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Mar 2, 2012 6:13 AM by AP

Lawmaker: National Guard should police New Orleans

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A New Orleans lawmaker wants to give the governor the authority to call in the Louisiana National Guard to help police the city, which has seen continued murder rates higher than in other large municipalities.

Rep. Austin Badon, a Democrat who is running for a New Orleans city council seat, is proposing to let the governor declare a state of emergency to activate the National Guard when the murder rate in a city of 200,000 people or more is 45 homicides per 100,000 residents or higher. New Orleans exceeded that rate in 2010 and 2011.

The governor would have discretion on whether to enlist the National Guard's help.

Lawmakers will consider the proposal in the legislative session that begins March 12.

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