NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Mayor Latoya Cantrell says Judge Susie Morgan’s decision to keep the consent decree governing the New Orleans Police Department is disappointing, and she respectfully disagrees with it.
This comes after the mayor has made pushes to end the consent decree, saying it “handcuffs officers.”
“The evidence that I have is listening to the men and women who have made and taken that oath,” said Mayor Cantrell when asked what evidence she has of that.
The judge cites her reasoning for keeping the decree in place because several critical areas the department was once found in compliance with, have backslid. She says that’s because of a lack of resources, including personnel.
“We need to get done with this – it’s very expensive,” said Donovan Livarccari. He’s the attorney for the Fraternal Order of Police.
Currently, the city pays roughly $115,000 a month for federal monitors, but Livarccari questions how can the decree be fulfilled if that much money is being spent paying monitors rather than on the department.
He calls it a vicious circle.
“We are not in compliance with the consent decree because of the lack of manpower, the lack of equipment, and we are spending all our money on the consent decree and not on manpower and not on equipment, then how do we get out of that?” He asked, adding the focus should be on recruiting officers.
“If there are no policemen then the consent decree isn’t going to be doing a whole lot,” said the attorney.