Independent staff writer Heather Miller took home the Louisiana Press Association’s first, second and third place honors in investigative reporting at the trade association’s 132nd Annual Convention in Marksville over the weekend. Miller’s “CONVICTed,” a story that examined the federal justice system’s use of questionable and unreliable witnesses against Lafayette businessman Mike Wyatt — in this case accepting the testimony of a local drug kingpin — took top honors. “Busted: Busted In Acadiana,” which led to the arrest of Busted founder Christopher Hebert on one count each of stalking and cyberstalking, won second place, and Miller’s “Need for Speed,” about the speed trap in Washington, La., and how the city illegally kept $200,000 in speeding fines that should have been turned over to the state, was honored with third place.
|Ind staff writer Heather Miller|
Miller also won first for her feature story “Come Back, Kid,” which chronicled Lafayette resident Brian Murphy’s recovery from a traumatic brain injury; Ind Managing Editor Walter Pierce won first for his news story “Out of Line,” about Broussard’s $800,000 bill for bypassing an LUS water meter over a five-year period; and Editorial Director Leslie Turk’s ongoing coverage of the Lafayette Housing Authority and low-income housing developments earned first place in continuing coverage of a single news event.
The paper won Best Front Page for its “Persons of the Year” cover about the school system’s Gang of Five; photographer Robin May won two firsts: Best Feature Photo and Best Photo Package for “The Business of Pleasure” and “Fresh Start,” respectively. The paper’s restaurant guide won Best Special Section.
Pierce won second place for Best Regular Column and for Best Feature Story. Turk and Miller placed second and third, respectively, for Best News Story.
In advertising honors, the paper’s A-Z summer guide won first, as did its annual Takin’ Care of Business ad feature. Ads for Coccolare Spa and Johnston Street Java won first place, as did the Acadiana Guitar Campaign; Ind graphic designer Nicole Manafi was the creative talent behind all three. The Ind’s Acadiana Center for the Arts ad by online development specialist Michael Lunsford won first in the online advertising category, animated. Lunsford also placed second in that category for an ad for Blue Moon Saloon. His and artist Francis Pavy’s design for the Acadiana365 calendar placed second in Best Web Project.
Graphic designer Hannah Herpin’s ad for Paul’s Jewelry won second for color ad, and graphic designer Jason Roy’s ad for Clerk of Court Louis Perret won second in the non-retail category.
The Independent competes in the Free Circulation and Special Interest Publication division. In all, the paper took home 30 edit and advertising honors, winning General Excellence for the “Busted” and “Hell to Pay” covers.
The Advocate, The Daily Advertiser, The Courier (Houma), Jennings Daily News, The Livingston Parish News (Denham Springs), the Tri-Parish Times (Houma), The West Side Journal, and the Zachary Plainsman News earned Newspaper of the Year honors in their respective divisions. Newspaper of the Year is not awarded in The Ind’s division.
A divided 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal reversed a Lafayette district judge’s ruling absolving the co-owner of a New Iberia accounting firm of liability in an embezzlement case.
Our View: It’s reasonable, temporary and invests in Lafayette’s future.
“I am only getting a little nervous about two projects — the proposed Sasol GTL facility [not the new ethylene plant] and the proposed G2X facility — both in Lake Charles. They need a hefty difference between oil and natural gas prices to make sense.”
Lower oil prices also might slow the growth of oil production in parts of the U.S., Canada and elsewhere because it will no longer be so profitable.
A Lafayette woman faces up to 20 years in prison for running up more than $1 million in unauthorized charges to her company credit card.
Signs that our state’s banking industry is undergoing a downsizing in 2014 were further confirmed today with the FDIC’s latest figures showing a third straight quarter in which Louisiana lost more banks and earned less money.
State police say a 47-year-old Lafayette man, who collected more than $83,000 in disability benefits, is accused of operating two businesses out of his home at a time when he claimed he had no income.
Facing opposition from a powerful industry, the governor and many in the Legislature, a New Orleans-area flood board's lawsuit against dozens of oil, gas and pipeline companies seemed doomed early on.
Thursday’s explosion aboard an oil production platform in the Gulf of Mexico is now under investigation by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement.
Money from the first and only settlement so far in a Louisiana flood board's lawsuit against dozens of energy companies will be placed in a special account dedicated to coastal restoration.
BP is heading to a federal appeals court in its effort to oust the administrator of damage settlement claims arising from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
The 59-41 Senate vote was one shy short of the 60 needed to clear the House-passed measure.
Spot bonuses to employees who go above and beyond on projects one of several reasons national mag calls BR-based biz bank a cool place to work.
The Director Search Committee interviewed the five men still in the running via video last week and is set to trim the field this week.
Telecom’s decision to halt deployment to more than 100 cities while it awaits net-neutrality rules appears to be little more than a temper tantrum.
Environmental (and political) junkies got a double fix when The Lens hosted a discussion between its environmental writer and the lead attorney in the levee board suit.
Follow The IND to hear Lens environmental reporter Bob Marshall's interview with Gladstone Jones, the lead attorney in the lawsuit against the oil and gas companies for coastal damages.
The $35B deal leaves the burning question about what it will mean for the thousands of these two service giants' local employees.
Broussard & David set up shop at the corner of Jefferson and Vermilion.
in light of falling oil prices, Forbes asks, “Will there be more?”
Lake Charles lets Acadiana companies in on the action as our neighbor to the west prepares for unprecedented growth.
A new study analyzes the state of the Lake Charles region and the impact 19 industrial projects will have on residents.
A U.S. magistrate judge calls “garbage” on behavior of attorneys for Progressive Waste Solutions.
The Lafayette food truck scene is slowing down but not stopping.
Lake-area financial institutions seeing green.