St. Martin

Oct 1, 2013 4:15 PM

Inmate accused of holding officer hostage, charged with kidnapping & rape

Deputies say a man who allegedly held an officer hostage at the St. Martin Parish Correctional Center is facing charges of Aggravated Kidnapping and Aggravated Rape.

According to the St. Martin Parish spokesperson, the officer was "assaulted" while being held captive.

The inmate has been identified as 43-year-old Melvin Celestine. Deputies say he suffered minor self-inflicted injuries prior to his surrender.

According to records, Celestine was in jail, after pleading guilty to a charge of Aggravated Burglary in January of 2012. He was sentenced to 15 years at hard labor.

The incident began Monday night at 7:45 p.m. KATC viewers were first to alert us, and despite many calls to every law enforcement agency in the area, we were told no information would be released. Nearly an hour after the situation was resolved, at 9:50 p.m., a spokesperson reported there had been a hostage situation in the laundry room facility that ended without injury to either party.

We're continuing to investigate this incident, as is the St. Martin Parish Sheriff's Office. We've asked several follow-up questions, specifically 'did the suspect have a weapon', 'were protocols followed by the officer/department', what is the policy in regards to alerting the public/media about hostage situations' and 'was the officer sexually assaulted'?

However, the press release states "the investigation remains ongoing and no additional information is available at this time".  



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