Zurik: Legislative audit of DA Reed's Office has begun

Published: Aug. 28, 2014 at 9:35 PM CDT
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Left, file image of Walter Reed; right, NOLA.com photo of Daryl Purpera
Left, file image of Walter Reed; right, NOLA.com photo of Daryl Purpera

Louisiana's legislative auditor confirms that an audit of the 22nd Judicial District Attorney's office has begun.

St. Tammany Parish President Pat Brister and later DA Walter Reed requested the legislative audit, following numerous reports by FOX 8 News and NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune. Those reports questioned financial practices in Reed's office, which serves St. Tammany and Washington parishes.

Legislative auditor Daryl Purpera told FOX 8 in early August that he was considering the dual requests and that it would take about three weeks to announce a formal response. NOLA.com's Heather Nolan confirmed with Purpera's office Thursday that the audit had begun.

Pres. Brister cited news coverage of Reed's alleged abuses of his position in her requests, and asked that Purpera "assign emergency auditors to conduct a thorough and complete inspection of Walter Reed's office." Reed himself requested the legislative auditor's assistance and guidance "regarding the areas of my office operation being criticized along with my desire to make sure that best practices are part of the transition" to a new district attorney.

Several people are running to replace Reed, who announced he would not be seeking re-election after almost 30 years in office.

It's not known how long the audit will take.

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