BATON ROUGE, La. (WGNO) — On Thursday afternoon, Attorney General Jeff Landry issued the following statement over the ongoing concerns regarding the death of Ronald Greene and the jurisdiction in this criminal matter:
“I have heard the concerns raised over the death of Ronald Greene. His family has my condolences and prayers.
The event captured on video took place two years ago and the Louisiana State Police – which reports to the Governor – has had this evidence, or the ability to access this evidence, since that time.
It is important to note that the criminal matter can be broken down into investigation, state prosecution, and federal prosecution. Our office has no involvement in any of these as they are being handled by the Louisiana State Police, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Third Judicial District Attorney’s Office, and the United States Department of Justice.
It is also critical to note that the Constitution of the State of Louisiana does not give the Attorney General original jurisdiction in criminal cases or authority to take a prosecution from a district attorney without cause of recusal by the DA. This criminal matter has been ongoing for two years with the involvement of the local District Attorney, and there is no legal cause for recusal.
I will continue to closely monitor the situation; and I trust DA Belton and the Biden DOJ will follow the facts and seek justice.”
On Thursday morning, leaders of the National Urban League, Urban League of Louisiana and other civil rights and social justice organizations gathered to demand the immediate termination and arrest of all state troopers involved in the 2019 fatal assault of Ronald Greene and its criminal coverup.
Now brought to light, an attempted cover-up in the deadly 2019 arrest of Ronald Greene.
The ranking Louisiana State Police officer at the scene falsely told internal investigators that Greene was still a threat to flee after he was shackled, and he denied the existence of his own body camera video for nearly two years until it emerged just last month.
New state police documents obtained by The Associated Press show numerous inconsistencies between Lt. John Clary’s statements to detectives and the body camera footage he denied having.
They add to growing evidence of obfuscation in Greene’s death, which the white troopers initially blamed on a car crash at the end of a high-speed chase and is now the subject of a federal civil rights investigation.
The highly secretive case has drawn national attention since last week, when the AP began publishing graphic body camera videos that showed troopers repeatedly jolting Greene with stun guns, putting him in a chokehold, punching him and dragging him by his ankle shackles.
And like George Floyd’s death a year ago, it once again highlighted the importance of video as key evidence in police misconduct cases.