AQUENTEYA Q. ROGERS
DARIOUS E. ROGERS
Appeal from the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court In and
for the Parish of Washington State of Louisiana Trial Court
No. 110, 811 The Honorable William J. "Rusty"
Knight, Judge Presiding
S. Cassidy Baton Rouge, Louisiana Attorney for
Plaintiff/Appellant, Aquenteya Q. Rogers
Darious Rogers Bogalusa, Louisiana In Proper Person/Appellee
BEFORE: HIGGINBOTHAM, PENZATO, AND LANIER, JJ.
Aquenteya Q. Rogers, appeals the portion of the trial
court's judgment casting her with half the costs of the
proceedings following denial of her petition for protection
from stalking or sexual assault against Appellee, Darious E.
Rogers. For the reasons that follow, we amend the trial
court's judgment to vacate that portion of the judgment
that assessed costs against Ms. Rogers.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
matter arises out of an incident that occurred on April 15,
2017, whereby Ms. Rogers claimed that she was sexually
assaulted by her second cousin, Darious Rogers, and that she
was subsequently stalked by him. Ms. Rogers filed a petition
for protection from stalking or sexual assault pursuant to
La. R.S. 46:2171 et seq. or La. R.S. 46:2181 et
seq. The Commissioner of the Twenty-Second Judicial
District Court determined that Ms. Rogers failed to prove the
allegations by a preponderance of the evidence. Ms. Rogers
then filed an exception to the Commissioner's ruling
denying her request for a protective order. The trial court
held a hearing on the exception on September 25, 2017,
whereby both parties presented testimony. The trial court
orally noted that even after the conclusion of the testimony,
it was uncertain as to what occurred on the night in
question. Therefore, the trial court upheld the
Commissioner's finding that no protective order was
appropriate. The trial court also noted that it did not find
Ms. Rogers's petition to be frivolous, but that it was
not well-founded. The trial court divided the costs equally
between the parties both in its oral reasons for judgment and
in its October 17, 2017 signed judgment.
Rogers appealed the October 17, 2017 judgment, which this
court dismissed finding that the judgment was defective and
not a final judgment for the purpose of an appeal because it
did not contain appropriate decretal language and did not
dismiss any claims or the petition. Rogers v.
Rogers, 2018-0239 (La.App. 1st Cir. 9/21/18), 2018 WL
4523930, *2. Subsequent to this court's dismissal of the
original appeal, the trial court signed another judgment
dated October 22, 2018, denying Ms. Rogers's petition for
protection, dismissing her petition with prejudice, and
casting both her and Darious Rogers equally with court costs.
It is from this judgment that Ms. Rogers appeals.
Rogers only assigns as error that the trial court incorrectly
cast her with half the court costs, even though the trial
court found that her petition was not frivolous. The trial
court in both oral reasons and in the October 22, 2018
judgment stated that it did not find the petition to be
frivolous. Appellate courts review domestic protective orders
for abuse of discretion. Rouyea v. Rouyea, 2000-2613
(La.App. 1st Cir. 3/28/01), 808 So.2d 558, 561.
Revised Statute 46:2136.1 provides:
A. All court costs, attorney fees, costs of enforcement and
modifications proceedings, costs of appeals, evaluation fees,
and expert witness fees incurred in maintaining or defending
any proceeding concerning domestic abuse assistance in
accordance with the provisions of this Part shall be paid by
the perpetrator of the domestic violence, including all costs
of medical and psychological care for the abused adult, or
for any of the children, necessitated by the domestic
B. However, if the court determines the petition was
frivolous, the court may order the nonprevailing party to pay
all court costs and reasonable ...