St. Charles deputies receive medals, honors at ceremony

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 7, 2000

LEONARD GRAY / L’Observateur / April 7, 2000

DESTREHAN – Jacob and Jackie Olsen aren’t old enough to remember their late uncle, James Alan Arterbury, but the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Officeremembers.

The family of Arterbury, who was shot and killed in 1973 when he responded to a disturbance at a Killona bar, received a posthumous Purple Heart at the annual awards ceremony for the department held Thursday at the Destrehan High School auditorium.

In attendance were his widow, Sylvia Arterbury Chauvin (who now works in the department’s Criminal Investigation Division) and two of his sisters, Gale Mello and Phyllis Olsen.

At the ceremony, hosted by Sheriff Greg Champagne, Deputy of the Year Cpl.

Michael Folse was honored, three deputies received medals of valor, the late Deputy Nelson Coleman’s family likewise received a Purple Heart, and dozens more deputies were recognized.

Coleman’s sisters, Bertha LeBeauf and Sgt. Ardine Boyd, received Coleman’smedal in honor of his 1982 death in the line of duty when he suffered a fatal heart attack during the apprehension of a suspect.

Brian LeBlanc of Covington was honored by Champagne for saving the life of Randy Ryan of Destrehan who accidently set himself on fire when his lawnmower exploded in April 1999.

Champagne proclaimed the “state of the department” to be “very, very good,” and pointed out the drop in overall crime, juvenile violence, serious traffic accidents and the newly-boosted radio system and correctional center.

Letters of commendation were presented to a host of deputies for their work on specific cases, as follows: Correctional officer Sgt. Markell Jones spotted a woman being attacked inthe parking lot of the courthouse over a security monitor and, unarmed, rescued the woman last March.

Deputies Shellie McCloud and Jason Guidry were honored for their swift actions in saving the life of fellow officer Lonnie Hamilton after he stopped breathing at his home in Ama.

9-1-1 Operator Dyana Comeaux acted swiftly in tracing information which led to the arrest of an armed robbery suspect last September.

Lt. Dwayne LaGrange, Cpl. Johnny Champagne, Sgt. Boyd Frickey and DeputyLaura Foman teamed up to help battle a house fire in Luling in January 1999.

Cpl. Michael Folse, who entered that same house to rescue an elderly man,received a Medal of Valor.

Sgt. Mark Candies, Cpl. Barton Barrios, Deputy Claude Adams, Deputy JasonGuidry, Deputy Leroy Doucette, Deputy Robert Villere and reserve deputies Bobby Gorman and Joseph Ogle teamed up to successful handle a sexual assault of juveniles and hostage situation in Luling.

Detective Chester “Skip” Kowalski and Deputy Jay Landry teamed to capture an armed robbery suspect in November.

Lt. Chris Canaski, Lt. Robert Dale, Sgt. Deborah Johnston, Sgt. PatriciaBaudoin, Detectives Rodney Madere, Renee Kinler, Chad Robichaux, Joe Lawler and Carl Jonkers together successfully captured a bank robber in September.

Detectives Rodney Madere and Robert Lynch closed the case of an armed robbery and shooting in June and received honors.

The Nov. 21, 1998 domestic violence incident in which a man threatened twoofficers with a gun and was himself shot and killed also resulted in those two officers, deputies Steve Cantelli and Chad Robichaux, being recognized for bravery beyond the call of duty. The internal affairs investigator whodetermined the deputies had acted correctly, Detective-Sgt. DeborahJohnston, was also recognized.

The Brian Matherne pedophile investigation likewise brought several honors to investigating officers Lt. Ricky Oubre, Detective Renee Kinlert and SylviaChauvin.

And the recent Des Allemands RICO drug case brought a unit citation for the Special Investigations Division, including Lt. Don Carter, Detective-Sgt. TedLegendre, detectives Terrance Major, Johnny Farrell, Allen Bryant and also clerk Kathy Walker. Sgt. Leland Dwight of the Louisiana State Police and JohnJ. Williams of the Drug Asset Recovery Team were also recognized.Lt. Chris Canaski, Detective-Sgt. Deborah Johnston, detectives RodneyMadere, Robert Lynch, Joe Lawler, Renee Kinler and deputy Bradley Walsh were honored with certificates for exceptional performance in the Debra Matthews murder case in March 1999.

Also in connection with that case, special assistance was recognized from crime scene technician Mike Jackson, Kenner Police detectives Michael Cunningham and Chad Jacquet and Jefferson Parish Sgt. Brady Buckley.In addition, Capt. Al Theriot was honored for his 40 years of service andDeputy Francis X. Landry was presented a Distinguished Service Award forhis 27 years of service.

Safe Schools officers received a unit citation, including Sgt. Warren LeBeauf,Sgt. Ardine Boyd, Cpl. Clyde Taylor, Cpl. Burley McCarter, Cpl. Donald “Kenny”Gagliano, Cpl. James Hebert, Cpl. Jimmy Robert Jr., and deputies DanielMoran, Kevin Doyle, Harold Jackson, Mark Smith and Steve Amedee.

The Criminal Investigations Division also received a unit citation, including Lt.

Chris Canaski, Detective-Sgt. Deborah Johnston, detectives Rodney Madere,Renee Kinler, Robert Lynch, Walter Fonseca Jr., Chad Robichaux, Joe Lawler,and also Christine Carter, Diahann Dufrene, Sylvia Chauvin and Catherine Phillips.

Shell Armstrong received a letter of commendation in the Special Services Division. TRIAD officers Michelle Oncale, Judy Fielder, Tessa Somme and SusieBreaux were honored.

Finally, the sheriff’s office-sponsored Explorer Post was honored. Adultleaders recognized included Detective Carl Jonkers, Cpl. Burley McCarter, Cpl.Michael “Mickey” Bergeron, Cpl. Jimmy Robert Jr., deputies Daniel Moran andWayne Joseph, and also Sandry Gilboy.

Explorer Scouts recognized included Destiny Dufrene, Jason Lynch, Chris Baird, Jack Gilboy, Jeff Laborde, Brandon Adams, Tanya Carter, Chad Hotard, Gerald Laborde, Tory Lazarus, Brandon Ledbetter, Adam Lejune, Kevin Ranatza, Joey Rome, Justin Smith, Dustin Smith, Trae Williams, Melissa Jonkers and Steve Ledet.

Return To News Stories