‘Operation Summer Heat’ nets six suspects

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 24, 2002


LAPLACE – A “reverse sting” operation called “Operation Summer Heat” recently nabbed six men for attempting to hire the services of prostitutes in St. John the Baptist Parish. Five of the six suspects were from the River Parishes.

Those arrests, together with their charges, are:
• Keith J. Fremen, 49, 2204 Louisiana Ave., LaPlace, solicitation for prostitution, simple battery and two counts contempt of court.
• Thomas Saizan, 50, 7365 Boscage Blvd., Baton Rouge, solicitation for prostitution.
• Anthony Favorite, 46, 3150 Ann St., Vacherie, solicitation for prostitution.
• Ricky R. Billings, 43, 1901 Madewood Road, LaPlace, solicitation for prostitution.
• Wayne B. Lasseigne, 64, 708 Walnut St., LaPlace, solicitation for prostitution.
• Murphy M. Petit Jr., 42, 13 John Ave., LaPlace, solicitation for prostitution.

The undercover operation, began July 11 and was halted at noon the following day, according to Capt. Michael Tregre of the St. John Parish Sheriff’s Office, to protect the identities of the undercover officers.

It was launched as the result of several complaints by residents and business owners in the LaPlace area. As a result of the investigation, undercover agents from three parishes made the arrests, under the supervision of Detective Sgt. Troy Hidalgo.

Fortieth Judicial District Judge J. Sterling Snowdy placed a $2,500 bond on each arrestee. If found guilty, the penalty is a fine not more than $500, or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.

“I’m not going to let St. John Parish become another Bourbon Street, and I won’t put up with this foolishness,” Sheriff Wayne L. Jones said.

The encounters leading to the arrests were captured on audiotape, Jones said. “They’re very good cases.”