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HSCA Interview with Joseph Oster 1/27/78
Nara Record Number 180-10080-10203
Jules Ricco Kimble and his brother, Clayton Kimble, might have
been known to Brownlee and Waytt [sic]. These two men are suspects
in the murder of a Louisiana man, Mr. James Leslie, who was murdered
after opposing teamster business. [...]
New Orleans Times-Picayune April 20, 1977 S1-P1
D'Artois Arrested after 8-Hour Seige
Shreveport, La. (AP) - Police sized former city public safety
commissioner George D'Artois in his home Tuesday [19th] and snatched
away his pistol, ending a long and patient siege.
He had holed up for eight hours armed with a .357 magnum revolver,
refusing to face a charge that he hired gunmen to kill Jim Leslie,
an old friend turned foe.
Within an hour, the prisoner was en route to Baton Rouge. He arrived
in a police car with lights flashing and sirens screaming. He was
booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Jail, where officers said he
would be held overnight.
In addition to D'Artois, Donald Gardner, 39, also of Shreveport, was
arrested on a first degree murder charge in the Leslie case. He was
arrested at his home Tuesday and led off in handcuffs.
"I am definitely innocent," he told reporters.
Police arrived with a warrant from East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff
Al Amiss charging D'Artois with first degree murder in the shotgun
killing of Leslie, who was cut down in the parking lot behind a
Baton Rouge hotel last July 9.
A spokesman for Sheriff Amiss described Gardner as the "key man
between D'Artois and the people who ultimately killed Leslie."
Leslie was an advertising and public relations executive. D'Artois'
troubles began when Leslie refused to accept a city check as payment
for private public relations work, and the dispute blew up into a
grand jury investigation.
The probe wound up with the commissioner charged with pocketing
$30,000 which he had listed as paid to stool-pigeons for police
information, threatening witnesses against him, and malfeaseance in
Sheriff Amiss said Leslie was killed because of his grand jury
testimony. A spokesman for Amiss said D'Artois paid Gardner and
[Russell] Griffith $30,000 to do the killing.
Leslie was killed a few hours after the legislature passed a
"right-to-work" law he had handled advertising for, but Amiss said
there apparently was no connnection.
In the court-filed applications for the warrant, East Baton Rouge
deputies quoted two Baton Rouge men, Clayton Kimble and Steve
Simoneaux, who said the Leslie killing happened like this:
- Gardner and Russell C. Griffith, 34, a Shreveport man who later
took a doublebarrel shotgun blast in the face, tried to get them to
kill Leslie or find somebody who would.
- Kimble said Gardner gave him $5,000 to find a killer, that he
failed, gave back the money, and Griffith and Gardner then said they
would do the job themselves.
- After that, Griffith and Gardner, using a CB radio for
communications, set a trap at the hotel. Gardner parked in the parking
lot until Leslie's car turned in. Gardner then pulled out, opening a
parking space for Leslie, right beside a fence where Griffith waited
with a shotgun.
Griffith was killed on a rural road in Concordia Parish in a remote
area near the Old River Control Structure, about 30 miles south of
Vidalia, last Oct. 16.
After his arrest here, Gardner was taken to Vidalia, where Sheriff
Fred Schiele booked him on the additional charge of murder in the
death of Griffith.
Schiele also booked Kenneth Brouillette of Simmesport, La., on a
charge of murdering Griffith. Sheriff's Maj. J.M. Bannister of Baton
Rouge said Gardner was accused of paying Brouillette $3,000 to kill
Griffith because Griffith had tried to shake him down.
New Orleans Times-Picayune May 10, 1977 S1-P2
Asked Me to Kill Leslie - Templin
Baton Rouge, La. - [...]
The hearing is being held to determine if the two men [D'Artois and
Gardner] should be bound over to a grand jury.
First to take the stand Monday [9th] was Clay Kimble, originally
from the Simmesport area.
Kimble, on whose statements the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's office
built much of its case against D'Artois and Gardner, took the Fifth
Amendment when questioned by Dist. Atty. Ossie Brown.
Following suit were Steve Simoneaux, a native of Galliano, and
Jules Ron Kimble, the first witness' brother. Clay Kimble and Simoneaux
have lived more recently in Baton Rouge.
Gardner and Kenneth Brouillette, Simmesport, have been charged with
the Oct. 16 murder of Russell "Rusty" Griffith, a Shreveport man
arrested in connection with interstate transportation of heavy
New Orleans Times-Picayune May 11, 1977 S1-P1
D'Artois is Cleared.
Baton Rouge, La. - [...]
Dist. Judge Frank Foil dismissed the charge against the former
Shreveport commissioner of public safety and Donald Gardner at the
conclusion of a two-day hearing [...].
Gardner still faces murder charges in Concordia Parish in
connection with the death of Russell "Rusty" Griffith."
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