Gov. Edwards, AG Jeff Landry release statements on Ronald Greene case

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Ronald Greene smiles in an undated photo provided by his family. A Louisiana State Police trooper has been suspended without pay for kicking and dragging Greene, a handcuffed Black man whose in-custody death remains unexplained and the subject of a federal civil rights investigation. Body camera footage shows Master Trooper Kory York dragging Greene “on his stomach by the leg shackles” following a violent arrest and high-speed pursuit, according to internal State Police records obtained by The Associated Press. (Courtesy of the Greene family via AP

BATON ROUGE, La (KLFY) — Since the release of State Trooper bodycam footage in the fatal arrest of Ronald Greene in 2019, public concern has continued to grow and intensify.

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 termination and arrest of all state troopers involved in the 2019 fatal assault of Ronald Greene and its criminal coverup.

Gov. Edwards and Attorney General Jeff Landry both released statements today.

Gov. Edwards met with the mother of Ronald Greene today to discuss his case and hear her concerns. This is the second meeting Edwards has had with the Greene family since last October.

His statement is as follows:

What happened was tragic, and I cannot imagine the immense pain of losing a child in such a terrible way. Nothing can make up for the disturbing treatment he received at the hands of some state troopers. I pledged to Ms. Mona Hardin that Louisiana State Police is cooperating fully with the Union Parish District Attorney and the United States Department of Justice in their investigations and that under the leadership of a new state police superintendent, change has already started at the agency. 

I expect every trooper who wears a Louisiana State Police badge to act professionally under every circumstance, to seek to de-escalate violent or tense situations and to treat all people they encounter respectfully and justly. Law enforcement officers must hold themselves to the highest standards at all times. I certainly do. The officers seen on the body cam footage of Mr. Greene’s arrest do not represent what we aspire to in the state of Louisiana. Their actions were deeply unprofessional and incredibly disturbing. I am disappointed in them and in any officer who stood by and did not intervene during the arrest.

I am praying that ongoing investigations, which the state is cooperating with, will bring Mr. Greene’s family a measure of peace and justice.

Attorney General Jeff Landry released the following statement:

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 the 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.

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