Arrest made in cruelty to juvenile investigation

On July 10th, 2020, representatives of the Louisiana Department of Child and Family Services filed a complaint with RPSO in reference to allegations of child abuse that occurred in the Ball, LA area.  According to the complaint, on July 8th, an infant was taken to a local area hospital for treatment related to a variety of significant unexplained injuries.  Due to the extent of the injuries, the infant was stabilized and transported to a hospital in New Orleans for further treatment.  During the course of their investigation, D.C.F.S. took guardianship of the infant.  Detectives from the Tioga Substation were assigned the case and during their investigation, the infant’s father, Shane Austin Bennett, 22, was identified as a suspect.

On July 14th, Detectives executed a search warrant at Bennett’s residence, located on Amason Road in Ball.  Evidence at the scene further supported the allegations levied upon Bennett.  Detectives established sufficient probable cause and warrants were granted for Bennett’s arrest in reference two counts Domestic Abuse Batter Severe Bodily Injury and two counts Second Degree Cruelty to Juveniles.  Bennett, who was at his residence during the search, was taken into custody without incident and booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center.  Bennett remains in jail in lieu of posting a $70,000 bond.

Sheriff Mark Wood would like to let everyone know the infant victim in this case has since been released from the hospital.  The infant is in a safe environment and being cared for by a state approved foster family.  Sheriff Wood would also like to commend the deputies, detectives, state agencies, medical staff and all involved for their diligence and many hours put into this difficult investigation, as well as providing care for the victim.  “We are the protectors and the voice for our children.  As I have said many times before… the safety of our children is paramount and we will be vigilant in our enforcement.”