Cop accused in cover-up reinstated to force
NEW ORLEANS -- A former New Orleans police officer accused in the cover-up of the burning and deadly shooting of Henry Glover just days after Hurricane Katrina is back on the force.
The New Orleans Advocate reports the Civil Service Commission unanimously agreed Monday to reinstate Lt. Travis McCabe, approving an "amicable settlement" between McCabe and the police department.
McCabe was convicted in 2010, then granted a retrial over allegations he helped hide the officer-involved shooting that killed Glover. The reinstatement, with about three years of back pay, came a week after federal prosecutors dropped their case against him.
McCabe declined to comment, but his attorney, Eric Hessler, says McCabe has always maintained his innocence. Hessler says reinstatement to the force was the commission's only legal and just outcome.
-- The Advocate
Cooling plan proposed for Louisiana death row
BATON ROUGE -- The state corrections department said Monday the only way it can lower heat levels on Louisiana's death row to a federal judge's requirements is by installing air conditioning.
U.S. District Judge Brian Jackson ruled in December that death row gets so hot it violates U.S. constitutional protections against cruel and unusual punishment.
He demanded a plan that will cool the cells at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola so the heat index never goes above 88 degrees, a plan that state prison officials filed Monday with the court.
Windows and fans are currently the primary sources of ventilation on death row, which was built in 2006.
The heat remediation proposal submitted by the Department of Corrections and the Angola prison would involve buying air conditioning units and a climate monitoring system for the cells.
-- Associated Press
Soldier arrested after troopers find marijuana
PORT ALLEN, La. -- Louisiana State Police have arrested a U.S. Army sergeant after they pulled him over near Port Allen for a traffic violation and found 23 pounds of marijuana in a duffel bag.
Trooper 1st Class Jared Sandifer says troopers booked Sgt. Horace Brown, of Cantonment, Fla., into the West Baton Rouge Parish Jail on multiple counts of possession with intent to distribute marijuana and improper lane usage.
Troopers contacted the Army's Criminal Investigative Division about the arrest.
Sandifer say troopers stopped Brown's Chrysler 200 on Interstate 10, west of La. 415, at about 3 a.m. Sunday. When they searched the vehicle, he says troopers found the drugs in the bag.
The Advocate reports Brown told troopers he had left Fort Polk and was headed to Fort Bragg, N.C.
-- The Advocate
Judge overturns man's conviction, death sentence
NEW ORLEANS -- A federal judge has overturned a 56-year-old man's death sentence and conviction in a 1993 murder during an armed robbery of a Natchitoches Parish nightclub.
U.S. District Judge Dee D. Drell of Alexandria granted Willard Allen's petition seeking to overturn his 1994 first-degree murder conviction in the Sept. 7, 1993, slaying of Herman Ferguson during an armed robbery of a night club where Ferguson was a patron.
"We find the state trial court allowed an avowedly biased juror ... to be seated on petitioner's jury," Drell wrote in his ruling, issued last Thursday.
In addition, the court granted Allen's appeal of whether he had adequate assistance of counsel.
Allen's trial attorney, James Calhoun, did not challenge the juror's inclusion either for cause or with one of his peremptory challenges, and the trial court seated him on the jury, the ruling said.
-- Associated Press