Orlando Sanders Jr. sentenced to 25 years for 2019 homicide

Published 4:50 pm Wednesday, April 26, 2023

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EDGARD — Orlando Sanders Jr. was sentenced to 25 years with the Department of Corrections this month for the shooting death of 47-year-old Rechelle Hotard of Reserve.

Sanders pleaded guilty to manslaughter in connection to the shooting, which occurred in the early morning hours of February 6, 2019.

Police discovered Hotard unresponsive on the ground in front of her home on West 17th Street in Reserve after neighbors reported hearing a scream and gunshots. Hotard had sustained multiple gunshot wounds to the abdomen and was pronounced deceased on the scene. Sanders, 15 years old at the time, was in police custody and charged with second degree murder less than 12 hours later.

Authorities were able to track Sanders’ location with help from surveillance video and witnesses who reported seeing him running from the scene. Neighbors told police that while Sanders was known in the community for vandalism and theft, the violent attack against Hotard came as a shock.

Appearing in court before Judge J. Sterling Snowdy on April 11, Sanders was given credit for all time served since February 6, 2019 (1,525 days).

Assistant District Attorney Niki Roberts prosecuted the case on behalf of the state.

Hotard was the sister of St. John the Baptist Parish President Jaclyn Hotard.