- Associated Press - Thursday, February 20, 2014

RAYVILLE, La. (AP) - Richland Parish District Attorney Mack Lancaster has agreed to reduce the charge from first-degree to second-degree murder for a Monroe man accused in connection with the death of a Rayville police officer.

The News-Star reports (https://tnsne.ws/1gkVOkx ) Anthony Oatis pleaded not guilty to the new charge during a hearing Wednesday, and a trial date was set.

Oatis was one of three men arrested in connection with the death of K-9 Sgt. Thomas Alexander in September 2010.

Alexander was shot and killed while responding to a burglary-in-progress call in Richland Parish.

Richard L. Long Jr., Monroe, pleaded guilty in January to first-degree murder in connection with the case.

Also arrested for the crime were Robert Walker, 53, of Rayville, who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in June 2011. Walker was determined not to have been the shooter, but reportedly arranged the burglary.

Oatis has been granted a change of venue for the trial which is set for May 5. The jury will be chosen in Ouachita Parish and the trial will either be held in Ouachita or Richland Parish.


Information from: The News-Star, https://www.thenewsstar.com

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