Houma man charged in deaths of 2 from Garyville

Published 12:13 am Saturday, May 27, 2017

LAPLACE — A Houma man is facing numerous criminal charges following a violent two-vehicle crash that claimed the lives of two Garyville residents.

District Attorney Bridget A. Dinvaut said Bryce Riggs, 21, was billed with two counts of negligent homicide and a misdemeanor negligent injuring charge, along with misdemeanors for driving left of center and careless operation of a motor vehicle.

“His attorney filed discovery motions on May 1, and we are proceeding with our prosecution,” Dinvaut said.

Louisiana State Police initially said distracted driving caused the Dec. 28 wreck in Garyville that killed Arlene Richard, 69, and Cecile Oubre, 91.

Richard was driving a Kia Sportage southbound on River Road at approximately 5:30 p.m. when a Dodge Ram pick-up, driven by 21-year-old Bryce Riggs, struck the vehicle while traveling northbound on River Road.

“Riggs was engaged in conversation with his passenger, 20-year-old Brent Crochet, and this distraction caused the Dodge to drift into the southbound lane and impact the Kia,” Troop B spokeswoman Melissa Matey said in December. “After the initial impact, the Dodge began to rotate and then rolled onto its roof. Riggs and Crochet both suffered moderate injuries and were transported to St. James Parish Hospital.”

The front seat passenger in the Kia, 60-year-old Evette Berthelot, suffered minor injuries and was taken to Ochsner Health Center – River Parishes.

Oubre — the left side, rear seat passenger in the Kia — was taken to University Medical Center in New Orleans with critical injuries, authorities said, and later died at the hospital.

Richard was pronounced dead on the scene.