Lake Charles, LA –
On January 26, Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Vehicle Crimes Investigative Unit (VCIU) detectives were notified in reference to the theft of catalytic converters from two businesses, on Highway 90 East and Freds Road in Lake Charles.
During the initial investigation, detectives learned several converters, matching the type stolen from the business on Highway 90, had been recently sold at a local recycling center by Walter W. Nelson, 43, Lake Charles. During the investigation, while detectives were at the recycling center, they observed Nelson at the business, in a black truck.
During further investigation, detectives reviewed video surveillance of the catalytic converter theft from the business on Freds Road and observed the same truck Nelson was seen in earlier. Detectives were able to obtain further information on the truck and learned it was registered to Reginald M. Louis, 52, Lake Charles; who was previously arrested in September 2022 for catalytic converter theft. After reviewing further video surveillance from the thefts detectives were able to confirm Louis was the suspect seen on video stealing the catalytic converters.
The following day, detectives returned to the recycling center for further investigation and located Nelson and Louis inside. When detectives attempted to make contact with Louis he forcefully resisted detectives and fled the area; leading deputies on a short foot pursuit before being apprehended. Nelson also left the scene but was apprehended a short time later walking on Highway 108 in Sulphur.
They were both arrested and booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center. Nelson is charged with 3 counts of illegal possession of stolen things from $1,000 to $5,000. Judge Tony Fazzio set his bond at $30,000. Louis is charged with resisting a police officer with force or violence; simple burglary; 4 counts of theft from $1,000 to $5,000; simple criminal damage to property from $1,000 to $50,000; and simple criminal damage to property less than $1,000. Judge Tony Fazzio set his bond at $140,000. It was also discovered Nelson had an active warrant for possession of CDS II with intent to distribute.
CPSO Detective Tyler McKnight is the lead investigator on these cases.
An arrest is an indication that probable cause exists to believe the subject was involved in the offense alleged. A person is innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.