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Trial starts Monday in Catahoula in triple homicide
from The Concordia Sentinel
December 13, 2013 -

The trial of the man charged with the 2012 murders of three Larto residents is scheduled to begin Monday at the Catahoula Parish Courthouse in Harrisonburg.

Lee John Ponthieux Jr., age 43, 975 Moody Road, Larto, was indicted October 15, 2012, on three counts of first degree murder by a Catahoula Parish grand jury. The victims included 76-year-old Annie Bell Adams; her daughter, 51-year-old Edris Ilene Adams Ellard; and her son-in-law, 45-year-old John D. "Bozo" Ellard Jr.

Ponthieux faces a sentence of death or life in prison if convicted of first degree murder.

The Larto homicides occurred at the home of victim Annie Bell Adams in Larto.

Catahoula Parish Sheriff James Glen Kelly said following the murders that the female victims were stabbed in the neck, while the male victim was shot in the head. Both a shotgun and a blood-stained "large folding pocket knife" were recovered at the crime scene, he said.

Chief Deputy Toney Edwards testified in court last year that Ponthieux has a lengthy arrest record dating back to 1988 and had been booked in Pineville, Rapides Parish and Thibodeaux on a variety of charges, including battery on a juvenile, burglary of an inhabited dwelling, simple burglary, theft of a truck, simple criminal damage to property, indecent behavior with a juvenile, illegal use of a weapon and resisting an officer.

Ponthieux reportedly confessed to the murders.

The grand jury did not indict Debbie Adams, 58, who also was originally charged in the case. Adams had been incarcerated for five months prior to her release. She was the daughter of one victim and sister of another,
Although the grand jury did not indict Adams, District Attorney Brad Burget said the murder charges filed against her "do not go away."

"This remains an open investigation," Burget said previously. "The grand jury could have taken one of three actions -- returned a true bill and charge her with a crime, return a no true bill or pretermit the matter."

He said the grand jury pretermitted the matter.

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