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17 November 2005

your police chief no longer available to sell you drugs? here's another. If he's currently unavailable, keep watching Vleeptron.


The New Orleans Times-Picayune (Louisiana USA)
Saturday 20 August 2005

Top cop is held on drug charges
He's accused in sale of cocaine,
pain pills


By Allen Powell II
River Parishes bureau


The Lutcher police chief, accused of selling $5,000 worth of narcotics to undercover federal officers, was denied bond on Friday after a federal judge determined he represented too much of danger to society to be released.

Corey Pittman, 29, was remanded without bail to the custody of U.S. marshals by Magistrate Judge Louis Moore Jr. during a detention hearing in federal court in New Orleans. A grand jury will be convened to determine whether Pittman will be indicted on charges of selling $5,200 worth of crack cocaine, cocaine and prescription drugs to federal Drug Enforcement Administration officers during a sting operation over the past three months, said Jan Maselli Mann, the first assistant U.S. attorney.

Mann said that Pittman could be indicted within the next few weeks, and said she cannot say what his maximum sentence could be until then.

In his formal detention order, Moore said that Pittman failed to overcome the prosecution's contention that drug defendants typically represent a danger to society, and therefore should not be released on bond.

Mann said that federal prosecutors did not treat Pittman any differently from any other drug defendant, although she said his position as a law enforcement official did make his crimes more egregious.

Pittman's mother asked the court to grant bail for her son, but to no avail. Pittman was provided with a federal public defender, but his attorney did not return several calls for comment on Friday.

Pittman, who was elected as Lutcher's youngest and first black police chief in 2002, was arrested Wednesday after officials lured him to St. Charles Parish, saying they needed to discuss an imminent arrest in his jurisdiction.

Federal officials said they have videotapes of Pittman selling drugs to federal officers on several occasions, at times while wearing a T-shirt proclaiming his job title.

All told, federal officials claim that Pittman sold five ounces of crack cocaine, one ounce of cocaine hydrochloride and 40 tablets of hydrocodone, a pain pill. One transaction took place at night near a Garyville school and the most recent one at a Reserve gas station on Aug. 12, officials said.

Pittman's arrest has rocked the 6,000-resident community of Lutcher, where many residents say that Pittman has been a great police chief since his inauguration. They said Pittman seemed to be an upstanding citizen who had the best interests of the community at heart.

Some St. James Parish officials said there had been rumors of possible illegal drug activity, but nothing had been substantiated.

However, Pittman, who headed a four-person department and made $24,000 annually, had previously admitted to selling narcotics in his youth, but while campaigning for the job he told residents that part of his life was over.

Lutcher Mayor Troas Poche has said he will take over as police chief until a legal decision is rendered as to whether a special election can be held. Under Louisiana law, public officials may remain in office unless they are convicted of a felony.

Allen Powell II can be reached at apowell@timespicayune.com and (985) 652-0952.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Cliff said...

It was racism, no it was a conspiracy. I love to hear about cops getting hoisted on their own petard. Too bad he happened to be black.

10:19  

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