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OPSO DEPUTY TEMPORARY REASSIGNMENT TO ADDRESS CRITICAL STAFFING SHORTAGE

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
12 JUNE 2022

OPSO DEPUTY TEMPORARY REASSIGNMENT TO ADDRESS CRITICAL STAFFING SHORTAGE

NEW ORLEANS – Today, Sheriff Susan Hutson temporarily recalled all Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office deputies from their posts at the OPSO Training Academy, Transportation Division, and Kitchen Warehouse, as well as deputies who were assigned to Criminal District Court and some assigned to Civil District Court. They are being temporarily reassigned to the Orleans Justice Center to counteract a critical staffing shortage that has persisted for months.

"Losing even one life is one too many. A loss of life in OJC will no longer be treated as simply the byproduct of running a jail – not on my watch. I came into this office with a jail that was severely understaffed. My order calling our deputies in to secure the jail is a temporary measure that I have put in place to protect the lives of every person inside the jail. My full Executive Team and Commanders are accelerating our staffing plan to achieve a long-term solution." – Sheriff Susan Hutson

The Sheriff held an emergency meeting with District Attorney Jason Williams, Chief Judge Robin Pittman of Criminal District Court, and Mayor LaToya Cantrell to discuss her plan to secure the Orleans Justice Center and expressed her commitment to work together to quickly and safely resume normal court operations.

The Sheriff also spoke with Magistrate Judge Lombard and Chief Judge D'Souza of Civil District Court about their respective court operations. She also spoke with Clerk of Civil District Court Chelsey Napoleon and Clerk of Criminal District Court Darren Lombard who offered their support. Additionally, Chief Public Defender Derwyn Bunton pledged to work with her office during this temporary change in operations.

Sections of Criminal District Court will continue to operate virtually daily until they are able to resume normal operations. Civil District Court and the Clerk's Office of Civil District Court will be open on Monday, with the court potentially moving to virtual operations later in the week.

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