NOPD chief speaks out about deadly hit-and-run

NOPD chief speaks out about deadly hit-and-run

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - NOPD chief Michael Harrison spoke for the first time Wednesday about the deadly New Year's Day hit-and-run that claimed the life of Josh Woodruff.

"We have some video, we found some better video, and if anyone has any better video than what we have, we need that," Harrison said.

It's hard to know what video the New Orleans Police Department has of the gruesome accident, because so far, the department has only released a few still photographs of the black sedan they're looking for.

"The video is being processed by the forensics unit, but when we can, and when the video is ready, we're going to put that out as fast as we can, and our investigators are continuing to look for more," Harrison said.

From French Quarter homeowners FOX 8 obtained multiple surveillance videos taken along the route that police believe the sedan dragged Woodruff's body. Some of those homeowners, along with business owners we talked to, said they were never contacted by police.

Lt. Anthony Micheu of the Traffic Division is heading up the investigation.

"When my investigators look at the route, they're looking for cameras, they're looking for any list of people they can get in contact with," Micheu said. "They've knocked on doors. I'm sure if these people on Ursulines have said that nobody's been in contact, go back and look at the footage. They're gonna see my guys on foot, knocking on doors."

But the reason some homeowners - especially on Ursulines - are upset, is because the SafeCam NOLA program, which is set up with the New Orleans Police and Justice Foundation, provides contact information for every person with a camera in the Quarter who is registered. That means that even if people weren't home, police, including Traffic Division investigators, would be able to contact them to get footage to help with the investigation. That's exactly what we did - called and tracked down people we thought might have surveillance video.

When asked if Traffic Division investigators have access to SafeCam NOLA's site, Harrison said, "They have access to it, correct, they do. I'm telling you that they had access, and they're conducting their investigation."

It's clear the goal of both the police department and concerned residents is the same: to catch the person responsible for killing Woodruff. Woodruff's family said they don't want retribution, just justice.

"We just would like to protect the public from whoever this person was, because they clearly have no respect for human life," Mark Woodruff said

Police said Woodruff was hailing an Uber when he was hit. Harrison wouldn't say if he thinks it was an Uber driver who hit Woodruff, or even if the company had been contacted, simply telling us that's part of the investigation.

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