Covering Louisiana

Nov 12, 2012 1:49 PM by AP

Sorrento police charge harassment

SORRENTO, La. (AP) - Three Sorrento police officers have threatened to file suit against the town and its Police Department, alleging harassment and retaliation by Police Chief Earl Theriot.

An attorney for the three officers - Catherine Gil, Tige Scott and Kermit Givens - tells The Advocate () he faxed a letter to town officials Saturday telling them the officers plan to appear at Tuesday's Town Council meeting to discuss the allegations.

The letter was sent to Mayor Wilson Longanecker Jr. and the five members of the Town Council.

Efforts to reach Longanecker and Theriot for comment were unsuccessful.

Henry L. Schoemaker III, the Baton Rouge attorney representing the officers, said in the letter that he will ask the council to go into executive session to discuss allegations of sexual and racial discrimination and retaliation by Theriot and others in the department.

He said that if the claims cannot be resolved at the meeting, he will move forward with a lawsuit.

The Town Council is scheduled to meet at 5 p.m. at the Sorrento Town Hall.

Councilman Randy Anny said he and other council members have been "trying to promote Sorrento in a positive way." He said he was disappointed to hear about more negative allegations against the Police Department.

Recently, the Police Department was the subject of a nearly two-month investigation by the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office into alleged criminal activity. Sheriff Jeff Wiley said he found no criminal activity and no charges were filed.

Anny said that council will look into the new allegations.

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