INVESTIGATIVE UNIT: State Police back out of investigation into Sheriff Captain
NEW ROADS- State Police suddenly backed out of an investigation into a Pointe Coupee Parish Sheriff's Captain accused of claiming to be at work while he was actually working extra duty.
The Investigative Unit showed found that, Adrian Slaughter, a captain over uniform patrol, claimed to be in two places at once. That's when Sheriff Bud Torres called in Louisiana State Police to handle the criminal side of the investigation, as his office deals with the administrative side.
What has traditionally been a routine call for assistance by Sheriff Bud Torres turned into anything but routine this week.
That's when State Police backed out of an investigation he asked them for help on. It's a first during his tenure as sheriff.
"This is the only situation in eight years that I can recall," Torres said.
Tonight, Slaugther's case is being investigated by the State Attorney General.
"I was called yesterday by State Police and told they would not be able to conduct the investigation because of Mardi Gras," Torres said.
President of the Metropolitan Crime Commission Rafael Goyeneche isn't buying it.
"That's an excuse, Mardi Gras is six days away from being over," Goyeneche said.
Instead, he says the entire State Police organization is under a negative cloud right now. This week, the Governor directed the state's auditor to conduct a full investigation into travel by State Police. At least four troopers are under the microscope after taking a side trip to Las Vegas, when the group was on their way to a conference in San Diego. Goyeneche says it would be highly inappropriate for State Police to investigate an organization, when they have the same issues currently going on.
"If they conduct an external investigation into the Pointe Coupee Sheriff's Office and find a violation, then that may also create precedent for their facts and circumstances," Goyeneche particular said. "They are compromised."
Tonight, State Police Colonel Mike Edmonson says he has been in close contact with Governor John Bel Edwards over what happened in his organization. Edmonson told WBRZ, he has the Governor's full confidence and doesn't see himself resigning over this matter.
"The governor told me, look at this incident," Edmonson said. "Find out why it happened and why they did the things they did. Secondly, if policies and procedure was violated, take appropriate action. If they need to be changed, change it. Don't let it happen again."
Goyeneche believes trust is a big problem for State Police right now, and recapturing it for the public is a must.
"You have a double standard," Goyeneche said. "You have certain people in the organization that are allowed to ignore the rules and receive benefits that rank and file cannot. It creates morale issues."
The Division of Administration will be looking into trips dating back to the previous administration. After the side trip was revealed, State Police leaders said troopers would be forced to return any extra money that was spent on the trip. The drive cost State Police thousands of dollars in overtime.