New Orleans

Garey Forster: Is the new DA going to lead in fight against violent crime? | Opinion – New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana 2021-01-13 19:00:00 –

When governors and mayors begin and end their terms, there are some objective data points to look at to determine if they will succeed or succeed in performing their duties. Budgets and taxes come to mind.

It’s not so clear when the new district attorney takes over.

Currently, we are waiting to see how a new progressive district attorney organizes and operates his office in New Orleans, especially since the new DA has never filed a proceeding. Some of the intangible assets to consider are the cooperation and relationships between police and DA offices. In particular, as a councilor, Jason Williams resolved to cut the police budget this year by $ 11 million.

It will be interesting to see the relationship between Williams and its federal partners such as the FBI, DEA, ATF, the US Marshals Service, and the US Attorney General. Some of them are participating in the investigation of 11 tax evasion charges. Immediately go to federal trial. The case is being handled by another US lawyer’s office, not by a lawyer’s office in the New Orleans region.

It’s a shame that good partnerships with federal agencies will not continue into the future and everyone will work together to pool resources to combat violent crime in New Orleans.

The Metropolitan Crime Commission reports the most serious pending case that the new DA has inherited to the current group of prisoners in Orleans prison as of January 5.

Note that of the violent felony, 168 were murderers, 69 were rape / sex crimes, 135 were robbers, 161 were assaulted / assaulted, and 62 were attempted murders.

While MCC statistics are useful, they can be misleading as all DAs achieve conviction rates of 90% or higher. The real question is what percentage of the incidents police bring to them they accept.

For example, some offices cover only about half of the cases brought in by police (the national average of felony arrests for felony convictions is 54%), and the conviction rate is very high. Other offices, such as the retiring district attorney Leon Canizaro, tried to file as many proceedings as he felt could lead to conviction. He still maintained a conviction rate in the 90% territory.

Cannizzaro has broken down his workload by violent and non-violent criminals, with an emphasis on murderers and gang members. During his 12-year tenure, Cannizzaro eliminated 725 murderers from the streets of New Orleans (COVID-19 almost closed courts in 2020, which is actually more than 11 years. Masu).

The DA of the Orleans Parish has never achieved such a high number during that period. In addition, more than 100 violent street gang members have been eliminated by using Louisiana’s extortion law to form partnerships with federal law enforcement agencies such as the FBI and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Homicide is now up 68% in 2020 to 204 (121 in 2019), the highest number since 2007. Shooting has increased by 66% and Carjack has increased by 116%. That was before the city council and Mayor LaToya Cantrell cut police budgets by $ 11 million.

It’s up to Williams to keep the bad guys away from our neighborhood.

Former district attorney Eddie Jordan failed because he refused to accept a number of violent cases brought in by police. The criminal was released and re-arrested for committing the same type of crime, but DA’s office claimed that the quality of police work was inadequate. Regular meetings between the police and the DA to discuss their case should help improve the quality of police work and prevent history from repeating.

Williams cut police and DA budgets while in the council. I promise he will work closely with the police and wonder if he intends to hire staff to do that. If they don’t communicate often, then the problem begins.

Former district lawyer Harry Connick’s State Capitol Building Secretary for 15 years, I’ve seen good and bad times. I have also visited DA’s office several times and worked for two different mayors.

These are unusual times when a pandemic affects the behavior of everyone. It is up to our new DA to uphold the rule of law and protect all communities in order to make New Orleans a safer place to live, work and visit.

Send an email to GareyForster at

Gary Forster: Latoya Cantrell should rage at murderers, not Christians

Gary Forster is a former chairman of the Labor Industry Commission of the House of Representatives of Louisiana and a former Secretary of Labor of Louisiana. His column runs weekly. Email him at

Garey Forster: Is the new DA going to lead in fight against violent crime? | Opinion Source link Garey Forster: Is the new DA going to lead in fight against violent crime? | Opinion

Back to top button