Sheriff asking to make the city a co-defendant in prison lawsuit

Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman is trying to spread anticipated financial pain at his jail complex to Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration. Gusman’s attorneys filed papers Friday with U.S. District Judge Lance Africk seeking to include the city as a third-party defendant in an ongoing lawsuit alleging that Gusman has been running an unconstitutional, unsafe jail rife with brutality, understaffing and other problems.

On Friday, the city said that the move by Gusman was part of the plan all along.

Coalition urges mayor to 'man up' and fulfill promises on jail size and budget reforms

By Matt Davis, The Lens staff writer |

A reform coalition, calling for a smaller, more accountably budgeted jail, dropped off two copies of a 2,200-signature petition at City Hall this afternoon, having grown impatient with Mayor Mitch Landrieu for failing to “man up” on the issue. “I think the mayor just needs to step up,” said Orleans Parish Prison Reform Coalition member Norris Henderson, who also runs the reform group Voice of The Ex-Offender.

Justice panel squawks about 'rubber stamp' role on agency funding; Carter vows reform

By Matt Davis, The Lens staff writer |

James Carter, Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s criminal justice coordinator, got an earful Tuesday at his very first meeting with the city’s Criminal Justice Council. The panel, comprising judges, the sheriff, the police chief and the occasional City Council member meets annually to allot state and federal grants that this year were just shy of $2 million.