BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – As the Baton Rouge Police Department (BRPD) continues to investigate a slew of allegations related to misconduct and criminal activities within its ranks, the Department is simultaneously assuring the public of its continued devotion to the safety and protection of area citizens.

A Tuesday news release from BRPD addressed the situation by making the following pledge to capital area residents, “We want the community to know that these few bad actors do NOT reflect the mass of the professional, hardworking and dedicated men and women of the Baton Rouge Police Department. As exhibited in the past, our department will hold those found to have violated policy and/or state law accountable.”

The pledge continued, “We will continue to demonstrate this by arresting officers when probable cause exist and by terminating those who violate applicable policy. We believe that wearing the badge is an honor and will work diligently to protect the integrity of those officers who uphold the mission of the Baton Rouge Police Department every day.”

The criminal and administrative investigations of officer wrongdoing that BRPD refers to in Tuesday’s news release are detailed below:

Theft of Firearms

The initial investigation began in April of this year and involved the theft of multiple firearms, Malfeasance and Injuring Public Records. The case concluded June 6, with the arrest of former BRPD officer, Benjamin Zeringue.

Unauthorized release of confidential and/or sensitive information

A second internal investigation was initiated after learning that a current BRPD officer may have released sensitive information related to an ongoing investigation. The officer was immediately placed on administrative leave, and a criminal investigation began. Once the investigations conclude, the appropriate actions will be taken in line with Louisiana law and BRPD policy.

Alleged police misconduct

In a separate case, a former BRPD officer is being investigated relative to two incidents of alleged police misconduct. As per procedure, that officer was placed on administrative leave, and the criminal and internal investigations began. The officer abruptly retired within days of learning of these investigations, but the cases remain ongoing. Any actions deemed appropriate will follow the conclusion of the investigations.

A second unauthorized release of confidential and/or sensitive information

This week, the department has launched a fourth investigation addressing another potential breach within the ranks.

In regards to this second information leak, BRPD says, “The leaking of secure information within the department goes directly against public trust, and the Baton Rouge Police Department takes all allegations that go against public trust seriously. So despite numerous attempts to interfere with recent investigations, we will continue to aggressively pursue the truth that the public deserves.”

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