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Former St. Martinville officer found guilty of excessive force, obstruction and conspiracy

Posted at 4:25 PM, Nov 05, 2018

The former St. Martinville Police Department officer was found guilty Monday on four felony counts, including a civil rights violation for using excessive force against an arrestee, and three counts of obstruction and conspiracy to cover up the incident, according to United States Attorney David C. Joseph.

After five days of trial, the jury convicted  35-year-old Codi Dodge of using excessive force on an arrestee, in violation of the arrestee’s Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable force. The jury also convicted Dodge of obstructing justice by falsifying records related to the unlawful use of force incident, and by conspiring with other members of the St. Martinville Police Department to cover up his actions.

“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 Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Gore. “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. “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. My office will hold them accountable.”