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Judge and Deputy - Cousins - Clash On Prison Furlough

December 24, 1988

PLAQUEMINE, La. (AP) _ A man jailed on drug charges got to go home for Christmas after a judge threatened to jail his own cousin, the chief criminal deputy in the sheriff’s office, for refusing to allow the furlough.

″I’m obeying the rules, but I’m protesting them,″ Chief Criminal Deputy Ralph Stassi said after Carl Scioneaux, 27, of White Castle was released Friday on a court order from State District Judge Jack Marionneaux.

Marionneaux’s threat to send Stassi to jail is not the first public rift between the cousins. The judge, who ordered Stassi out of his court in 1985 after the chief deputy lambasted him during a hearing, said his cousin has a grudge against him.

The judge said Sheriff Freddie H. Pitre Sr. often lets prisoners out, and Scioneaux is a ″local boy″ who is unlikely to jump bail.

Stassi said Scioneaux, arrested Nov. 27 for possessing cocaine and marijuana with intent to distribute them, has been arrested repeatedly and didn’t merit a weekend pass.

The Clerk of Court’s Office said Scioneaux was convicted in 1984 of burglary and in 1986 of marijuana possession.

Scioneaux was being held on $60,000 bond when Marionneaux asked for his release on a weekend pass, Stassi said. The sheriff refused that request Friday morning, Stassi said.

But when Marionneaux called later, the judge threatened to jail his cousin, Stassi said.

Marionneaux said that, because it was Christmas, he changed the bond so Scioneaux could be released on his own recognizance.

″All of this goes back on him at 9 a.m. Monday. It’s just a weekend pass,″ the judge said.

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