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DISTRICT DEFENDER ADVISORY: POLICE PLAINTIFFS OPEN TO QUESTION In a June 19 Newsletter, 15th JD District Defender G. Paul Marx said of a Civil Suit filed by several police officers: "BOLO for a group of Lafayette City Police: if you have any of these officers on a case, which is unlikely, take an extra look at the facts: KANE MARCEAUX; SCOTT POIENCOT; NORBERT MYERS; GABE THOMPSON; NOVEY STELLY;ULETOMP P. HEWITT, REGINA BRISCOE, AND ALEETA M. HARDING. Having reviewed their petition in federal court, it seems a petty and selfish group who would suggest that their is any legal liability on the "facts" plead in the case. Essentially they would have liability imposed on public officials based on rumors and because in their opinion sanctions were not fairly imposed. Of course, the Civil Service Board, which one of them sits on as the PD employee representative, is the proper place for that, but it seems a public smear is more the point in their claims. As we know, "fact pleading" means just that: you tell the court the facts and those support your ultimate claim. Unfortunately, the petition here is more like "opinion pleading", which usually doesn't work, and shouldn't. After being booted out of state court on a request for injunction (Judge Earles), they proceeded to a Federal Complaint against the City and its Police Chief, Mayor and other officials in and out of the Police Department. Aside from a conclusory statement about things being "rotten to the core", the petition in federal court (Civil Action 6:12 cv 01532 filed 6/5/12) reads like a bad high school yearbook. Thirty eight pages, 271 paragraphs setting out rumors and whining about the Chief of Police not sanctioning himself or other officers but no facts supporting claims for damages or violation of civil rights, much less the constitution of the state or United States. The fate of this complaint is likely going to be the equivalent of a judicial taser: right out of the courthouse! Should you find one of these plaintiffs in one of your cases, take a look at the outlandish petition and you may find fodder for impeachment of these guys as witnesses! KANE MARCEAUX et al v LAFAYETTE PARISH CONSOLIDATED GOVERNMENT 6:12-cv-01532; US District Court W.D. La.) I remember Jim Craft as a hard working detective back in 1980 when I tried many cases with the PD office as a contractor. He has made improvements in the department and surely has challenges remaining. He has been open and cooperative with us administratively, and I have no doubt about his effort to have LPD as a most professional department. In the last few years I have had the opportunity to meet officers at accidents and at least one call in my neighborhood: professional, friendly, and efficient. The assertions about the core of the Lafayette Police are specious and unworthy of legal pleadings: the "facts" asserted are laughable. As a citizen with some knowledge of the role our Criminal Justice System gives professional law enforcement, I'm disappointed in reading the "law suit" to find it's so weak as to be funny, if it weren't so important to Lafayette" The case has garnered some publicity, and Marx commented after review of the actual petition , which is the basis for his opinion.

NEW JERSEY SUPREME COURT LIMITS EYEWITNESS EVIDENCE - The New Jersey Supreme Court holds in a 134 page decision that Eyewitness Evidence is of limited trustworthiness and should be subject to limits and restrictions. The Chief Justice writes that almost every study indicates problems with influence and error pose serious problems for the Criminal Justice System. The court sets out discovery and notice rules and direction for New Jersey courts. 8/25/11 READ THE CASE

NEW ORLEANS PUBLIC DEFENDER SUIT HEARD IN FEDERAL COURT - A New Orleans criminal defense attorney says the rough stuff involved in bailiffs tossing him from a courtroom should be compensated for in civil damages. The case LAFAYETTE PUBLIC DEFENDER WINS NOT GUILTY VERDICT Patrick George of Lafayette was acquitted in a nightclub stabbing at the former Plaza Lounge on Johnston Street in Lafayette. A jury took about an hour to decline conviction on two counts of aggravated battery. Felony defender Tommy Alonzo told the Lafayette Advertiser "the system worked" in the case. George was booked on three counts of aggravated battery but Alonzo presented self defense in the case, showing that the victims may have brought the knife into the club and George acted in self defense. 8/2011 FEDERAL CHARGES STICK AS N.O. POLICE CONVICTED IN DANSIGER SHOOTINGS They claimed civilians had been shooting at them, but a jury in Federal Court decided several police officers had falsified evidence, lied about witnesses and planted guns to create a story about the fatal shooting of unarmed citizens during the Katrina aftermath. 8/2011

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falsified evidence, lied about witnesses and planted guns to create a story about the fatal shooting of unarmed citizens during the Katrina aftermath. 8/2011 CROWLEY SHOOTER SENTENCED - A Crowley woman was sentenced for wounding her husband in a domestic violence incident, and faces a mixed hard labor/ probation type penalty in the case. 3/29/11 IBERIA INMATE JUMPS FOR FREEDOM - An Iberia Parish inmate jumped from a patrol car on the interstate but came up short of the freedom line. 3/29/11 PSYCHOLOGIST/COUNSELOR PLEADS GUILTY IN SCHOOL SEX SCANDAL - A counselor admitted seducing a student by Email and entered a Guilty Plea in Federal Court, expecting a sentence of 10 to LIFE. 3/29/11

NEWS in Court | 15th Judicial District Public Defenders Office

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