A Louisiana grand jury delivered a surprise yesterday by indicting a man not only for the murder of a missing college student, but also for an unsolved cold case killing from 1999.
The indictment of Brandon Scott Lavergne, 33, a registered sex offender, for the murder of University of Louisiana undergrad Mickey Shunick was expected. Police arrested him two weeks ago, though Shunick's body hasn't been found since she vanished in May.
Cops linked him to Shunick because he owns a truck that was seen trailing the 21-year-old as she rode her bicycle the night she disappeared. The Chevy pickup was found burned in Texas days later while Shunick's damaged bike turned up beneath a bridge.
The stunning development yesterday in a Lafayette Parish court was an apparent break in the 13-year-old investigation into the slaying of Lisa Pate. The 35-year-old woman was reported missing in June 1999 and then found buried beneath boards in a field in Church Point, Louisiana, according to the Associated Press.
PHOTOS of Mickey Shunick (story continues below):
However, authorities released little information yesterday connecting Lavergne to Pate's death, the Daily Advertiser reported.
Lavergne, 33, was labeled a sex offender after kidnapping and sexually assaulting an 18-year-old woman in 1999. He went to jail for eight years.