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Death Penalty Trial Set for Ian Paul Howard in 2017 LA Murder of Cpl. Michael Paul Middlebrook
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Thread: Death Penalty Trial Set for Ian Paul Howard in 2017 LA Murder of Cpl. Michael Paul Middlebrook

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    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Death Penalty Trial Set for Ian Paul Howard in 2017 LA Murder of Cpl. Michael Paul Middlebrook


    Lafayette police Cpl. Michael Paul Middlebrook





    Lafayette police officer killed in shootout at Big Boy convenience store, State Police say


    The Associated Press

    LAFAYETTE (AP) A Lafayette police officer was fatally shot after he responded to a call at a convenience store on Sunday, officials said.

    Master Trooper Brooks David with the Louisiana State Police said that around 10 p.m., authorities received a call about a battery and shots fired at a Big Boy convenience store on Moss Street and Van Buren Drive. When the officer arrived, the suspect allegedly opened fire, which led to a shootout. The officer was pronounced dead at the scene.

    David said two other people suffered non-life-threatening injuries and were taken to hospitals.

    Authorities said the suspect fled on foot, but was captured a short time later.

    Investigators did not immediately give the identity of the officer or the suspect.

    http://www.theadvocate.com/acadiana/...f9bcb50a0.html
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    State Police ID man accused of shooting, killing Lafayette officer at Big Boy convenience store

    By Grace Toohey
    The Advocate

    Update, 2:40: Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations identified the shooter as 28-year-old Ian Paul Howard of Lafayette. Howard was arrested and booked into the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center on one count of first-degree murder of a police officer, one count of attempted murder of a police officer, and two counts of attempted murder.

    Original story:

    LAFAYETTE — A Lafayette police officer was shot and killed Sunday night at a convenience store on Moss Street by a gunman who was soon taken into custody, said State Police spokesman Master Trooper Brooks David.

    Cpl. Michael Paul Middlebrook, a 9-year veteran with the Lafayette Police Department, died Sunday night in the incident, said Lafayette police spokesman Cpl. Karl Ratcliff.

    Two other people were injured in the shooting but are expected to survive, David said.

    Police were called to the Big Boy Discount Zone around 10:30 p.m. Sunday about an aggravated assault with a gun, but the call was upgraded to a shooting before officers arrived, David said.

    When police arrived, gunfire was exchanged with a shooter, David said, with at least one bullet striking and killing Middlebrook. The shooter has not been identified.

    State Police were called in to investigate the shooting.

    Avery Cross, 29, went to the convenience store, 3601 Moss St., to buy a drink minutes before the Lafayette police officers arrived, he said Monday morning. The front doors to the shop were locked, which was uncharacteristic for the 24-hour store, he said, but soon a store employee came out front to explain there had been a shooting, even pointing out the bullet holes in the window.

    A cashier had been injured in the shooting and was in the bathroom waiting for help, Cross said he was told.

    Cross said soon after two officers showed up, and one went inside to check on the injured employee. Cross said no one knew the gunman was inside the store.

    "The cop didn't know that the (armed) guy was still in there," Cross said. "So when he walked in, the guy popped out and started shooting."

    Cross said he heard at least five shots from inside the store. He said the shooter then came outside and fired into the air, yelling at people to back up.

    "I heard the shooting and I just started running," Cross said. "When it was happening, the only thought was just to make it home."

    After living in that part of Lafayette, Cross said he has seen other shootings before, but he expected the violence to end once police officers arrived.

    "When you see a cop you think everything will settle down," Cross said. "It didn't happen like that."

    Lisa Zerbe lives across Moss Street from the convenience store, and said she heard at least 40 shots over the span of the shooting Sunday night. She called 911.

    "When I heard that many (shots) and I heard people crying, I was like, 'I'm dialing right now,'" Zerbe, 48, said. She said she was on the line with the dispatcher as shots rang out, squatting to stay below the windows. "I mean, it is ridiculous."

    Middlebrook was born in Thibodeaux and spent his career in the patrol section of the Lafayette Department "helping and truly serving the community, as was his passion," Ratcliff wrote in a news release.

    In March, Middlebrook was honored with the state's Heart of Law Enforcement Award for collecting food that would otherwise go to waste and distributing it to those in need.

    "The Lafayette Police Department is devastated by this sudden loss," Ratcliff wrote. "We ask that you keep Corporal Middlebrook’s family and the Lafayette Police Department in your thoughts and prayers."

    Middlebrook leaves behind a wife, a 3-year-old daughter, two stepdaughters, and his parents, police said in the release.

    http://www.theadvocate.com/acadiana/...f9bcb50a0.html
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    DA to seek death penalty against Lafayette officer's accused killer

    By KATC News

    District Attorney Keith Stutes said he plans to seek the death penalty against Ian Howard, the man accused in the slaying of Lafayette Police Cpl. Mike Middlebrook.

    Stutes made the announcement during a Wednesday hearing to determine if the 27-year-old Howard can afford to hire his own attorneys. The hearing began shortly after a grand jury handed up a first-degree murder indictment against Howard in Middlebrook’s death.

    Fifteenth Judicial District Judge Jules Edwards was set to hear other issues on Wednesday, including a preliminary examination detailing the initial facts in the case But the hearing ultimately centered around whether Howard could in fact afford to hire his own attorney, as he had previously indicated to a commissioner three days after his arrest.

    Howard appeared in the heavily guarded courtroom shackled and wearing an orange-striped jumpsuit and sheriff-issued bulletproof vest. Four Lafayette Parish sheriff’s deputies escorted him into the courtroom, and at least eight more armed deputies and bailiffs were present during the hearing. At least another six deputies wearing bulletproof vests marked with “INTEL” stood guard outside the courthouse.

    No one from the public attended the hearing.

    Speaking in court, Howard claimed he hadn’t been able to make a phone call since his arrest, including to contact his parents about his legal representation.

    “I have the financial capability to hire a lawyer, but I was never able to talk to a lawyer,” he told the judge, adding that he had never hired the attorneys with the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center who have begun mounting his defense.

    The New Orleans-based nonprofit organization has a contract with the Louisiana Public Defender Board to represent capital cases that could lead to life imprisonment or the death penalty. Attorney Stephen Singer had filed a number of motions in the case, including about the allegations that Howard hadn’t been allowed a phone call.

    Prosecutors responded to the allegation in a court filing alleging the Lafayette Parish warden had offered Howard daily phone calls, which he denied, and that he never asked to speak to either his parents or attorneys.

    Howard’s parents were not present in court, but his father filed a sworn affidavit on his behalf to confirm he could not afford a private attorney. But the judge required Howard to make that claim on his own, which he would not do.

    “I have a friend who’s a lawyer. He could probably represent me for free,” Howard told the judge. But he would not provide those names in court or provide any evidence that he had the financial ability to hire his own lawyer.

    Edwards finally had Howard speak with the local public defender, Chad Ikerd, who first met with Howard after his arrest. Howard argued in court that Ikerd was not the same public defender he had spoken with.

    After conferring with the defender in private, Howard agreed to the representation of the LCAC attorneys who enrolled on his behalf.

    Because of Howard’s indictment, he is now in line for a bond hearing that will happen after his Oct. 24 arraignment.

    State Police arrested Howard the night he’s accused of shooting and injuring two clerks at a Moss Street convenience store and shooting and killing Middlebrook when he responded to the scene. Howard was also accused of shooting at another officer after the incident.

    http://www.katc.com/story/36574330/d...ddlebrook-case
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    Lafayette board votes to rename school for Cpl. Michael Middlebrook

    The Lafayette Parish School Board voted unanimously Wednesday to rename Plantation Elementary in honor of late Lafayette Police Cpl. Michael Middlebrook.

    The transition to the new name will begin immediately, but could take several months as changes are made to letterheads, school clothing and more.

    Middlebrook was shot to death on Oct. 1 while responding to a disturbance call at a Moss Street convenience store. His alleged killer, Ian Paul Howard, may face the death penalty if convicted.

    Lafayette Police Chief Toby Aguillard said his department was very touched by the honor.

    As chief of police, I can tell you that Michael was an exceptional person and an exceptional officer. He gave his life for our city and for our citizens, Aguillard said. I can think of no greater monument to Michael than to name a school after him, a place where kids will learn and their laughter will almost continuously be around and be heard.

    Principal Anne Hermann said she was in support of the change.

    Our school is a school of leadership. Cpl. Michael Middlebrook was a leader in our community, and what a wonderful example for us to continue to educate our students with him as an example and the name of our school, she said.

    The school board deferred a proposal to rename N.P. Moss in honor of late Lafayette dentist Dr. Raphael Baranco. That will be discussed at a later date, when Baranco's family is able to be in attendance.

    N.P. Moss will become a neighborhood elementary school in 2019, at which point the proposed name change would take place.

    https://www.theadvertiser.com/story/...ook/934427002/
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

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    Edited:

    Lafayette's 2019 court docket includes two possible death penalty cases


    By Amanda McElfresh
    The Daily Advertiser

    A Jan. 15, 2019 hearing is scheduled for Ian Paul Howard.

    Howard is charged with first-degree murder in the October 2017 shooting death of Lafayette police officer Cpl. Michael Middlebrook. He also faces three counts of attempted first-degree murder for allegedly shooting three others in the same incident.

    If convicted in Middlebrooks death, he could receive the death penalty.

    Howard has pleaded not guilty, although his attorneys may consider an insanity defense. If the case goes to trial, that is expected by the end of 2019.

    Howard is being held in the Hunt Correctional Center in St. Gabriel.

    https://www.theadvertiser.com/story/...19/2374679002/
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    Trial delayed for accused cop killer Ian Howard

    Court date now set for early 2020

    By Wynce Nolley
    KATC News

    The trial date for the man accused of gunning down a Lafayette Police Department officer and wounding three others, Ian Paul Howard, has been pushed back to early next year.

    Howard was in court Monday before 15th Judicial District Judge Jules Edwards as his defense attorneys sparred with state prosecutors over several motions in his attempted murder case.

    The defense is seeking access to physical evidence including the chance to inspect Howards vehicle that was at the crime scene, which is currently in the possession of the Louisiana State Police.

    Howards attorneys were also asking the judge to exclude certain pieces of evidence, including all statements made by Howard and all video footage taken at the crime scene.

    Edwards had previously set an Aug. 30 deadline for the state to list which of Howard's statements and videos and photographs will be used at trial.

    The defense stated that it could not begin its work on the litigation until it received notice of exactly what evidence the state intends to use. However, the prosecutor countered that the state will use all evidence they have, and that they've already told that to defense attorneys.

    They have had everything in discovery for over a year, said Assistant District Attorney Kenny Hebert. We dont even know what the plea is: not guilty, not guilty by reason of insanity. We dont know what their defense is going to be.

    Assistant District Attorney Alan Haney then explained to the court that he had an informal conversation with defense attorney Elliott Brown while the two were in court for a separate case. Haney said he had discussed with Brown what evidence the state was planning to use.

    However, Haney admitted that he had not entered his account into the official court record.

    We have an order that was not complied with, said Edwards.

    I disagree with the ruling that I didnt comply with the order, said Haney. I told him in person, but I should have put it in writing.

    Im giving you a choice in either excluding any and all statements or stay (delay) the trial, said Edwards.

    The state agreed to have the trial pushed back, which the judge moved from Nov. 18 to Jan. 21, 2020.

    Howard, 29, has two pending cases: a first-degree murder case in the Oct. 1, 2017 shooting death of Lafayette Cpl. Michael Middlebrook - for which prosecutors intend to pursue the death penalty - and in a separate case, three charges of attempted first-degree murder that involve the other alleged victims.

    No date has yet been set for his first degree murder charge trial; the state has said they plan to seek the death penalty in that trial.

    Defense counsel will now have until Oct. 31 to make a decision on presenting an insanity defense.

    Howard will be back in court on Sept. 30.

    https://www.katc.com/news/lafayette-...ler-ian-howard
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    Delay granted for accused Middlebrook shooter

    By KATC News

    As expected, a district judge has granted a delay requested by attorneys for the man accused of killing Cpl. Michael Middlebrook.

    Ian Howard faces two cases in connection with the October 2017 incident at a Lafayette convenience store. One is a capital case; the state is seeking the death penalty in the slaying of Middlebrook. Three other people were in the store last night, and two were injured; Howard faces a second case with three counts of attempted first-degree murder in that one.

    Earlier this month, Howard's lawyers filed several motions, including one that asked for additional time to file more motions. The judge gave them more time for that, and the motion filed asked for a delay in making a decision about an insanity defense. Judge Jules Edwards granted that motion, giving the attorneys another year - until December 2, 2020 - to make that decision in the attempted murder case.

    The other motions, which are set for hearing in January, want the court to throw out evidence taken from his house during the execution of search warrants, they want the trial moved to another venue. All these recent motions were filed in the second case, the attempted first-degree murder case. There was a January 21 trial date in that case, but since the judge has allowed the defense until December 2020 for making a decision about an insanity plea, that trial date won't go forward.

    The motion Edwards granted outlines the work required to determine if an insanity defense is warranted - research, medical examinations and tracking down witnesses - and also points out that a decision about an insanity defense in the attempted murder case would also impact the murder case.

    The pending motions include a motion to suppress evidence seized during the execution of a search warrant at Howard's home. According to the motion, 10 search warrants were executed during the investigation: one at the scene of the crime, one for a vehicle, one for Howard's apartment, two for cellular phones, one for Howard's person, one for Howard's Facebook account, two for his medical records, and one for the medical records of the two injured victims.

    The motion claims the searches were conducted using warrants that were invalid, not based on probable cause and overly broad, and that the searches exceeded the scope of the warrants. These are common claims made by defendants seeking to suppress evidence against them in criminal cases.

    In this case, Howard wants all evidence seized at his apartment to be suppressed with the exception of a handgun seized. He wants all evidence, including DNA, related to his cell phone suppressed, he wants his medical records suppressed and he wants his Facebook account suppressed.

    Howard also wants his trial moved, because there's too much prejudice in the minds of Lafayette jurors to give him a fair trial. The motion outlines pre-trial publicity, including media coverage of the incident two years ago, as well as the statements issued by government officials in the wake of Middlebrook's death. The motion states that media coverage of Howard's cases is "thorough" and not likely to cease being thorough.

    The motion notes how many times a KATC video was viewed, as well as the renaming of a local school in Middlebrook's honor. The defense have since that time obtained subpoenas for several media outlets, including KATC.

    Howard remains incarcerated.

    https://www.katc.com/news/lafayette-...ebrook-shooter
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    State prosecutors push back on Ian Howard's request for trial by judge in non-capital case

    By Ashley White
    Lafayette Daily Advertiser

    State prosecutors are objecting to the decision to allow a man accused of fatally shooting a Lafayette Police officer and injuring three others to have a trial by judge, rather than a jury, in his attempted murder case.

    Alan Haney, a prosecutor in the Lafayette-based 15th Judicial District Court, filed the dispute in court arguing Ian Howard's attorneys failed to request a trial by judge in his attempted murder case before the deadline to do so passed.

    The 30-year-old Howard faces a separate capital murder trial in the shooting death of Lafayette Cpl. Michael Middlebrook. The shooting occurred Oct. 1, 2017, at the Big Boy Discount Zone in north Lafayette.

    Howard and his defense attorneys, Stephen Singer and Elliot Brown, requested the trial by judge for the attempted murder cases when Howard amended his not guilty plea to not guilty by reason of insanity last week. When the request was granted by 15th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Julian Edwards III, prosecutors requested more time to research the request.

    Howard is accused of shooting and injuring Lafayette Officer Logan Signater, Craig Leopaul and Ameen Alfata in a Moss Street convenience store in 2017. He is facing three attempted first-degree murder charges.

    A trial date has not been set in that capital case. A trial by judge is not an option in a capital case.

    In the objection, Haney said state law requires a defendant to request a trial by judge 45 days before the case is set for trial. And a 2012 judgment from the Louisiana Supreme Court states the trial date must "refer to the initial trial setting of the matter," according to Haney's court filing.

    In Howard's case, the original trial date for the attempted murder case was scheduled for Sept. 24, 2018, according to court filings. It has been delayed multiple times. When the request for a trial by judge was granted on Jan. 2, the trial date was scheduled for July 13, more than 45 days ahead of that planned trial date.

    Howard is scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 21 when Edwards will likely hear arguments from Howard's attorneys about suppressing evidence.

    https://www.theadvertiser.com/story/...ge/4435327002/
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    Coronavirus forces delay in trial of Ian Howard, accused of killing Lafayette police officer

    The first trial date for the man accused of murdering Lafayette Police officer Michael Middlebrook and wounding three others has been pushed to Nov. 9, the direct and indirect result of the coronavirus pandemic.

    Ian Howards lawyers with the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center say quarantined staffers have been unable to complete field interviews and other tasks necessary for Howards insanity defense, and that a trial on the previously scheduled date of July 13 will be impossible.

    Moreover, the states public defender board on April 3 voted to redirect about $335,000 in state funding from contracted nonprofits to local indigent defense offices, which are suffering from loss of local revenues. The funds include allocations for expert witnesses in capital cases, with a substantial amount of work still to be done by mental health experts in Howards case, his lawyers said in a filing this month.

    That work includes further examinations of Howard, reviewing records related to his mental health history, review state expert witness reports and trial preparation, according to the filing.

    No one disputes that Howard shot four people including Middlebrook in separate but closely timed incidents on the night of Oct. 1, 2017 at a Lafayette convenience store. But his lawyers say his schizoaffective disorder impaired his ability to tell right from wrong, and that that the shootings are entirely motiveless.

    Howard first shot a person in the parking lot and a store employee with his own gun and left the scene, his lawyers say. He then returned without the first gun to accompany a responding officer, Middlebrook, to the store entrance. At that point he took the store managers gun, shot Middlebrook and wounded another officer.

    District Attorney Keith Stutes Office is seeking the death penalty for the killing of Middlebrook, which will be tried in a separate case after a verdict on three attempted murder charges.

    Howards lawyers promised not to seek additional trial delays in January when notifying the court they would pursue an insanity defense, but that was based on the assumption of an additional six months of preparation, they said.

    A large number of witnesses remain to be interviewed, documents examined and experts to be consulted, the filing states.

    https://www.theadvocate.com/acadiana...f64a1346d.html
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

    "Y'all be makin shit up" ~ Markeith Loyd

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    Ian Howard's defense in turmoil after termination of lead counsel

    By Ben Myers
    The Advocate

    Legal representation for the man accused of murdering a Lafayette Police officer is in turmoil after the lead defense lawyer, Stephen Singer, separated from the nonprofit organization handling the case.

    Singer on May 14 was terminated from the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center, which represents indigent defendants in death penalty cases, according to the organizations filing in the case last week. The filing, which suggests that Singers departure was acrimonious, requests that Judge Jules Edward determine who is now representing the defendant, Ian Howard.

    Howard signed a retainer agreement with Singer, who sent the agreement to the capital assistance center, according to the filing. The capital assistance center acknowledges Howards right to discharge representation appointed through the public defender system, but the organization wants the judge to ensure Howard has knowingly done so.

    The reasons for Singers departure were not immediately clear Monday. The move follows the state public defenders board decision to redirect about $335,000 from contracted nonprofits to district offices, but strong language in the filing suggests other circumstances at play.

    The organization has ruled out working alongside Singer, given the circumstances of the termination of Mr. Singers employment from LCAC, subsequent events between Mr. Singer and LCAC, the posture of the case, the needs of the client and the difficulties foreseen in any co-working relationship, the filing states.

    The filing goes on to say that working with Singer would also prove unworkable for the staff of the LCAC and the office itself, and that the organization absolutely will not co-work this or any other case with Steve Singer.

    Elliott Brown, a capital assistance center lawyer who worked with Singer on the Howard case, said the organization will not comment beyond the filing. Singer declined comment.

    The shakeup comes at a critical moment for Howard, who is pleading not guilty by reason of insanity in two related cases involving the shooting of four people including Lafayette Police Cpl. Michael Middlebrook, the lone fatality at a Lafayette convenience store on the night of Oct. 1, 2017.

    The cuts to nonprofit public defense contractors eliminated money for mental health experts reviewing Howards case, prompting the capital assistance center to request a trial delay in the first case. That trial, on three attempted murder charges involving the non-fatal victims, had been firmly scheduled for next month after Edwards allowed multiple previous delays to allow the defense to investigate Howards mental health history.

    But there remains a substantial amount of work for defense experts and no money to pay them, according to the center.

    The judge allowed for another delay, and the first trial is now scheduled for Nov. 9. Howard is expected to be separately tried in the Middlebrook case some time thereafter. While the cases are technically separate, the capital assistance center is handling both because they stem from the series of incidents, and District Attorney Keith Stutes office is seeking the death penalty in the Middlebrook case.

    Howards lawyers have acknowledged that he shot all four victims. The first two were civilians that Howard shot with his own gun, and the second two, including Middlebrook, were responding officers who he shot with the store managers gun. But Howards lawyers, citing his schizoaffective disorder, say he was unable to tell the difference from right and wrong on the night of the shooting.

    https://www.theadvocate.com/acadiana...89df3f37b.html
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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