Lawmakers want to hold former State Police leader in contempt for not cooperating with Ronald Greene probe
BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers investigating the death of Ronald Greene—and the apparent cover-up at Louisiana State Police—plan to hold the former head of the agency in contempt for not handing over three journals he referenced during his testimony to those same legislators.
Former State Police Superintendent Kevin Reeves, who was in charge at the time of Greene's in-custody death in May 2019, made numerous allusions to those handwritten journals when he testified before the bi-partisan committee at the State Capitol in March.
Rep. Tanner Magee, the committee chair, told the Associated Press that efforts to get those journals into the hands of committee members had broken down and that the group of legislators would move “as soon as possible” to charge Reeves with contempt.
Reeves' lawyer challenged that characterization of the situation, saying he prepared copies of about a dozen journal entries but that Magee "got excited and took off" without those pages.
“Col. Reeves isn’t in contempt of anything,” attorney Lewis Unglesby told the Associated Press. “He has done nothing but be cooperative.”
Magee said he sat down at Unglesby's office Monday to discuss which portions of the journals were relevant to the legislative investigation. The lawyer was reportedly willing to show entries mentioning Greene by name but refused to show other pages.
The discussion reportedly fell apart over a June 17, 2020 entry where Reeves mentioned Governor John Bel Edwards by name and included notes oh how to handle body camera footage and police brutality in the future.
Magee said he argued the entry could be related to Greene's death but Unglesby described it as “just a random discussion on police brutality.” The lawmaker likened the few pages he did see to a "to-do list," making it difficult to discern what the notes meant.
“I think it’s premature to make any accusations,” Magee told AP. “But I think it’s important we get the documents to put it into its proper context."
Reeves stepped down at State Police in late 2020 amid an avalanche of controversies enveloping the agency, including the growing fallout from Greene's death.
When he spoke to the legislative committee about the deadly arrest in March, Reeves insisted there were no efforts to cover up Greene's beating at the hands of troopers. At the same time, Reeves also claimed he had little knowledge of the internal investigation into the matter.
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