Scathing Report Slams Top NOPD Official in Post-Katrina Police Shooting

August 25, 2011

Back in July, Marlon Defillo, the New Orleans Police Department’s second in command, abruptly retired on the eve of a disciplinary hearing into his conduct in the investigation of Henry Glover’s death. Now, the Louisiana State Police has publicly released its damning 33-page report (PDF) of its investigation.

Investigators describe Defillo’s actions in the case as “neither reasonable nor responsible” and say his “myopic” approach to the investigation led to an “investigative paralysis [that] would forestall justice for seven more months.”

At issue are Defillo’s actions after he received a call in June 2008, alerting him that reporter A.C. Thompson was working on a story (and eventually the FRONTLINE film Law & Disorder) about police involvement in Glover’s death. It wasn’t until months later that Defillo opened up a criminal probe.

“One cannot imagine a more serious allegation — that police officers perhaps shot an individual and the body subsequently turned up as charred remains in the back of a burned vehicle. If nothing else, one would think that a person at Defillo’s rank and level of responsibility would want to work diligently to dispute the allegations and absolve the agency from such malicious allegations.”

Defillo’s attorney told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that the report was “rife with opinions and conjecture,” and denied any wrongdoing.

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