Shepherd Suspended



 Louisiana Senate President Joel Chaisson has suspended Sen. Derrick Shepherd’s right to participate on senate committees until the West Bank lawmaker’s legal woes are resolved.


Chaisson says Shepherd has accepted the suspension.



The beleaguered senator earlier resigned from his chairmanship of the Senate Local and Municipal Affairs Committee after Chaisson requested he do so following Shepherd’s indictment in April on federal mail fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy charges related to an alleged money-laundering scheme with an unlicensed bond broker.


The latest suspension came after Shepherd was arrested in Jefferson Parish on abuse charges stemming from his ex-girlfriend’s claims that he broke into her house, physically hurt her and stole her cell phone and some money. She has since said she lied about the incident and that she is still involved with the senator. Shepherd’s arrest, however, violated the terms of his federal bond, and he now is under house arrest until his trial in October.


Chaisson says the suspension doesn’t mean the senate president believes Shepherd is guilty of the charges, but “I feel that it is in the best interest of the Senate and the public that Senator Shepherd’s legal issues not become a distraction to the efficient operation of the Louisiana Senate.”


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