I-TEAM: BRPD placed officers on leave; matter ‘under investigation’

Jesse Barcelona (left) and Todd Thomas (right)
Jesse Barcelona (left) and Todd Thomas (right)(Baton Rouge Police Department)
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 5:11 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Two officers, at least one of whom was previously assigned to the embattled Baton Rouge street crimes unit, are now on administrative leave.

Baton Rouge Police leaders refused to explain why they placed officers Jesse Barcelona and Todd Thomas on leave, only saying that an investigation had been launched into some situation involving the officers.

Barcelona is identified as a former member of the street crimes unit in court documents. Thomas is a former recipient of several awards for his policing, including a 2016 Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer Award.

The street crimes unit was disbanded and is the subject of criminal and administrative investigations after officers used a processing center known as the Brave Cave for off-the-books interviews.

Officers assigned to Street Crimes were moved to uniform patrol duty as the chief of police investigates.

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