FOX 8 Investigates Update: NOPD officers didn’t do their jobs

After a FOX 8 Investigates report, "Hidden in Plain Sight," prompted the NOPD to launch its own departmental probe, FOX 8 has learned that an NOPD internal investigator has found that two officers who handled a violent hit and run crash did not do their jobs.

In April, FOX 8 Investigates detailed a destructive hit and run crash with five parked vehicles and the front porch of a house.  The pickup truck that caused all the damage was reported stolen, but the truck's owner said he didn't hear from police for six months.

"They had my name and address before I even woke up and knew it was stolen," said Amadeo Guerra of Mid-City.  He's questioned why it took so long to contact him.

Guerra told FOX 8 no police officer ever tracked him down to see if he was the one responsible for the hit and run.  However, a request to tow the vehicle and store it shows the responding officer gave the tow company the truck's Vehicle Identification Number, Guerra's name and his address on the day of the accident.

After our report, the NOPD launched two departmental investigations.  One investigation looked into the officer who wrote the hit and run report.  The other investigation focused on the officer in charge of the follow-up.

Those investigations are now over, and an NOPD spokesperson released this information: "It resulted in a sustained disposition on both officers that handled the case; two counts of neglect of duty each."

Essentially, the police investigator feels the two officers involved violated departmental policy.

Now the case goes to the Public Integrity Bureau, and PIB will have to decide whether those officers need a formal disciplinary hearing.

"I'm not in this to get anybody in trouble or to name call... it just didn't seem right, and you know, to have the department do the internal investigation, and they feel the same way that I do, that things just don't add up for whatever reason... it really feels good," explained Guerra.

To this day, Guerra still doesn't have his truck.  He said the tow and storage costs were $600 when he received notice number one, but they've mounted to thousands of dollars since -- and a worker at the tow company told FOX 8 that the tow company now owns the truck.

"I just want my truck back.  I don't want... you know, I want my truck back... I don't want any money to buy a new truck," said Guerra.

Again, the case is now under review by the Public Integrity Bureau.  Depending on what PIB finds, the case could go to NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas for action recommendation.