Public meetings set for NOPD court monitor selection

Position will ensure consent decree followed

The city and U.S. Department of Justice will hold the first public meetings leading to the selection of a consent decree court monitor for the New Orleans Police Department.

The city and federal government have narrowed the list of candidates to:

The evaluation committee will hold public meetings at 8 a.m. April 2 and April 3 to interview each candidate. The meetings will be held in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome’s Bienville Club Lounge, which can be accessed through the gate B plaza level entrance in garage No. 1.

Proposals each candidate submitted can be found at http://www.justice.gov/crt/about/spl/ and at http://new.nola.gov/purchasing/consent-decree/.

Each monitor candidate will be allowed to make a presentation of up to 30 minutes. The public will then be given up to 30 minutes to comment on the candidates.

The evaluation committee may spend up to one hour asking questions of the monitor candidates after the public comments.

Anyone who wants to provide written comments about the process or the prospective monitor can submit those comments by email to New Orleans Attorney Richard Cortizas at rfcortizas@nola.gov with “Re: NOPD Consent Decree Court Monitor” in the subject line.

Comments also may be mailed or hand-delivered to the following address:

City of New Orleans Attorney, city of New Orleans, Re: NOPD Consent Decree Court Monitor, 1300 Perdido St., New Orleans, LA 70112.

The DOJ and city will review any comments received by March 29. All other written comments must be submitted by noon April 8.

The DOJ and city Sept. 6, issued a request for proposals to serve as the consent decree court monitor for NOPD. Twelve proposals were submitted.

The DOJ and the city formed an evaluation committee to evaluate those proposals and select a consent decree court monitor. The committee met publicly March 7 and selected the five candidates to be interviewed for the position.

The monitor will be responsible for ensuring the NOPD implements a sweeping overhaul of the department as part of a federal consent decree the city requested in May 2010

The 124-page police consent decree spells out a series of strict requirements for overhauling the department’s policies and procedures for use of force, training, interrogations, searches and arrests, recruitment and supervision.

It requires all officers to get at least 24 hours of training on stops, searches and arrests; 40 hours of use-of-force training; and four hours of training on bias-free policing within a year after the agreement takes effect. Other requirements include videotaping all interrogations about suspected homicides or sexual assaults and installing video cameras and location devices in every patrol car.

From staff and wire reports