Joseph was booked into the St. Martin Parish Correctional Center without bond after authorities learned he wasn’t physically incapacitated as it was earlier supposed and in fact might have even been up and moving around Breaux Bridge.
Joseph allegedly tried to commit suicide by shooting himself after a hostage situation at a residence on La. 31 between Breaux Bridge and Cecilia. He lay in a coma in a Baton Rouge hospital for a time and then was transferred to Dixon Correctional Institute in Jackson.
He was released from that facility after running up a $17,000 medical bill and apparently causing some fiscal alarm in the halls of St. Martin Parish Government.
A judge agreed to release Joseph into the custody of his family pending arraignment after learning that the prisoner was heavily sedated and connected to a feeding tube.
He was put in jail after members of Helaire’s family members called to say Joseph had been seen around town, said Assistant District Attorney Chester Cedars, who was plainly miffed about the mixup.
“What was represented to me specifically and unequivocally was Freeman Joseph’s condition was such that he posed no danger to society — that he was incapacitated,” Cedars told reporters.
“If I can’t rely on law enforcement, who can I rely on?”
The St. Martin Sheriff’s Office said it was relaying the information it received about Joseph’s medical condition from Dixon.
Apparently Joseph is on a feeding tube but the tube must be used only a few times a day.
On Dec. 17, deputies were called to a hostage situation in 2700 block of Main Highway, La. 31, because Joseph had allegedly barricaded himself inside with his ex-girlfriend and her 9-year-old daughter. The hostage standoff ended without harm to anyone but Joseph, who reportedly shot himself in the neck.
Helaire’s body was found elsewhere shortly afterward, and investigators began piecing together evidence that the two men’s trails had crossed earlier that day.