Hammond police chief terminated after 34 years

HAMMOND, LA (WVUE) - After months of efforts to have him removed, the longtime police chief of Hammond was fired Monday. The mayor's office sent former Chief Roddy Devall a termination letter this morning and ordered him out of the office.

After a year-long saga that played out before the Hammond Civil Service Commission, Devall was terminated.

"Certainly we're disappointed the mayor would terminate a 34-year employee who has never had any prior complaints or disciplinary action taken against him in his entire career," said Devall attorney Ron Macaluso.

The termination comes a year after the chief issued a press release about the firing of a Hammond police officer following a drug investigation. The officer claimed the release gave her home address and placed her children in jeopardy.

"There's no evidence of that accusation," said Macaluso, adding, "A press release was issued following the arrest of a Hammond officer for violation of drug laws. It was an investigation that DEA participated in, an arrest warrant was issued by a judge, the officer was booked as any felon would be booked, and a press release was issued, as routine as every day."

The Hammond Civil Service Commission investigated the matter earlier, and though Devall's attorney says he will appeal, it's unclear where he will do that.

"They had to recuse themselves. Now the Civil Service board is recused, and the conundrum is the chief has to file an appeal, but the board is recused, so what happens next?" asked Macaluso.

There was no comment from Hammond's mayor on Devall's termination, but a new police supervisor Assistant Chief Tom Corkern, has been appointed.

The city says the full-time police chief job is open.

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