Former fire chief arrested on sex charge
Berwick’s former fire chief was arrested Tuesday for 10 counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile.
Michael Touchet, 47, of Columbus Avenue in Bayou Vista, was charged at 5:13 p.m. on a warrant for 10 counts of indecent behavior with a 13-year-old Berwick girl.
After a joint investigation with the St. Mary Parish and St. Martin Parish sheriff’s offices and the Berwick Police Department, the warrant was issued. It stems from electronic conversations, over a period of approximately one month, with the juvenile, according to St. Mary Sheriff Mark Hebert.
Authorities have not released his relationship to the victim or how they met. The issue initially was reported to the BPD last week and was turned over to the Sheriff’s Department because of the city’s close ties with the suspect, according to BPD Chief James Richard.
Touchet was the town’s fire chief for about one year and was a member of the volunteer fire department since 1986. During the department’s elections in January, he was voted out of his position and the new chief officially was appointed during the town council’s January meeting. Current Fire Chief Allen “Noonie” Rink said Touchet currently is under a full suspension while the department awaits further information from police.
The matter remains under investigation by the sheriff’s department at this time.
Touchet was arrested at the Morgan City Sheriff’s Department Substation and booked into the parish jail where he remained this morning in lieu of a $250,000 bond.
Elsewhere, Jeremy J. Arclis, 32, of Live Oak Street in Patterson was arrested Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. for possession of cocaine, resisting an officer by flight and resisting an officer by force.
St. Mary Multi-jurisdictional Narcotics Task Force agents patrolling the Patterson area conducted an investigative stop on the corner of Cleveland and Live Oak streets.
Agents located cocaine in Arclis’ possession, at which time he fled on foot with the agents giving chase. After a short pursuit, Arclis was apprehended, and he began to fight with the agents, Hebert said.
Arclis was booked into the parish jail where he remained this morning with no bond set.
Jade Aucoin, 20, of Renwick Boulevard in Berwick was arrested Tuesday at 8 p.m. on a warrant for abuse of toxic vapors and possession of Concerta, an ADHD medication.
Aucoin turned himself in to the Morgan City sheriff’s office after learning of a warrant. He was booked into the parish jail where he remained this morning with no bond set.