Report: NOLA Cops Blew Off 1K Sex Crimes
Inspector general finds 5 detectives ignored vast swath of cases
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 13, 2014 7:13 AM CST
In a 2013 file photo, then-New Orleans Police Department Superintendent Ronal Serpas speaks at a news conference as Mayor Mitch Landrieu listens. He's since left the force.   (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

(Newser) – In the latest blow to New Orleans' scandal-weary police department, a city inspector general's report claims five detectives failed to do substantial investigation of more than 1,000 cases of sex crimes and child abuse—with one detective cited for stating that simple rape should not be considered a crime. The report, out yesterday, examined the detectives' work between January 2011 and December 2013 and found "an indifference to our citizens that shouldn't be tolerated." They have been transferred to patrol duty pending further investigation. More particulars, per the report:

  • A detective failed to investigate a case involving a 3-year-old brought to the ER for an alleged sexual assault, closing the case without charges even though the child had a sexually transmitted disease. The same detective closed the book with no charges on two cases involving children brought to the ER with fractured skulls.

  • Another detective allegedly told several people that simple rape—sex without consent of one party—should not be considered a crime. This detective handled 11 simple-rape cases, five of which saw no follow-up reports and one with no initial report.
  • Two detectives are accused of writing six reports—on the same day in 2013—to make it appear that they had done follow-up reports years ago.
  • The detectives classified 65% of 1,290 sex crime cases as "miscellaneous," for which no report at all was written.
  • Of the remaining 450 cases, detectives followed up on only 179 cases; 105 of those were handed over to prosecutors, who in turn prosecuted 74 cases. The report calls on police to fully investigate the 271 cases that the detectives failed to properly check into.