Inquest into Ronald Greene Louisiana death: Ex-police chief’s diaries are wanted

A former Louisiana state police superintendent is facing possible contempt charges for allegedly neglecting to turn over his personal journals related to the investigation into the death in police custody of black motorist Ronald Greene, PA reports.

Driving the news: A bipartisan state legislative committee plans to move “as soon as possible” to charge former state police chief Kevin Reeves with contempt to compel him to submit requested documents about Greene’s 2019 death, Republican state Rep. Tanner Magee (R-La.), the panel’s chairman, the AP told Monday. Reeves’ lawyers say he is cooperating.

  • Reeves has been accused of covering up the initial investigation into Greene’s death, ignoring a subpoena and failing to attend a hearing earlier this month involving a soldier he allegedly fired for talking about the incident, WBRZ-TV reported.

The context: The diary entries sought by lawmakers related to references Reeves allegedly made to police brutality and Gov. John Bel Edwards (D), per AP.

  • Reeves, who resigned in 2020, previously called Greene’s death “horrific but legal”.

What they say : “Colonel Reeves despises nothing,” Reeves’ attorney Lewis Unglesby told AP. “He didn’t do anything but be cooperative.”

  • Unglesby claimed he prepared photocopies of about a dozen diary entries for lawmakers investigating Greene’s death, but alleged that Magee “got excited and took off,” according to AP.
  • “I want to challenge Mr. Unglesby,” Mage wrote: in response on Twitter on Monday. “He denied my request to take the copy of the documents he prepared from the diary today. He said I could only take them if I agreed not to ask for any more documents.”

The big picture: Footage of Greene’s interaction with the State Police, obtained by PA, captured soldiers beating and dragging him following a high-speed chase nearly three years ago. Soldiers also deployed a stun gun on the 49-year-old.

  • Investigators said Greene’s death amounted to “torture and murder”. No state troopers have been criminally charged in his death.
  • Former state trooper Jacob Brown was charged last September with a federal civil rights violation in connection with Greene’s death. He pleaded not guilty of a charge of deprivation of rights under cover of the law.