VERMILION PARISH, LA (WAFB) - A Vermilion Parish man is accused of stealing seven heifers and selling them at a stockyard.
Investigators with the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Livestock Brand Commission say a cattleman in Vermilion Parish reported to the Vermilion Parish Sheriff's Office and LDAF Brand Commission that seven heifers were missing from his pasture. The cattle were described as black, black baldy or red. All had the cattleman's brand on the right hip.
LDAF investigators say after researching brand inspection records, animal health traceability records, and stockyard records, it was discovered that seven heifers fitting the description given by the cattleman and carrying his brand were sold at a Louisiana stockyard on June 15, 2015.
"This is why we urge cattle producers to have their property tagged or branded. In the event there is a theft and if the cattle stolen are a common breed, they are more identifiable and traceable if there is a unique brand or other identifier such as a tag," said LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M.
Five of the heifers have been located in Louisiana and positively identified as those belonging to the cattleman. The other two heifers were shipped to other states. The seven heifers were sold at the stockyard for a total of $13,742.50.
Eighteen year old Jodi M. Richard of Erath, La. was arrested and booked into the Vermilion Parish Jail on July 14. Richard is charged with one count of theft. Bond is set at $25,000.
If convicted, Richard faces up to 10 years in prison, up to $10,000 in fines or both.