'Disheartened and dismayed:' Baton Rouge Union of Police blasts BRPD for placing deputy chief on leave
BATON ROUGE - The Baton Rouge Union of Police says a move to place a deputy chief on administrative leave was connected to a three-year-old lawsuit rather than a BRPD warehouse used for unofficial interrogations at the heart of an FBI probe.
Deputy Chief Troy Lawrence Sr. was placed on administrative leave on Wednesday morning. Lawrence—who's been with the department more than 25 years—was previously commander of the Street Crimes unit, formerly known as the BRAVE unit.
The BRPD Union alleges that the action taken against Deputy Chief Lawrence are related to an allegation from three years ago, and criticized the department for not publicly announcing the exact allegations against Lawrence.
Read the full statement here:
The recent action taken against Deputy Chief Troy Lawrence placing him on administrative leave has the membership of the Baton Rouge Union Of Police both disheartened and dismayed. Why, when faced with current allegations about the so-called “Brave Cave” and the Street Crimes Unit, has the administration chosen to take action on an allegation that is more than 3 years old? An allegation where evidence and witnesses may be hard to come by due to the time that has passed since this incident is alleged to have occurred… An allegation, that by it’s very nature, damages the reputation of an officer with more than 20 years of dedicated and meritorious service to BRPD and the citizens of Baton Rouge… And why are the details behind the charges so hard to come by?
This administration likes to use the term “transparency” as a touchstone for the way they choose to conduct themselves; if there were actual transparency, in this case, the charges would be made public, as would the evidence and those bringing it. And, there would be an explanation as to why this allegation took more than 3 years to come to light if the administration felt there was an actionable offense.
The Baton Rouge Union Of Police has always stood for a full and fair accounting of any incidents or allegations made against our fellow officers; we have also always called for a fair and complete investigation, where warranted, under the full light of day.
At this juncture, we can only see nebulous accusations that will only serve to damage the individual officer, and the reputation of the office that he held prior to being placed on administrative leave.
The Baton Rouge Police Department said Wednesday that Lawrence was put on leave due to a "Baton Rouge Police Administrative and Criminal Investigation."