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New state government digging deeper into State Police wrongdoing first exposed by WBRZ

7 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, November 29 2023 Nov 29, 2023 November 29, 2023 5:55 PM November 29, 2023 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE- Attorney General elect Liz Murrill announced Wednesday that an in-depth review is being conducted at Louisiana State Police as the agency continues to be under a federal pattern and practice investigation by the Department of Justice.

Those comments were revealed at a news conference announcing the next Louisiana State Police Superintendent, Robert Hodges.

Murrill said Ed O'Callaghan from Washington D.C. would be spearheading the review. O'Callaghan is a longtime federal prosecutor and former top official at the Department of Justice. A quick search of his law firm's website shows his office specializes in crisis communications and the strategic response.

"I'm aware of an already existing United States Department of Justice pattern and practice inquiry that LSP has been engaging in for many months with the current administration," Murrill said. "Our office takes that very seriously. I'll be conducting our own deep dive of all the pertinent facts so we know best how to respond to this inquiry going forward."

Murrill said that she has a deep respect and appreciation for law enforcement who put their lives on the line everyday.

"They have my steadfast support," Murrill said. "I believe this support is best demonstrated by conducting a self assessment of LSP including policies, practices and operations and providing guidance and means to achieve lasting improvements."

The pattern and practice investigation at Louisiana State Police is probing whether troopers around Louisiana unfairly targeted minorities in the state. The investigation was announced in June of 2022, following multiple stories by the WBRZ Investigative Unit surrounding the death of Ronald Greene. Greene was a Black motorist in north Louisiana when he led State Police on a high speed chase in May of 2019. His family was told that he died from injuries in a crash. However, body camera video showed he was brutally beaten.

In the fallout following his death, leadership changes were made at State Police. A coverup ensued, and dogged reporting by WBRZ showed evidence was hidden.

WBRZ reached out to the Department of Justice to find out what the status of their inquiry is. When we hear back we'll include their response.

"We will work to ensure that Louisiana State Police is the finest law enforcement organization in this country," Murrill said.

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