Austin Rivault’s Family Speaks Out Against Fontenot’s Sentence
After Seth Fontenot was sentenced to 13 months in jail, the family of Austin Rivault released a statement condemning Judge Edward Rubin's decision.
"We are appalled at yesterday's ruling and the message Judge (Edward) Rubin sent to this community: that 18 year olds will not be held responsible for their actions, even when those actions include murder. Judge Rubin showed a clear disregard for the lives of Seth Fontenot’s victims, who harmed or violated no one that night. Justice was denied to our families."
Rubin sentencing Fontenot to three years in prison, but suspending all but 13 months, is a move that Assistant District Attorney has said is illegal. He filed an appeal today to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Lake Charles claiming state law dictates manslaughter sentences cannot be suspended.
Fontenot has been booked in St. Martin Parish after being tranferred from the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center.
Fontenot avoided a first-degree murder charge for Rivault's death when a jury convicted him of the lesser charge of manslaughter.
Fontenot shot a pistol three times at a truck carrying Rivault and two other 15-year-olds, Cole Kelley and William Bellamy, hitting all three teens. Fontenot, never denying he shot at the victims' vehicle, said he was firing because he thought they were stealing from his truck.