CROWLEY, La. — Two high-ranking Crowley Police officers have claimed that they were punished for reporting criminal activity to the District Attorney.
KATC Investigates has obtained records of grievances made to the Crowley Municipal Police and Fire Civil Service Board against Crowley Police Chief Jimmy Broussard.
Broussard was indicted Wednesday on four counts of malfeasance in office, one count of obstruction of justice and one count of attempted first degree injuring of public records.
The District Attorney's office has not responded to requests for more information about what, exactly, Broussard is accused of doing.
However, when KATC Investigates requested records related to Broussard's arrest, we were provided with the same document we got in January when we asked for records related to an April 2020 excessive force case. That document stated that the District Attorney had called the Acadia Sheriff's Office to request an investigation of the Crowley Police Department.
The records we received Friday give a few more clues about the crimes of which Broussard is accused.
In the Crowley officers' grievances, they both say they told former District Attorney Keith Stutes about the excessive force incident and also about another incident at a local bar, and they believe that testimony - which was given under subpoena - resulted in transfers and other actions they feel is punishment.
The letters were sent to the board in November 2020. As we previously reported, the D.A. made a complaint on Sept. 17, 2020, to request an investigation into possible criminal misconduct within the Crowley Police Department after the April 2020 excessive force incident came to light.
Acadia Parish Sheriff's records show that Ashlee McElroy, 27, was booked on Jan. 18 with second-degree battery and malfeasance in connection with an incident involving a person in her custody.
According to the grievances, one CPD officer said he told the DA about "some possible crimes," including the excessive force incident. The other officer said she told the DA what she knew, which was that McElroy allegedly threw a handcuffed suspect into a locker and caused the suspect to have a seizure. That officer alleges the chief knew of this incident but failed to follow through on an internal investigation, meaning McElroy was never disciplined.
The officer also alleges that Broussard did not turn over the criminal case file to the DA regarding McElroy's actions, as he is required to do by law.
On Oct. 22, 2020, one officer gave a statement to the Acadia Parish Sheriff's Office along with evidence to support the statement.
The officer states that on Oct. 28, 2020, Broussard called a mandatory meeting of the entire police department, where he stated that he was not going anywhere unless "God or the Courts removed him."
Broussard also told officers at that meeting that they were not allowed to question any of his orders or ask questions about new orders that would go into effect on Nov. 2020.
The officer alleges that Broussard reassigned she and two other officers to other positions where they would have minimal duties after they had talked to the DA. The letter alleges that Broussard ended the meeting by stating that he was "the head motherf***er in charge."
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