ACLU filed suit in 2017 challenging DA’s unconstitutional deception and abuse
NEW ORLEANS – The American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana today commended a proposed New Orleans City Council resolution calling on the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s office to stop jailing the victims of sexual assault and domestic violence.
Last year, the ACLU, the ACLU of Louisiana, and Civil Rights Corps filed suit in federal court to end the unconstitutional deception and jailing of crime victims and witnesses, among other violations by District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro, his deputies, and his office.
“District Attorney Cannizzaro’s flagrant and repeated abuses of power have undermined trust with the community and violated the rights of the people he’s sworn to serve,” said Bruce Hamilton, ACLU of Louisiana staff attorney. “There is no excuse for the harassment, intimidation and imprisonment of sexual assault and domestic violence victims – but that didn’t stop Cannizzaro from asking the courts to put at least 150 victims and witnesses in jail. We commend Councilmembers Moreno, Williams and Gisleson Palmer for taking a stand against these cruel and unconstitutional practices as our court case proceeds.”
The resolution, sponsored by Councilmembers Helena Moreno, Jason Rogers Williams and Kristin Gisleson Palmer names the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office, the New Orleans Police Department, Orleans Parish Criminal District Court, Orleans Parish Magistrate Court, and Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office in the request.
The resolution proposes that the New Orleans City Council will collaborate with the state legislature to look at policies and legislative measures.