According to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Department, Brandon Scott Lavergne, the man charged with murder and kidnapping in the disappearance of Mickey Shunick, turned up in a New Orleans Hospital with multiple stab wounds on the same day Shunick went missing.
According to an incident report filed by a deputy with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Department, Church Point Resident Brandon Scott Lavergne turned up in a New Orleans hospital 20 hours after Shunick was last seen alive.
According to the report Lavergne claimed he drove into the New Orleans area earlier that afternoon to see a friend but had gotten lost and stopped at a gas station at around three that afternoon for directions.
That's when Lavergne claims he was approached and attacked without warning by a large white male who stabbed him and stole his wallet.
Lavergne told the deputy he then got back into his vehicle and drove around until he found Ochsner Hospital where he was treated for multiple stab wounds in the chest, back, neck and hand before being released.
What stands out in this report is Lavergne says he has no idea of where the attack took place. Not only did Lavergne claim he couldn't remember the name of the gas station where he stopped, when questioned Lavergne couldn't provide the deputy with the name of a single street, not a single business or even a vague description of a building or significant structure he had passed on the way to the hospital.
And according to the report and this is a direct quote from the deputy, "the more questions I asked the less Lavergne began to provide."
The deputy went on to write "I contacted my supervisor and told him Lavergne was not being cooperative".
TV10 will continue to bring you the latest on this and other stories.
Nothing Found in Possible Grave Site Search
St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz says that nothing was discovered during a search of three possible grave sites near the home of Brandon Lavergne.
Lavergne is the man police say killed Mickey Shunick.
Sheriff Guidroz said they received a tip from a farmer about three areas of disturbed ground that looked like a possible grave sites found in his rice field.
Tune into eyewitness news for more on this and other stories.
Nothing Found During Possible Grave Site Search
Who is Brandon Lavergne ?
Each day we find out more about the man police believe is responsible for Mickey Shunick's disappearance. Wednesday, TV0 learned that at the time of his arrest, a woman known as Lavergne's girlfriend, was brought into police headquarters for questioning, and later released.
Brandon Lavergne (33) is charged with 1st degree murder and aggravated kidnapping. Police have given few details about what led to the arrest. But we do know, Lavergne served time for a sex crime and was released in 2008 on good behavior.
More details are starting to surface about Lavergne's life before the arrest. Since Lavergne's arrest, details about his life prior to his alleged involvement in the Shunick case are starting to surface.
While we've learned about his incarceration for a sex crime, and his history of domestic abuse, we've now learned during the Shunick search, Lavergne was in Crowley attending church.
The pastor at Northside Assembly of God, which is located in Crowley, says Lavergne first started attending services after he got out of prison.
Lavergne was first introduced to Northside through their prison rehabilitation ministries program, and up until recently, Pastor Singley says Lavergne had not been attending.
However he was at their church service June 4th of this year. Less than a month after Mickey Shunick went missing. Which was right in the middle of the massive search for answers.
"He would come frequently on Sundays and over a period of time, I don't know how long it was, after time, he no longer attended here. We didn't see him."
The church is located right next door to its Northside Christian School, which has raised a few eyebrows from people since Lavergne is a tier 3 sex offender.
But, Pastor Loyd Singley says he knew of Lavergne's past and they worked with his parole officer to make sure he had no contact with children.
According to the Lafayette Clerk of Court Criminal Division, Brandon Scott Lavergne will stand before a Lafayette Parish Grand Jury on Wednesday, July 18, 2012 at 9:00 AM. He is charged with the aggravated kidnapping and murder of Mickey Shunick and failure to register as a sex offender. Lavergne has opted for a public defense.
You can count on TV10 to bring you the latest in this investigation.
Shunick Search Efforts Update
More than fifty days after Mickey Shunick went missing volunteers have maintained a home base, and they continue to make it a high priority.
The first headquarters launched at 100 Ryan Street on May 20th.The last place Shunick was seen. The search became so large, UL's Our Lady of Wisdom donated their space for a few days.
But Equusearch efforts continued to grow. Headquarters soon relocated to Blackham Coliseum, and it remained there for several weeks before a fourth move.
Now headquarters are open at the South College Center, just next to Lafayette Lanes. Despite the latest developments in Shunick's case volunteers remain dedicated to the search.
Since the end of June, this has been the Homebase for the Mickey Shunick efforts and although the crowds have dwindled somewhat, there's still many fundraisers in the works, and people are still stopping by to help.
Many of the volunteers here have been involved since day one, including joining in on the foot searches, posting fliers, raising money, and getting the word out, and two businesses have raised their hand to help.
Party time off Pinhook has agreed to participate in the "adopt an intersection" movement, which encourages people to buy Mickey yard signs and post them at intersections. It's 4 for $20.00 and all proceeds go towards the Shunick fund.
Counter culture, a yogurt shop right next door to party time, will donate proceeds to the Shunick fund as well.
Even though an arrest has been made, one of Mickey's closest friends says it hasn't stopped people from helping.
"Not a day goes by that I don't get three emails people explicitly asking when foot searches will start up again. So, it's really optimistic to see that people haven't been detracted that there's a killer and there's a conclusion" Brettly Wilson.
If you would like to find out more about upcoming fundraisers log on to the Find Mickey Now Facebook page. http://www.facebook.com/findmickeynow
The community search efforts for Mickey Shunick have been invigorated by the recent arrest of Brandon Scott Lavergne.
Shunick went missing on May 19th. But, despite recent light shed on the case by Lafayette Police, her location is still unknown.
The family and volunteers are just as adamant about finding Mickey as they were the morning she went missing.
But all of those flyers and t-shirts you've been seeing around town don't come cheap. Paying for those expenses to keep the "Find Mickey Movement" moving forward has been driving fundraising efforts.
Local businesses have stepped forward including several restaurants to hold benefits for Mickey and there are even more events in the works right now.
Next weekend at Counter Culture Frozen Yogurt on Pinhook, a portion of the proceeds will go toward the cause. The following weekend, an ATV ride is planned and the volunteers at headquarters tell us, we can expect similar fundraisers in August.
All of the proceeds raised through events, t-shirt sales and bracelet sales have been crucial for the Shunick family during this extremely difficult time.
Brandon Lavergne Criminal History
Brandon Lavergne was convicted of breaking into a woman's house in 1999. He plead guilty to blind folding her, tying her up and having her perform a sexual act on him. He went was sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2000. He served 85% of that sentence and was on supervised parole until February of 2010.
On May 31st of 2012 just weeks after Mickey disappeared he filed a motion to be removed from the sex offender registry. He had a hearing scheduled on August 9th to try and remove his name from the registry.
Arrest Made in Shunick Investigation
(LPD) The Lafayette Police Department would like to extend its appreciation to the Shunick Family, all of the law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation, countless volunteers, private business entities, and the public that have assisted in the search and continue to be there as this investigation remains ongoing. I must caution all of you that although an arrest has been made in this case, much work remains to be done.
Working with our Federal, State and local partners, the Lafayette Police Department has arrested Brandon Scott Lavergne and charged him with 1st Degree Murder and Aggravated Kidnapping. Lavergne is believed to be responsible for the disappearance of Michaela "Mickey" Shunick.
On May 19th of this year, the Shunick family reported Mickey's disappearance. She had not returned home, missed her brother's graduation from high school, had notified no one of her location, and did not respond to calls made to her cell phone.
On May 25, video evidence was discovered from an LCG facility that captured Mickey on her bike. Several vehicles were observed in the same video and broadcast to the public as vehicles of interest. All of the vehicles of interest were ruled out except for a white Chevrolet Z71 pickup. The driver as well as the vehicle was not ever identified nor did anyone come forward.
On May 26, Mickey's bike was located under the Whiskey Bay Bridge on I-10 with damage to the rear tire consistent with being struck by a vehicle.
On June 14, Investigators received information from a concerned citizen, regarding a white Z71 that may be involved in Mickey's disappearance. The vehicle in question was registered to Brandon Lavergne. Further investigation revealed that the truck was reported stolen in Montgomery County, Texas and later located in San Jacinto County, Texas on May 31st. The truck had been burned just days after police released photographs of the truck as a vehicle of interest.
Based on information and surveillance detectives were able to positively identify the truck that traveled directly behind Mickey in the video as belonging to Brandon Lavergne. Investigators are also able to place Brandon Lavergne in and around the location of where the bicycle was located.
On Thursday, July 5, Louisiana State Police conducted a traffic stop on Lavergne near the intersection of I-10 and I-49. He was arrested on an unrelated warrant and transported to the Lafayette Police Department.
During questioning at Lafayette PD, Lavergne requested an attorney and has refused to cooperate any further with the investigation. At that time, he was additionally charged with the aggravated kidnapping and murder of Mickey Shunick.
This has been a very difficult ordeal for the Shunick Family and we thank them for their continuous cooperation, encouragement, and support in our attempts to determine what happened to Mickey. We want the family to know that we will not rest until we can fully know what happened to her. We continue our efforts to locate and bring Mickey home.
This type of case can overwhelm one agency. A tremendous amount of time, equipment, and resources have been put into this investigation. I would be remiss in my duties if I did not acknowledge and thank all of the agencies and private businesses that have been with us from day one of this case: LPSO, ULPD, Lafayette City Marshal's Office, LSP, SMSO, SLSO, Iberia SO, Iberville SO, East Baton Rouge SO, Acadia SO, Patterson PD, FBI, US Marshal's Service, LSP Crime Lab, Acadian Crime Lab, C & C Technologies, and Holbrook Media. It is these types of partnerships that have made an arrest possible in this matter.
I will take questions at this time but I want to caution you that because the investigation is on-going, there is a lot of information that we will not be able to divulge or discuss.
Shunick went missing after leaving a friend's residence in the 100 block of Ryan Street at approximately 2:00 am on, May 19th. Lafayette Police later found Mickey Shunick's bike beneath the Whiskey Bay I-10 Bridge at Exit #127.