The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Slidell area man and is looking for two others in connection with the looting of multiple watercrafts docked in the area of Lakeshore Estates.
Last night, several area residents relocated their boats to that area in an effort to protect the vessels from the storm. Early this morning, one of those boat’s owner checked on his boat and discovered it had been broken into. He immediately called the Sheriff’s Office and reported the incident.
Deputies responded to the scene this morning and began an investigation. A short time later, a Sheriff’s detective questioned a man staying on a nearby boat. During questioning, the man admitted he witnessed a friend of his and another man take property early this morning from three nearby boats and place the property on his boat. The property was recovered and has since been returned to its rightful owners.
The stolen property has an estimated value in the thousands of dollars.
The man on the boat (Jerrett Pittman – 248 Deanna Dr, Slidell – DOB: 9/21/1994) was arrested and released on summons for L.R.S. 14:69 – Illegal Possession of Stolen Things.
Deputies are still looking for the two men who reportedly committed the looting. When located, they will be arrested and booked with L.R.S. 14:62.5 – Looting.
Sheriff Strain issued a strong warning to anyone considering taking advantage of others during this time. “We will absolutely not tolerate anyone preying on others during this time of disaster. If someone loots a business or home in St. Tammany Parish, the full force of this Sheriff’s office will be dedicated to finding them, putting them in jail, and making sure they are charged to the full extent of the law,” Sheriff Strain said.
Looting during a declared state of emergency carries a fine of not less than $5,000 nor more than $10,000 and imprisonment of not less than three years nor more than 15 years at hard labor, without benefit of probation, parole or suspension of sentence.