Neighbor says she tipped off police about escaped juvenile’s whereabouts
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A woman living in Algiers says she called the police when she noticed an escaped juvenile detainee showed up in her neighborhood after fleeing custody.
The woman, who goes by the name Hattie, says Curtis Tassin, who evaded custody while en route to a court hearing in New Orleans, came to visit her grandson.
“I told them his mother dropped him off early that morning when he broke out of jail,” she said. “My grandson was feeding him in the backyard and they found food back there.”
Thursday night, she says dozens of officers forced their way into her home, setting off smoke bombs, and rifling through her belongings.
“They tore up everything, smoke bombs, and everything in my house, and I don’t think it’s right,” she said.
Authorities say Tassin had escaped three times from juvenile facilities, was involved in an armed robbery, and a stolen truck incident that ended in a crash.
“This gentleman has a bad track record as an escape artist and he has a pending arm robbery charge,” said State Senator Patrick Connick (R-Marrero).
Residents in the neighborhood near the Juvenile Justice Center, where Tassin escaped on Wednesday, say they had no notification he was on the loose.
“It’s dangerous when you come outdoors or just go to your car, someone’s not doing their job,” said a woman who lives near the jail.
Tassin’s third escape raises questions about juvenile justice procedures.
“The staff needs to be brought in and questioned about what they did right and what they did wrong,” said Connick.
Senator Connick says the public needs to know when dangerous offenders are on the loose near their homes.
“In this case, they failed, and they have to find a way to fix it,” Connick said.
Tassin has now been sent to a juvenile facility set up at the Angola penitentiary.
Fox 8 has put in a request for surveillance video taken of Tassin’s escape. The city has denied that request.
We have also asked for an interview with the state office of juvenile justice about their investigation into the escape, but have not heard back.
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