Investigator files federal lawsuit against St. Tammany Parish sheriff over defamation in homicide investigation

Investigator files federal lawsuit against St. Tammany Parish sheriff over defamation in homicide investigation
Eastern District of Louisiana | United States District Court (Source: WVUE)

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A federal agent who questioned the investigation of a woman found shot and burned in her Abita Springs home, is suing St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Randy Smith in federal court over an arrest for criminal defamation.

Smith said he has not been served with a federal lawsuit by Jerry Rogers, or his attorneys, as of Thursday (Feb. 13) afternoon.

“I am confident that any lawsuit that may be filed by Brian Trainor, former Chief Deputy under Jack Strain, on behalf of Jerry Rogers, another long-time Strain employee, will prove to be frivolous and without merit,” Smith said.

The sheriff called the lawsuit a “politically charged stunt” by members of the former Strain administration.

Rodgers criticized the handling of Nanette Krentel’s murder investigation after she was found dead.

The lawsuit said Smith had Rogers arrested unconstitutionally according to how Louisiana’s defamation lawsuit works.

The suit also names two officers involved in the arrest – Chief Danny Culpepper and Sgt. Keith Canizaro.

Among other things, the suit accuses the defendants of unlawful seizure, false arrest, malicious prosecution and violation of the state constitution.

The state attorney general did not charge Rogers in the matter.

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