MARY MEAUX — It’s time to do the right thing with unsolved killings

Published 12:30 am Friday, May 12, 2023

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This week I had the chance to speak again with a woman still seeking closure in the killing of her son.

The last time I spoke to her it was 2017 and there were clues to the identity of the man who shot 29-year-old Eric Noel in the back three years prior.

When Port Arthur police made the name of a person of interest public in 2017, I assumed the next time I spoke with Lula Noel, it would be in relation to charges filed or a trial.

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As of today, the case remains open.

This week I was at an assignment and a familiar face came up to say hi. It was Trena Arceneaux, whose brother Abram Ford was shot to death in 2007.

I first met this family right after Ford’s death and in subsequent interviews and updates. The last one was in 2020 when I sat down with her and her parents. As of today, Ford’s killer has not been brought to justice.

Both of these families share a bond of wanting and needing closure in the deaths of their loved ones. I don’t pretend to know how they feel — their gut wrenching heartbreak. But I know from our conversations they share grief and pain, faith and hope.

That afternoon after speaking with Arceneaux it dawned on me that I had spoken with not one but two people this week who shared a sad bond of losing a loved one to violence in crimes that remain unsolved.

One thing that would make a difference is a solid lead in these cases — just one person to come forward. I also understand reasons why someone would not want to do so. Some are scared of retaliation; some are leery of police. I’d like to think I would be strong enough to come forward with information on a deadly crime, but in reality I know I would be terrified.

There is an easy way to come forward with information anonymously through Crime Stoppers of Southeast Texas. Tipsters can call 409-833-TIPS or download the P3 Tips app on a smart phone. Tips are anonymous and could be eligible for a cash reward.

There have been a number of cases solved by anonymous tips, and I’m sure these two families, and others impacted by violent crime, would appreciate it.

The cases

Abram Ford was 28 when he was found shot multiple times on Marshall Avenue on Oct. 18, 2007. His family believes he was killed in a different location and placed in his car. Family said even with multiple rounds fired, his car windows were not broken. They believe there are multiple suspects in his death.

Eric Noel was shot in the back on Feb. 14, 2014, his body found in the 800 block of 9th Street.

Police said there had been several altercations in the parking lot at nearby BJ’s Food Store on 7th Street, and at some point Noel walked away. Within minutes, shots were heard. When officers arrived, they found Noel down on the ground.

Call Crime Stoppers if you have any information on these cases — 833-TIPS (8477).

Mary Meaux is a news reporter at The Port Arthur News. She can be reached at