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Four officers running to replace officer with violent past on the civil service board

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BATON ROUGE- Four police officers are running to replace a Baton Rouge police officer on the civil service board. That Officer, Robert Moruzzi, is also running. He has been elected multiple times but his service on the board has been called into question with his past history of brutality.

In 2014, he knocked Brett Percle's teeth out, and taxpayers had to pay $75,000. Together Baton Rouge called for his resignation from the board last month. Moruzzi was voted in by members of the Baton Rouge Police Union, and his term expires on July 26, 2020. Together Baton Rouge said his history of police brutality is deeply troubling considering our nation's current climate.

The board has five members, one appointed from the police department, the fire department, the municipal government, LSU and SU. Moruzzi is the appointee from the police department.

Moruzzi stated that, "The union has never backed a candidate on the civil service board. All classified employees get to vote on their representative, not just members of the union." 

The other officers who are running against Moruzzi are: Sherri Harris, Darryl Honore, Belford Johnson and Russell Williams.

"There have been some persons nominated whom we have discovered are of good character and good repute," Pastor Clee Lowe said.

Lowe said changing who sits on the board is the only way the community can be sure that bad actors aren't defended and allowed to return to their positions when they go before the board.

"We have many good fine officers in our Baton Rouge Police Department," Lowe said. "It is our great hope that they will select someone that will represent the best of the best from within that department to be on this most important board."

Others also want to see additional measures put into place to make sure that there is an oversight.

"All commissions in this parish should have a vetting process with qualifications and standards to make sure we are getting the best-qualified candidate," Edgar Cage with Together Baton Rouge said.

The election will be held on July 16 and 17. Moruzzi's term expires on July 26, 2020, if he is not re-elected.

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