Former St. Martinville police officer sentenced to 9 years in prison

Posted at 4:57 PM, Feb 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-15 14:37:16-05
Codi Dodge / KATC

The former St. Martinville Police Department officer who was convicted in November of four felony counts, which include a civil rights violation for using excessive force against a suspect, was sentenced today to nine years in prison by a federal judge.

Codi Dodge, 35, was sentenced to 108 months in prison on one count of Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law, one count of Filing a False Report and one count of Tampering with a Victim Witness or Informant.

Dodge was also sentenced to serve 60 months in prison for one count of Conspiracy to Tamper with a Witness and Make False Reports.

U.S. Federal Judge Elizabeth Foote ruled that Dodge could serve his sentences concurrently and would have to report for three years of supervised release after his prison sentence has concluded.

“Illegal conduct by officers who abuse their power and violate the civil rights of the citizens they promise to serve harms the public trust and will not be tolerated,” said Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband in a prepared statement released after Dodge was sentenced. “The Department will continue to vigorously enforce our nation’s laws and hold officers who break the law accountable.”

“Law enforcement officers are sworn to uphold and defend the laws of our nation,” said U.S. Attorney David C. Joseph in a release about the sentencing. “When they themselves break those laws, they violate not just the rights of their victims, but also compromise the public’s trust in law enforcement. This case is a prime example of my commitment to hold accountable officers who threaten the mission of law enforcement by breaking the law.”

Dodge served as the Deputy Chief of Investigations at the SMPD in 2016 when he was charged with physically assaulting two individuals he had suspected of stealing from him, and then working to cover his tracks by filing false reports, destroying evidence and trying to convince his fellow officers to help with the obstruction efforts after the incident had been reported to the FBI.

Dodge was convicted on four of the seven counts in his indictment, but his seventh count, Destruction of Records, was dismissed, according to court records.