BOBBY ARDOIN Editor/Consulting Writer
The suspect in a fatal early Monday morning shooting that occurred at a recently-reopened Opelousas nightclub, has turned himself into local authorities, according to city police.
Craig Oliver Moore, 49 of Carencro, was booked Monday night into the St. Landry Parish Jail on one count of second degree murder and another count of aggravated assault with a firearm after turning himself in, a press release said.
Moore, who allegedly left the scene of the shooting outside Club Heels located at 404 South Academy Street following the incident, is accused by police of shooting Josh Sylvester, 33, of Breaux Bridge.
A press release issued by city police on Monday indicates that officers working security at Club Heels, responded to a shooting in a nearby parking lot. The security officers reportedly discovered a man suffering from a gunshot wound.
The club began operating again until 2 a.m. on Monday after operators of the club challenged the wording in an amended 2023 municipal ordinance which set the closing time for the club back to midnight on Sunday’s.
That ordinance revision was later challenged in 27th District Court, after the club owners pointed to what they said is an error in the wording of the new ordinance, according to city attorney Travis Broussard.
Brian Walker said in a St. Landry Now.com interview last Tuesday night that the club was forced to close down in July due to the creation of the new municipal ordinance but the club had reopened in November following the court decision.
At a meeting last Tuesday night, members of the Board voted 4-1 to allow the club to continue operating until 2 a.m. until a final agreement on the validity of the ordinance could be reached by city officials.
During the meeting Walker told the Board that he and his club managers take club security seriously. Walker said the club pays heavily each weekend for post-certified officers to work security inside Club Heels.
City Police Chief Graig LeBlanc issued a press release to St. Landry Now.com which said the police department supports the Board of Aldermen decision earlier in 2023 that restricts the sales and consumptions of alcoholic beverages until midnight on Sunday’s.
“While concessions have been made during the time that has passed between the discovery of a clerical error with the previously amended and adopted ordinance that has allowed establishments to operate after midnight on Sunday’s, the overall position of the Opelousas Police Department has not changed.
“The Opelousas Police Department believes that the public safety and quality of life benefits of adopting the ordinance in its corrected form, would be in the best interests of the community,” LeBlanc wrote in the press release.
Alderwoman Sherrell Roberts last Tuesday night cast the only “no” vote which allowed the club to continue operation at least temporarily, while Marvin Richard, Delita Broussard, Charles Cummings and Casity Davis Warren voted “yes.”
Roberts told St. Landry Now.com on Monday that she was following the wishes of her constituents that Roberts said want all clubs closed by midnight in the Academy Street area.