Housing Authority in Picayune for help from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Ordogne admitted making false statements for HUD recertification in Pearl River County in 2006, when she was subletting her Picayune home while also receiving duplicate housing assistance from HUD in another state.
She accepted a plea agreement in November. Ordogne faced a maximum prison term of five years.
2 charged in equipment theft scheme
Two men have been indicted on federal charges that they knowingly purchased trucks, tractors, lawnmowers and other equipment stolen from dealers in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi.
Joey Sam Tantillo and Michael Fralick were indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury in south Mississippi. The indictment said that in 2009 they placed orders for the equipment they wanted and two other men stole it from dealers in Rayville, La.; Centreville, Miss.; and Magnolia, Ark.
Tantillo, of Tickfaw, La., said Friday that he had not heard about the indictment and said he’s innocent. A number for Fralick wasn’t immediately available. Court records did not list attorneys for the men.