Tuesday, January 27, 2009

October 13, 2003

ACLU Foundation of Louisiana
P. O. Box 70496
New Orleans, LA 70172
Phone 504-522-0617

October 13, 2003

Patrick Brasseaux #1000186462
3 D1-5
P. O. Box 388
Gretna, LA 70054

Dear Mr. Brasseaux:

In response to your concern about the actions of the law enforcement officers, the ACLU of Louisiana recommends doing two things: gathering evidence of the incident and filing a complaint about the incident.

You will need evidence in order to prove that the incident occurred. You may want to do the following to best preserve your legal rights.
1. Get the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all witnesses.
2. Get the car numbers and badge numbers of all law enforcement officers present.
3. Get the date and time of the incident.
4. Maintain a file that includes copies of all paperwork.
5. Write everything down!
6. Take photographs of any injuries.
7. Seek legal help.

If you want to file a complaint of the incident, file your complaint with:
1. The Federal Bureau of Investigation in your area or here in New Orleans at: 1250 Poydras St., Suite 2200, New Orleans, LA 70113
2. The Internal Affairs Department of the appropriate law enforcement agency.
3. LA Attorney General Richard Ieyoub at: 626 N. 4th Street, 5th Floor, Baton Rouge, LA 70802. Tel. #225-342-8495.

Once you have taken the appropriate steps, remember:
1. DO NOT plead guilty to anything without talking to a lawyer.
2. DO NOT give any statements without consulting a lawyer.
3. DO NOT discuss this incident with the Internal Affairs Department of the law enforcement agency while filing your complaint with them. (They are usually very protective of their officers and may use the information against you.)

The community needs good law enforcement officers that are held accountable to the people by the people. Thank you for being vigilant to maintain such accountability. We have enclosed an excerpt -- taken from a past newsletter -- covering encounters that may be of some assistance to you in the future.

In addition, you may want to consult with a private attorney to determine any other options you may have. For referrals, you may contact the Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service at 504/561-8828 (New Orleans area), 225/344-9926 (Baton Rouge area), or 337/436-3308 (Lake Charles area). In addition, we have enclosed a referral brochure, which lists agencies that provide different kinds of assistance.

Joe Cook
Executive Director

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