Complaints about police not on council's agenda

No discussion of allegations of improper police actions is expected at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

At this past Thursday’s pre-meeting, Mayor Bob Morris asked council members present if either wanted it on the agenda.

Jack Burson, Chawana Fontenot and Marguerite Fruge-Simpson were unanimous in their silence. Bubba Bourque and Dale Soileau were absent.

Police Chief Gary Fontenot was at the agenda-setting session and also declined to express any interest in the matter being on the agenda.

The council can discuss police affairs, as it has many times in recent months, but can only act on recommendations from the chief.

A group of African American residents claims two African American officers are targeting their race.

Fontenot said his department is investigating the complaints.

The Opelousas Police Chief denied Fontenot’s request to take up the probe, claiming Officer A.J. Frank’s rights under state statutes have already been violated.

Fontenot said he and St. Landry Sheriff Bobby Guidroz will meet in the upcoming week to discuss the allegations and investigations.

“I welcome his input as to whether he wishes to assist and/or conduct his own independent investigation,” Fontenot said.

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