BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The East Baton Rouge Metro Council met on Wednesday night where the ongoing “Brave Cave” investigation was discussed. Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul spoke at the meeting, taking aim at one council member.
Chief Paul said, “I’m sorry mayor-president, but I’m going to speak my heart on this one, ’cause let’s talk about processes. Fourteen police officers were terminated. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight resigned under investigation. And then there’s appeals and you know what you do? You strip my funding. Are you gonna pay the attorney all the money that I already owe them for the bad cops that the civil service board where we gonna be here tomorrow and none of y’all gonna be here, and y’all sitting here trying to deal off these people’s emotions and some of y’all the problem, Jen Racca. You sit there, defund, defund the police department’s budget from a legal standpoint, and then come here cause I don’t have legal representation and I gotta play lawyer to fight these bad actors. Let’s talk facts.
“Then you go and you appoint people to the Civil Service Board that have direct ties to the (police) union. There are five people on the Civil Service Board, what’s wrong with good, law-abiding citizens. You putting people on the Civil Service Board with direct ties to the union and wonder why they reverse the decisions that I make. I’ve been quiet, but I’m not going to be quiet no more.”
Broome also spoke at the meeting and stated that the department still has a lot of work to do when it comes to maintaining trust with the community.
On Wednesday, Deputy Chief Troy Lawrence Sr. was placed on administrative leave as the investigation into the “Brave Cave” remains ongoing.
A community advocate, Geno McLaughlin, said, “What you guys don’t realize is when I stepped out five minutes ago somebody else, I got a phone call from somebody else, somebody else telling me that they were taken to the Brave Cave. How many other people has this happened to?”
Councilman Cleve Dunn Jr. said, “You know we’re going to dig into this as well and make sure that the family is made whole and that they’re not left holding the bag because we’ve seen many instances where that has happened.”
Civil rights advocate Garry Chambers, who spoke about the “Brave Cave” earlier this month, was also present at the meeting.
Chambers said, “Whenever Black men and Black women are drawn into a warehouse and being stripped, their constitutional rights are being violated and it is a form of cruel and unusual punishment.”
The FBI is now investigating the “Brave Cave” and asking the public for their input.
A news conference from the police department is set for 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 29 to discuss updates in the administrative and criminal investigation.