Oct 102013
 
(From left) Christopher Davis, Joseph Davis and Sheldon Jefferson (via opcso.org)

(From left) Christopher Davis, Joseph Davis and Sheldon Jefferson (via opcso.org)

Joseph Davis, 17, pleaded guilty to four counts of forcible rape and one count each of second-degree kidnapping and armed robbery, and was sentenced to 40 years in prison last week for his role in the the rape of a Garden District woman in February, reports Katherine Sayre of The Times-Picayune. Davis “initiated the rape and wielded a gun in the assault,” Sayre reported; 16-year-old Sheldon Jefferson had previously agreed to serve 30 years for raping the woman; and 18-year-old Christopher Davis, the driver in the incident, had previously been sentenced to 35 years.

Oct 102013
 

Allan Katz and Danae Columbus

So who gets to decide how many judges are too many? Mayor Mitch Landrieu has strong feelings on the subject, based on his own experiences when he was in the private practice of law and his observations from the mayor’s office. There are too many judges and the money devoted to supporting empty courtrooms and under-worked judges could be better spent if the money was instead in the city’s general fund, Landrieu says. Continue reading »

Oct 092013
 
Prytania Theatre owner Rene Brunet laughs with his son, Robert Brunet (right), as he arrives at Sunday night's Oscar-watching party in February 2012. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Prytania Theatre owner Rene Brunet laughs with his son, Robert Brunet (right), as he arrives at Sunday night’s Oscar-watching party in February 2012. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Jean-Paul Villere

As a child of the 80s reared on cable and the small screen, my first opportunity to see The Wizard of Oz on the big screen came in a mid 90s summer-revival series at the State Palace, and the experience remains with me today.  First of all, the movie alone to be seen in this fashion should not be missed, I don’t care how many times you’ve seen it.  Secondly, to see a film in a somewhat decrepit but likely once masterful venue layers the sensory.  Creaky, spent springs and paint-chipped seating, flooring with decades of goo, and echoey cavern of yesterday celluloid dank and dark.  And then Mr. Brunet spoke. Continue reading »

Oct 082013
 
A rendering and tenant list of the Magnolia Marketplace shopping complex planned for South Claiborne Avenue. (via City of New Orleans)

A rendering and tenant list of the Magnolia Marketplace shopping complex planned for South Claiborne Avenue. (via City of New Orleans)

Improvements to utilities around the new Magnolia Marketplace on South Claiborne will be paid for by an additional 1-percent sales tax on purchases there that should last around 15 years, based on legislation being forwarded to the New Orleans City Council for approval Thursday. Continue reading »

Oct 072013
 

Owen Courreges

The Saenger Theater has finally reopened.  The opening gala took went off without a hitch over the weekend, with the facility receiving rave reviews.  Public and private dollars funded the whopping $52 million renovation that has been in the making for eight years, so expectations were running high.  Thankfully, the Saenger seems to have delivered.

Even cantankerous Times-Picayune theater critic (and sometimes theologian) Ted Mahne, whose scathing review of “Avenue-Q” is the stuff of legend, gushed that the Saenger was “magical.”  Oh, and the sense of civic pride? It was “palpable.” Continue reading »

Oct 072013
 

Fat Hen Grocery, photographed around the time of its opening in summer of 2011.  (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

Fat Hen Grocery, photographed around the time of its opening in summer of 2011. (Sabree Hill, UptownMessenger.com)

Fat Hen Grocery has closed after two years on St. Charles Avenue, and the new McClure’s Barbecue restaurant on Magazine Street is being sued by a neighboring condominium over the operation of its smoker, according to recent reports. Continue reading »