Suspect arrested in connection to Calcasieu homicide was involved in 2018 attempted armed robbery in Alexandria
DOC: Autoria Lachney being held in Calcasieu Parish jail pending revocation of her current parole
WESTLAKE, La. (KALB) - The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office has arrested two people in connection to a Feb. 1, 2023, homicide in Westlake. One of the suspects arrested, Autoria ‘Tori’ Lachney, has connections to a Rapides Parish case and was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2019. Her re-arrest has some questioning how she was released already.
On Feb. 1, 2023, around midnight, Calcasieu Parish deputies were dispatched to a home off of Westwood Road in Westlake, according to our sister station KPLC. Residents said they heard gunfire. When deputies got to the scene, they found Damarcus Ardoin, 25, dead inside.
Two days later, warrants were issued for Kevin Williams, Jr., 23, of Eunice, Justin Ned, 22, of Dequincy, and Autoria ‘Tori’ Lachney, 22, of Lake Charles.
Williams was wanted for second-degree murder, Ned was wanted for principal to second-degree murder and Lachney was wanted for accessory after the fact to second-degree murder.
On Monday, Feb. 6, 2023, detectives found Williams and Lachney at a home in Lake Charles. They were arrested. Ned is still wanted.
“Based on the information we have so far, we feel that it was drug-related,” said Chief Deputy Stitch Guillory with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office. “Of course, we’re continuing our investigation. As we go along, we develop more and more information, so, we’ll see where this evidence takes us.”
If Lachney’s name sounds familiar, that is because she was sentenced to serve 15 years in prison by Rapides Parish Judge Chris Hazel back in April 2019 for her involvement in an April 16, 2018, attempted armed robbery at a home in Tennyson Oaks in Alexandria.
In that case, according to the Alexandria Police Department, two male suspects entered the home and attempted to tie up the victim. A struggle ensued and the victim was shot in the hand. Lachney was arrested in connection with that case.
She pleaded “guilty as charged” to conspiracy to commit armed robbery and conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary on March 25, 2019. On April 2, 2019, she was sentenced to 15 years on each charge to run concurrent.
The sentence was to be served without the benefits of probation, parole or suspension of sentence. Lachney’s charges were not considered “crimes of violence” under Louisiana law.
So, if Lachney was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2019, why was she out already? News Channel 5 reached out to the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections to get answers.
Ken Pastorick, the communications director at the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections, said Lachney received 351 days of credit for time served. That is the time she was held in pre-trial detention before her case was adjudicated. That is standard in every case.
Since her crimes were considered non-violent offenses, Lachney had to serve 35% of the sentence in prison. She could also earn up to 360 days of CTRP time, which is rehabilitative programming, to shave off her sentence. We are told Lachney received 330 days.
When all was said and done, she was released on August 30, 2022.
Pastorick said Lachney was on what is known as good time parole at her release. This new arrest puts that in jeopardy. That means she could be revoked and sent back to prison to complete the sentence. We are told her full term date on these sentences is April 15, 2033.
A date for a potential hearing in Rapides Parish on the matter has not been set yet.
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