2005-07-22 21:59:26 UTC
7/22/2005, 3:55 p.m. CT
The Associated Press
WINNFIELD, La. (AP) — Winn Parish District Attorney Terry Reeves, who
was accused of using at least $46,000 in public money for personal trips
and dinners, apparently killed himself with a single bullet to the
chest, the coroner said Friday.
A preliminary investigation indicated that Reeves, last seen Thursday
morning, shot himself with a .38-caliber handgun between 5:30 p.m. and 9
p.m. Thursday, Dr. Randolph Williams said.
He said Reeves may have been sitting on a metal chair on the back porch
of an empty house which he owned before falling to the concrete floor,
where his body was found Friday.
The bullet went into the left front chest and out the back. It probably
did not hit Reeves' heart, the coroner said.
Reeves did not leave a note, but "the history, of course, is compatible
with the situation. He'd been under a good deal of scrutiny and
investigation by various agencies recently," Williams said.
Those agencies included the Louisiana Attorney General's Office,
spokeswoman Kris Wartelle said. She would not say whether an indictment
had been handed up or would be requested.
In April, the state Legislative Auditor's Office released a report
saying Reeves' office had failed to keep proper records of $169,000 in
expenses for conferences and seminars. It said that, of those records it
had reviewed, at least $49,000 apparently was spent on trips that were
either personal or unnecessary.
The Police Jury in Winn Parish, which has about 17,000 residents, gave
him a budget of $275,000 for the year. He had spent it by June, and had
a $400,000 deficit from 2004.
Reeves sued, saying the budget was $500,000 and the parish was required
to pay. Friday was the deadline for his attorney, Bobby Culpepper of
Jonesboro, to file a post-trial memorandum that would take the place of
closing arguments in the trial, held without a jury.
Reeves, 59, was divorced. He is survived by his mother and his adult
children, Williams said.
The coroner said the full autopsy was under way Friday. He expected to
have a preliminary report Monday, with more information, such as the
toxicology report, later.