In termination letter to whistleblower, State Police says it's worried about 'destroyed public respect' amid WBRZ reports showing agency's cover-up of man's death
BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana State Police was so frustrated its cover up of the death of Ronald Greene was leaked to WBRZ and Chief Investigator Chris Nakamoto, it spent the last few months doing whatever it could to force the whistleblower who blew the lid off the situation off the force forever.
Carl Cavalier, a state trooper who received and shared copies of investigative notes showing Ronald Greene was killed in a bloody altercation with Monroe-area State Police troopers, was formally fired Monday.
Cavalier was warned he would be fired in October and the time period to appeal ended Monday. The termination letter outlined for the first time how State Police tracked publicity in the months following the bombshell interview showing the behind-the-scenes process of how top agency bosses spun Ronald Greene's death in police custody.
WBRZ first reported on the investigative notes of Albert Paxton in June. After the notes were broadcast on WBRZ News broadcasts and featured on WBRZ.com, Paxton retired from the department. Paxton told state lawmakers he was facing pressure for writing extensive notes, outlining the State Police cover up of Greene’s death.
Greene is heard on troopers’ body cameras exclaiming “I’m sorry” and “I’m scared” and video later showed Greene alive after the crash and is seen being accosted by troopers. In a leaked audio recording, one trooper is heard saying “I beat the ever-living f*** out of him.”
In a termination letter effective January 31, State Police Col. Lamar Davis wrote to Cavalier the leaked documents and ensuing media scrutiny of the situation was “reckless” and “destroyed public respect… and confidence in the Office of State Police.”
The termination letter outlines a handful of tracked emails and letters Cavalier’s bosses sent to him amid its termination proceedings.
The agency assigned an investigator to handle its case against Cavalier who tracked interviews Cavalier did with reporters in July and August in the wake of WBRZ’s initial report on the cover up.
The agency was annoyed Cavalier was critical of the investigation into Greene’s death – writing “your public criticism” was thoughtless.
“By providing these notes to WBRZ, you disseminated confidential information,” breaking various state police policies.
Also Monday, a top Louisiana lawmakers called for an investigation into whether Governor John Bel Edwards helped cover up Ronald Greene's death in Louisiana State Police custody. A recent report from the Associated Press suggested Governor Edwards received a text from then-LSP Superintendent Kevin Reeves hours after Greene's death saying the man died after a "violent, lengthy struggle" with troopers. That text conflicted with what the agency later said to Greene's family, who were told he died in a car crash
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