UPDATE – Lavergne Checked Out of Jail Yesterday While Body Believed to Be Mickey Shunick’s Was Found
Update – 8/8/12 - Investigators are saying that they have sent the suspected remains of Mickey Shunick to a forensic lab at LSU. The Faces Lab at LSU is one that specializes in identifying human remains. Lafayette Police Corporal Paul Mouton says they are anxious to hear back from the forensic experts.
Meanwhile, authorities continue to say that credible information led them to the old public cemetery in Evangeline Parish. While they will not confirm or deny that a deal was made with Brandon Scott Lavergne, records show that he was checked out of jail for several hours yesterday. Corporal Mouton would not say if that was connected to finding the body.
8/7/12 – MAMOU, La. (KPEL) — Lafayette Police Corporal Paul Mouton says they have found the remains of a body that they believe is that of Mickey Shunick.
Investigators are at a small cemetery off of Highway 10 just outside of Mamou.
You can listen to KPEL Reporter Nathan Pike and Chris Reed of Hot 107.9 FM interview Corporal Mouton by clicking below:
Corporal Paul Mouton was asked the following questions:
What led police to the scene?
“The Lafayette Police Department received credible information as to the possible whereabouts of Mickey Shunick. The information was confirmed that we did locate a body that had been buried in this particular area. We are in the process of processing that scene and making confirmations that it indeed is Mickey Shunick.”
Can you confirm that a plea deal was arranged between Brandon Scott Lavergne, Mickey’s accused killer, and the Lafayette Parish District Attorney’s Office?
“I can’t confirm that information. I’m basing my information from investigators and what they told me. That is, in fact, that they received credible information and so far everything that that information provided has been confirmed. So far that reason we believe that we’re getting close to identifying that this is Mickey Shunick.”
Has anyone talked to the family?
“All along this investigation we speak with the family and have spoken with them on a regular basis. They are up-to-date as far as the progress of this investigation. Obviously, we tell them information that is close to that of the investigator and not information that we release to the media because this case still needs to go to trial and still has to go before a jury and it’s important that we maintain the integrity of the case.”
Are you confident that the body found is that of Mickey Shunick?
“I feel very confident that the information that we have received has pointed us in the direction of where Mickey is and that in fact we will hopefully be able to confirm tonight or by tomorrow that this is in fact Mickey.”
Shunick disappeared May 19. She was last seen on surveillance camera near the Lafayette City-Parish Consolidated Government building at the corner of St. Landry Street and University Ave. A white truck is seen driving behind her in the camera footage. Police say Brandon Scott Lavergne was driving that truck.
Shunick’s bike was discovered a week later underneath an Interstate 10 overpass in a swampy area of the Whiskey Bay. Police say the rear tire of the bike had damage consistent with being hit from behind.
After what appeared to be weeks of inactivity in the case, a tip from a concerned citizen led to the search of Lavergne’s trailer in St. Landry Parish, and he was arrested and charged with first degree murder and aggravated kidnapping.
Police say Lavergne drove the truck seen on surveillance video to San Jacinto, Texas, and burned it. He then reported the truck stolen and bought a new truck similar to the one he burned.
Court documents filed last week by the Lafayette Parish District Attorney’s Office indicate police had placed a tracking device on Lavergne’s truck. Police have said for weeks they can place Lavergne near the intersection of St. Landry Street and University Avenue as well as at the Whiskey Bay. They have not released how they know that for sure, though.
We will bring you the latest details as soon as they are released.
Nathan Pike and Brandon Comeaux contributed to this story.