Men Moved Entire House, Left 700 Without Power Before Dumping It: Police

Two men in Louisiana are currently behind bars after allegedly moving a house—literally—without proper permits.

Tony Domingue, 46, and Nico Comeaux, 32, were arrested Sunday in Loreauville, a village in Iberia Parish. They were each charged with violation of parish ordinance, simple obstruction of highway commerce, and criminal damage to property.

According to state law, simple obstruction of highway commerce refers to "the intentional or criminally negligent placing of anything or performance of any act on any railway, railroad, navigable waterway, road, highway, thoroughfare, or runway of an airport, which will render movement thereon more difficult."

It is punishable by a fine of no more than $200, imprisonment for no longer than six months, or both.

Iberia Parish Suspects
Tony Domingue, 46, left, and Nico Comeaux, 32, were arrested Sunday and charged with multiple crimes related to allegedly moving a house across town and causing unknown amounts of damage. Police said the pair caused more than 700 electric customers to lose power for several hours. Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office

Katherine Breaux, a spokesperson for the Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office, told Newsweek that sheriffs received "several calls" on Sunday morning regarding a home between 1,500 and 1,700 square feet that was later discovered to belong to Domingue.

At about 3:30 a.m. deputies reportedly responded to Berard Road, in Loreauville, regarding the illegal transport of the home. When deputies arrived they found an abandoned truck, trailer and house blocking the road's 400 block.

Domingue and Comeaux allegedly transported the home down Coteau Holmes Road, in the process hitting and damaging multiple mailboxes, road signs and trees. The pair also allegedly hit power lines and poles that led to nearly 700 CLECO electric service customers to be without power for several hours.

In a Facebook post, the sheriff's office said "this has been an ongoing situation."

Breaux said the Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office received confirmation from the Iberia Parish Government Permit Office that Domingue never applied for a permit to move the home.

"Our office was told that Mr. Domingue purchased the house in the later part of
2021," she said. "From the location where the house was situated when he purchased it, to where his property is located, is approximately 2-3 miles. He went through a sugarcane field for a portion of the distance, then on to a parish road, a state highway and back onto a parish road."

He actually attempted to reportedly move the home in the early hours of May 12, she added, which is when the house got stuck in the sugarcane field for over a week. That was when officials told him to apply for a permit first.

On Sunday a towing company and CLECO moved the house approximately 1/4-mile or 1/2-mile to Domingue's property. He and Comeaux were arrested at approximately 2:30 p.m.

Regarding the extent of damage, Breaux said the sheriff's office is waiting to receive copies of invoices from CLECO and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development.

Both suspects were booked at Iberia Parish Jail and bond was set at $125,000 each. Additional charges are pending.

In February a similar incident occurred in Michigan. An entire 12-by-28-foot cabin in Cold Springs Township was reported stolen and likely hauled away on a trailer.