Criminal Justice

Derek Chauvin sentenced to 22 1/2 years in prison for murder of George Floyd

BY: - June 28, 2021

Convicted in the murder of George Floyd, ex-Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison Friday, becoming the first white Minnesota police officer to serve prison time for a murder committed while on the job. The sentencing marks a significant milestone in the effort to get justice for Floyd, […]

Governor vetoes bill that would've allowed concealed guns without a permit

Louisiana governor vetoes bill to allow people to carry concealed guns without a permit

BY: and - June 25, 2021

Gov. John Bel Edwards vetoed legislation this week that would have allowed residents over the age of 21 to carry concealed guns without a permit and without training — a move that has heightened calls from Republican lawmakers for an unprecedented veto override session in July. “I am a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, […]

Louisiana Capitol Building

Louisiana lawmakers rejected proposal to deter euthanasia of dogs from dog fights

BY: - June 22, 2021

Louisiana lawmakers killed a bill during the legislative session that was intended to deter the euthanization of dogs seized at dog fights. Supporters of House Bill 231 pulled the proposal once it became clear it wouldn’t get through the Senate Agriculture, Aquaculture and Rural Development Committee. Veterinarian associations opposed the legislation, though they didn’t explain […]

marijuana

Louisiana Governor signs bill to eliminate jail, prison time for modest marijuana possession

BY: - June 15, 2021

Gov. John Bel Edwards signed a new law that eliminates jail and prison time for the possession of modest amounts of marijuana — something typically defined as “decriminalizing” the drug. It takes effect Aug. 1. “This is not a decision I took lightly,” Edwards said in a written statement Tuesday. “In addition to carefully reviewing […]

Gov. Edwards downplays cover-up allegations in Ronald Greene case

Several police reforms expected despite failure of qualified immunity bill

BY: - June 11, 2021

With the 2021 Regular Legislative Session finished, Louisiana might soon benefit from several police reform bills that lawmakers passed this year even though Republican Senators killed the most critical piece of legislation proposed by the police reform task force — a bill that would have limited qualified immunity. House Bill 609, sponsored by Rep. Edmond […]

Catholic Church

Louisiana Legislature allows for more child sex abuse lawsuits — including against the Catholic Church

BY: - June 10, 2021

The Catholic Church and other major institutions accused of mistreating children stand to lose a lot more money to lawsuits brought by victims of abuse under a bill unanimously approved by the Louisiana Legislature Thursday.  House Bill 492, sponsored by Rep. Jason Hughes, D-New Orleans, removes the time limit for civil lawsuits over child abuse. […]

Louisiana State Police tanked automated expungement meant to help thousands, lawmaker says

BY: - June 10, 2021

Louisiana lawmakers scuttled a bill last week that would have helped thousands of Louisiana residents wipe out criminal records that can prevent them from getting better-paying jobs. The Louisiana State Police and Louisiana Supreme Court raised last-minute objections to the proposal. The Louisiana Senate Finance Committee shelved House Bill 604 — which took two years […]

Louisiana Legislature slightly reduces pre-trial detention for misdemeanor offenses

BY: - June 8, 2021

The Louisiana Legislature voted Tuesday to reduce the number of days people can be held in jail without being charged with a misdemeanor from 45 days to 30 days. Civil rights advocates had hoped for a much more sweeping change to Louisiana’s pre-detention protocol. Gov. John Bel Edwards has to sign the legislation before it […]

House petition case: Governor asks court to stop GOP from interfering

Louisiana Supreme Court redistricting bill falls short in House

BY: - June 8, 2021

A redistricting bill that would add two Louisiana Supreme Court seats and allow lawmakers to redraw the entire district map failed to pass in the Louisiana House on Monday. Thirty Democrats, joined by one Republican and one independent, voted against the measure after GOP lawmakers struck from the bill a requirement to consider racial demographics […]

marijuana

Louisiana Legislature votes to decriminalize possession of modest amounts of marijuana

BY: - June 7, 2021

The Louisiana Legislature voted to decriminalize the possession of modest amounts of marijuana across the state, removing the possibility of facing jail or prison time for people caught with 14 grams or fewer of the drug. Gov. John Bel Edwards hasn’t said whether he will sign the legislation yet. If he vetoes the bill, it […]

COMMENTARY

Dying in jail is bad; dying without being found guilty is worse | Jarvis DeBerry

BY: - June 4, 2021

More than 14% of the 786 people who are known to have died behind bars in Louisiana between 2015 and 2019 hadn’t even gone to trial yet. Two of those who died before getting their day in court were juveniles.  To be sure, that doesn’t mean that most of the other deaths aren’t alarming; only […]

COMMENTARY

William Tate and Lamar Davis have some big messes to clean up | Tammy C. Barney

BY: - June 2, 2021

LSU and the Louisiana State Police, two prominent state institutions embroiled in separate scandals that stink of sexism and racism have something else in common: Black men have been hired to eliminate the stench. The roads toward repairing all that ails these institutions are riddled with potholes, detours and dead ends. The two new leaders […]