NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A new policy to get 10 extra NOPD officers on patrol goes into effect Monday, just days after the firings of three officers for improper conduct.
Surveillance video from inside the department's French Quarter station shows a man who was arrested for public intoxication in September 2015 kick Officer Alfred Moran to initiate a scuffle.
Officer Moran's attorney, Donovan Livicarri, said his client hit the prisoner a second time because he thought the man was about to spit on him or bite him.
On Wednesday, NOPD announced it had fired Officer Moran, along with officers Lewis Simmons and Christopher Jennings. According to reports, Simmons and Jennings saw what happened and failed to tell their supervisors.
Investigators said at first, all of the officers were only suspended - but later fired for not telling the truth during questioning.
Officer Jeffery Tyler was suspended for five days without pay for not reporting the incident.
According to our partners at NOLA.com | The Times Picayune, Moran had seven previous complaints against him in his four years with the department.
The dismissal of the three officers comes as the department is trying new ways to get more officers who were on desk duty to patrol the streets.
"We found only one officer was getting a call every other night," Chief Michael Harrison said.
From 10 p.m. to 8 a.m., all district stations will be closed to the public except the French Quarter station on Royal Street. That will stay open 24 hours. The shift frees up the officer stationed at the desk answering calls.
Residents see the move as needed.
"I know they're definitely low on their numbers right now, and I think anything that we can do to be preventative is great," Lakeview resident Amanda Sherwood said.
"Seemed like everything they tried before is not working. Why not try something new? Go out the box," Central City resident Charles Gray III said.
"I think 10 police officers is a lot more manpower than it sounds like. That seems like a significant increase in boots on the ground," Lakeview resident Nick De La Rua said.
It's been eight months since a FOX 8 Investigation revealed an average police response time of 73 minutes. Now, the police chief says thanks to new hires, new systems and new deployment strategies, those response times have been reduced.
"Our code 2 responses are on a steady downward trajectory in the past eight months. They've fallen by 40 percent during that time," Harrison said.
Harrison said the department continues to work toward a seven-minute response time, but still hasn't gotten there. He's hoping that a new electronic citation system will soon help.