Youngsville Mayor Ken Ritter issued a statement late Friday, aiming to explain in detail what happens next in the investigation of Chief of Police Rickey Boudreaux.
At a special meeting Thursday night, the City Council voted unanimously to hire an HR law firm to investigation the chief. To see that story, click here.
The investigation comes after a story from The Acadiana Advocate after a reporter obtained body cam footage from an incident involving City Council member Kayla Reaux and Boudreaux. The incident happened last fall. To see The Advocate's story and watch the footage for yourself, click here.
Reaux has since announced she will resign.
In Friday's release, Ritter says he's been getting a lot of questions about how the investigation will proceed.
"Given these multiple requests, I wanted to take this opportunity to provide an explanation as to the manner in which the investigation of Chief Boudreaux will be conducted. First and foremost, it must be made clear that no one with any affiliation with the City of Youngsville, including myself, will have any role in this investigation," the Mayor wrote. "The quality of the results on this inquiry hinge on the free flow of information between the investigators and police department employees. Anonymity for those providing information is critical to this process in order to ensure the maximum relevant information is captured by the investigators."
The council approved a plan to authorize the city attorney to obtain rate sheets and details from three law firms that specialize in human resources investigation, and present those to the council at the next regular meeting in April.
"Based on the recommendation by legal counsel, the City Council, at the next regularly scheduled meeting will be presented with the name of multiple law firms who customarily engage and practice in the areas of labor, human resources, and public entity law. The Council will select one of these firms to perform the investigation of Chief Boudreaux," Ritter's release states. "Our City Attorney has directed that the firms for consideration be located outside of the Acadiana region in an effort to provide confidence to the police employees and the citizens of Youngsville that this investigation will be a confidential, unbiased and a fair inquiry of the Chief’s conduct since taking office."
Once the council selects one of those firms, the investigation can begin.
"Subsequent to the Council’s selection of the law firm, only members of the selected firm will have access to the information secured through police employee interviews. Once the collection of information is completed, the city will receive the findings of the investigation. The Council will then need to decide if any of the findings in the report warrant additional investigation(s)," Ritter wrote.
Ritter said he's not going to talk about the investigation.
"My administration is committed to ensuring this process is done fairly and without regard to any outside or undue influence. As such, the offices of Youngsville city government are not in a position to receive calls related to this investigation," he wrote. "Please hold all calls and inquiries until a firm is selected by the members of the Youngsville City Council. Our citizens deserve my administration’s undivided attention to facilitate and manage the day-to-day governance of the city and the countless projects before us."
If you want to watch the hour-long meeting, which included comments from citizens, council members and Boudreaux, you can do so here.