Storm defense got short shrift; double-billing = theft; road shame in Lakeview

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The thickly landscaped five blocks of Hayes Valley that conclude with a small park attracted a different group last week: 11 visitors from the eastern half of the United States who wanted to see what happens when a double-deck roadway is erased from the map.

“This boulevard is beautiful, in my opinion,” said Jessica Knox of New Orleans, where there’s talk of removing a 1.6-mile stretch of Interstate 10 that cuts through a largely African American neighborhood. “You can’t even tell a freeway was here.”

Responding to an inspector general’s audit that uncovered dozens of misclassified rapes, New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas acknowledged Wednesday there is room for improvement in the department’s crime reporting, even as he disputed the audit and insisted no one under his watch has attempted to “game the stats.”

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