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West Monroe murder suspect carries lengthy criminal history

Ouachita Parish, La.-- - Nathan Pettit Jr. recently made headlines for a crime spree that turned deadly. 

He allegedly hijacked a car, lead police on a multi-parish chase then murdered a West Monroe woman.

After digging deep, we learned that this isn't Pettit's first rodeo in the world of hard crime.

His first offense, that is public record, happened in 1993. He was sentenced two years for simple burglary. 

From 1994- 1997 Pettit had multiple run-ins with the law. He faced time for multiple burglaries and felony theft charges. 

In 2010, he was arrested in Richland Parish and charged with attempted second degree murder, armed robbery and conspiracy.

He pled lesser charges, of aggravated second degree battery and was sentenced to eight years behind bars. Pettit got out of jail this past April. 

Yet, Pettit allegedly wasn't acting alone in this case. 

His alleged accomplice, Melissa Ann Moore, faced the same charges, but never served time. 

However, she was convicted of drug charges that got her placed behind bars. 

"The purpose of this reform was not to open the doors and just let people out early so we could find some savings," Deputy Assistant Secretary of Corrections Natalie LaBorde said. 

Moore was let out on the early-release program that LaBorde is talking about, despite having her fair share of run-ins with the law. 

She was arrested at least four times between March 2015 to July 2016 on possession of meth charges. 

"Your normal recidivism rates in the first year is about 15-percent so we appear to be tracking underneath that," LaBorde added.

Family members of the victims will likely not find comfort in these lower numbers.

In fact, the Louisiana Department of Corrections told us that 60 of the nearly 2,000 inmates who were let out early, are already back behind bars. 


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