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St. Landry Parish man arrested for horse theft

November 22, 2017

Baton Rouge, La. (November 22, 2017) –Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said an investigation by LDAF Livestock Brand Commission Inspectors resulted in the arrest of Deamonte Davon Lee Chatman of Opelousas on Nov. 9, 2017 on three counts of livestock theft.

Chatman is accused of stealing three horses.

Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigation’s Gaming Enforcement Division executed the warrant at the Evangeline Downs Racetrack and Casino and booked into the St. Landry Parish Jail.

LDAF Livestock Brand Commission inspectors received a complaint from an Iberia Parish resident who reported that ​ three horses were stolen from the complainant’s property.

Upon investigation, LDAF inspectors said Chatman allegedly stole the complainant’s three horses, checked them in under his name a​t a​ Louisiana stockyard. The horses sold at auction on July 25, 2017 and payment was made to Chatman. The horses were valued at over $1,000.

“I can’t stress enough the importance of identification like tattoos and microchips,” Strain said. “I encourage all livestock owners to permanently identify their animals to aid in both theft recovery and traceability efforts.”

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The Livestock Brand Commission, under the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, is empowered to investigate all agricultural crime including livestock theft as well as farm machinery and equipment theft. All Livestock Brand Commission inspectors are commissioned by the Louisiana State Police and have full police powers in the performance of their duties.