WWL>Topics>>2-7-14 12:10pm Don Dubuc: on the exoneration of Travis McCabe

2-7-14 12:10pm Don Dubuc: on the exoneration of Travis McCabe

Feb 7, 2014|

Don Dubuc fills in for Garland and talks with PANO attorney Eric Hessler about the dismissal of the case against Travis McCabe.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

And good afternoon it's Friday Friday edition of think -- -- to -- with you thanks for tuning in as we head into the weekend here and and comic closeout the think tank with some news that developed as recently. A former new lawless police department lieutenant Travis McCabe had all charges dropped against him in the post Hurricane Katrina shooting death of Henry Glover. The Justice Department moved to dismiss those charges so basically it is over there will be no retrial. -- joining us is Eric Kessler who is an attorney for panel. And that is the police association of New Orleans -- thanks for coming in studio appreciated that -- if you would -- background how did you become the attorney for panel. Well I was a policeman enormous for seventeen years toward an in my career -- I was on the executive board of the police association and I also attended law school. And and panel took me on with mr. frank Desalvo who is. Represented them for a decades and did a great great job I was lucky enough and the take -- on and eventually. I was given -- position. Well with seventeen years experience under your belt on the police department -- certainly conceal it from the patrols this -- of police department's perspective as well as an -- that's. Let's go back to the Henry -- a case and you know we do these things a lot of times we've got people who have kept up with this ever since that happened. Have completely new people have never heard of it kind of go over there and Henry Glover case who was involved in -- finally get. To Travis McCabe -- you work. Yes well and as everybody knows you know Hurricane Katrina came. There is a contingent of swat officers who had taken over -- elementary school. As they were Isiah. Working point for that unit out on the West Bank. At some point in the in the fourth district which of the district where pavement is located on West Bank a police officer David -- Shot an individual by name mister Henry Glover. Certainly the communication system which was very poor -- that time. And somehow. The -- mr. Glover -- body was brought by -- friends and relatives. To -- -- -- out is actually. An actual police car got behind the car containing mr. Glover body. That Indy Indy car -- mr. Levy's body was actually pursuit. Until they ended up in the company. And at that point. Obviously police arrested detained and found the individual in the in the backseat of the car. He did expire for a single gunshot wound or gunshot wound its. And the captain of the unit. And lieutenant -- point Sherman who became unfortunately one of the many defendants in this case. Contacted. The new -- police department. On the radio and said look we have had -- victim of a gunshot. He's deceased what where -- we bring him what do we do within who's coming out here to investigate. Give me some guidance and -- -- command instruments. And his guidance was relatively zero they couldn't tell and same thing that could send anybody. They had no quarter they had no morgue. And ranking officer instructed him to bring. To relocate the body. And secure the body in the car on the fourth district police station which is adjacent to the Border Patrol station. And that the line of thinking was. At least they'll be some semblance of security there with with police and federal seek federal law enforcement officers and very close vicinity and and also that the -- understand it he's just had no idea when they're gonna get help and get. The opportunity for people coming in this. It became body in the middle of a police compound. Is certainly not good for morale and it certainly help health has absolutely. And it it just -- was no other options available and so that was done. The one of the officers involved officer Greg McRae who was actually the only. Only defendant whose convictions still stands. As trial testimony which I was under a lot of stress and he and he alone. To flare into that the car which caused the Khartoum. To burn and entry along with via the body of mr. -- Years later. Despite the fact that this was known -- what had occurred. Years later. No one investigated and the federal government began began an investigation. And as that investigation progressed. Numerous police officers were were accused of wrongdoing. And a handful. Subsequently. Charged and tried in federal court for for various federal violations. I David Warren he measures recently acquitted. What was the circumstances on that was it to determine that he thought he would not even hit the movement of the person involved that turn out to -- -- -- -- And why did -- issue was he felt threatened for his life. Obviously this is testimony and in the his reasoning and as long -- any -- a police officer chew chief he can only issue. To save his life for -- -- is -- for that of another. -- He -- just like president was in danger and he fired. Of course because because mr. Glover had grant ran off and because of a whole bunch of unfortunate events he was never able to determine. If he fatally wounded mr. Glover fifty -- -- -- struck. And going back to what I described as a radio problems no one in the fourth district. It was a big miscommunication on whether or not this police shooting the shooting of a mr. Glover was in fact the the the person that ended up in the car and India swat team members had no idea that there was a police shooting or any other shooting. The individuals in a car that that were copying mr. Glover body told him he was shot. In an apartment by somebody who haven't dispute. -- -- They had no idea connection between the -- -- -- in this -- and had there and made that connection. The matter would have been chairman panel to handle in a different. Different way of course I Travis McCabe. He's the one that you representing now from the standpoint of getting reinstatement. What was he initially charged with and found. Guilty of and -- later on there was some new information developed that would have brought about a new trial. Lieutenant McKay was charged with perjury. Obstruction of justice and and and lying to the FB making a false statement the FB. And that the that the crux of that was that he gave a statement to the FBI saying that he. Helped. Author. A report. That dictated the -- the facts -- circumstances of the shooting. By -- war. He later testified to it the exact same facts that he told. The FBI he reiterated its faction for a federal grant her. The FBI. Choose to portray his statements to them as a lie -- for his statements to the printer which perjury. And what was the basis of them saying dent in his report was alive and then this was not accurate. Well you'll have to examine -- personally I'd think -- they wanted to hear something from lieutenant -- that fit their version what they believe happened. And what they wanted to portray. Happened. An -- and lieutenant McCabe. I know him personally. Both professionally and as a friend I work with -- when when I was on the job. -- collect lieutenant McRae is a man of the highest integrity. He actually called me for for legal advice before speaking with the FBI. My advice to him is don't do it. Nothing good can come out. So that they had down here they have an agenda. They're not looking to find out what happened they think they know what happened and they're gonna they're gonna I wouldn't do it. He believed that he should do it. He's told me said -- -- done nothing wrong and I told the truth I've done nothing wrong and I -- -- have anything to worry about. Well lieutenant good luck with that and he went spoke with them and he was subsequently charged. Did. The judge had to use some basis for his action. They had to be some evidence that the the government had to produce that he had falsified the report had to be something they just couldn't say well we surmise that the fictitious lead adopted this this report. Well what they used was the testimony. Of the yup the person who authored the report. And and that was another sergeant. And that sergeant -- testified that. The report that was that was subsequently presented in court was not the one she had written that this was one. That jokes aren't -- in a decade and author and changed and and can. Manipulated to make the shooting of of Glover appeared justified. They keep him on the -- sergeant was also admitted later admitted in a trial of -- to the grand jury as some twenty to thirty times. But nevertheless. After the trial was over after McCabe lieutenant lieutenant McCabe -- which convicted. Based on the the testimony of the Sargent and the report. The original report. Was found and it was founded to -- to contain identical facts and circumstances. That the media. The versions of the report. We're so subtly different. And and not many factual manner that that. The judge had no choice but to. Orders for so the judge convicted him on the basis of the testimony of the other officer and not from the actual factual report does apple was not available to. A jury convicted the jury but it wasn't available to them. They -- not they did not have that -- It was later located. And once the judge what's that -- percentage in the motion for a new trial the judge looked at the two compared to and end it came to only conclusion that he could. Is that had this -- had this report. Being introduced in the first round. And totally different -- -- on a different outcome that would likely. Resulted in the acquittal. Of lieutenant which won a crucial crucial piece of the puzzle absolutely. All right we'll take a break when he will be right back to atonement and Eric Kessler attorney for panel about Travis McCabe. We'll find out where it's gonna go from here he's represented -- trying to get him reinstated in his job back pain or whatever else. You can't join the conversation 260187866. 889087. In a text message board is open. 87870. Will be right back you listen to the think tank Friday style on the big 870 dividend ago. And welcome back into the think tank I gases Eric Kessler were talking about lieutenant Travis McCabe he has been acquitted charges have been dropped there will be no new crop. He is was implicated in the in falsifying a report with the connection in the Henry Glover shooting don't know post Hurricane Katrina. Erica I'm getting some text messages in you can respond to the zone one says -- find -- extremely hypocritical of -- club at a continually -- adamantly scream. For justice for -- son when she didn't seem to care about justice those store owner's son. Was alluding when he was shot another says I find it extremely hypocritical. That well that was same one this -- says in the incident occurred -- martial law. Whether it was signs all around town stating looters will be shot I don't think martial law was haven't declared. But that was a tremendous data confusion going on about what was protocol what was not -- would -- good guys who the bad guys. As you said it was a lack of guidance what about this looting incident how was it the -- that really has never really. Been portrayed as a as a really. Contributing factors to this whole store. Well I say first say this. Ms. -- lost a son and that's -- under any circumstantial -- And she has a right to feel the way should he feels pain and understand and respect. What happened with how mr. Henry Glover got involved. Was that some some. Acquaintances of his war. Removing items looting for Ferguson -- descriptive term were looting items from. I think it was a Tuesday morning which is households shop not necessarily. Items that were needed and necessary but nevertheless -- Officer warned commanded them to the items down and stop. Which they did and and they fled the scene. Apparently mr. Glover was requested to act. To go back to retrieve the whether or not they told by the police on scene I don't know but mr. Glover and another individual went back in eight and there were driving -- -- A Firestone and pick up truck which would install and from Firestone -- And that's when the confrontation began when he returned to get the items. -- -- Also getting some a lot of Texans come in and talking about this person says I stayed for Katrina was absolutely crazy. Couldn't find a cop didn't have a phone everyone was on there. Owned full weeks how much of a point -- played in this whole thing of the fact that there was chaos all over the city. And I don't think the people when this story makes -- on national spotlight I don't think they understand. What it was like and don't think you can and Alicia we you can read about it you can get accounts for the last few here and felt and -- people realize what it was like. Well and I don't think I don't think. American law enforcement has ever faced a situation quite like this before our certainly may be known -- magnitude. Communications or were. Either nonexistent. Or are certainly on reliable. The they have the ability to how is he couldn't arrest people. Because you had -- -- and how is. He couldn't patrol many areas by what we normally patrol by by by car because there are underwater. So. They was little the officers can do. Except be out there. In hand and try and do it on a fly. The command structure. The police department had basically just that disintegrated. And in its. Several several high ranking officers got together and were able to to facilitate some commit some semblance of -- command structure. But it was still almost almost every man for itself tight -- The talk with Eric Kessler attorney for the panel police association one of the guard to. Travis McCabe who has been exonerated in the Henry Glover. Shooting cover up case there will be no new trial. Has been very little information non coming out from that as far as -- it was the -- -- know what she said -- the result was. A new piece of evidence that was found that pretty much exonerated. The fact that he did not. Alter a report that was made so basically there was no cover up -- -- what he said originally was what was verified by this piece of documentation that appeared. Absolutely and that's part of I mean as many tragedies of this this case. Include the death of mr. Glover it was a tragedy was a crime but it was at attracting nevertheless. You had. Four for individual officers who are accused of of crimes which could send them away for a long long time. I believe Turkey's. By persons with an agenda I believe the evidence wasn't. Wasn't looked at proper light. And if it was it was just a terrible terrible thing he had this report gone unnoticed. And Travis McCabe I'd end up in jail for something every -- I we come back after the news so wanna get to talk about what it has been like for Travis -- all these years now he's been. Not knowing what his future holes and what he's seeking now in terms of not being made whole. From what has happened here evidently being wrongly accused will be right back you listen to the Friday edition to think tank. When the big 870 WW well it's news time his Chris -- with the latest. Now welcome back into the think tagged onto beacon for Garland Robinette we're talking about the in the case of Travis McCabe and lawless police officer in the Henry Glover shooting cover up these it's been dismissed by US district judge. Following the recommendation of the federal prosecutors he cannot be tried again. Do you think justices been served he -- to talk more about it is Eric -- he's an attorney for panel the police association of New Orleans. And Erica look and -- some of the text messages and the coming in in this one here that says. On August 31 2005 mayor Ray Nagin declared martial law well I think that text and needs to look up the definition. -- martial law I don't think if you look at -- that a man has the authority to declare. What most people consider martial law. Also giving a lot of of the text in about. The other officer -- wanting to know if you have any information about whether. You know he's gonna maybe get a new -- based on any other information may be coming out. Well I make this clear. I do not represent often occur in I know he has play. Much for a new trial that is pending. In in front of the federal judge. And I also like say I did represent Travis McCabe indiscriminate mass correct. Undeterred by name of Mike small from Alexandra did immediately get a wonderful job I am represented officer McCabe in his. His effort to get reinstated to lose his job. I want has it been like for Travis -- can you explain to people I mean you know he's been wrongly accused he's had that for the years and now. You know to to get this reversal on his case is going to be very very you know rewarding point. It is but you know remarkably enough and I spoke with him several times. Throughout this. I -- Venture ordeal ordeal. He never seemed to. Doubt that he would have and he would eventually be acquitted because of his his. College that he had done nothing wrong which to me it's -- It's pre Kia. Pretty incredible considering. The fact that. Some other officers had been. Had been convicted him but if you look at -- this case fell apart and it it it didn't fall apart because. For legal reasons -- fell apart because evidentiary reasons. And that's. You know it's unfortunate that at this point I think at this point because it was -- driven agenda. Well -- and have a lot of faith in judicial system and it would keep the -- through all of that so what is it now you're representing him. What is he seeking now in terms of being made whole he's been without today's been taken -- the force does he actually wanna go back to work for police and he does he does. That's when he's on for eleven that's where east. -- Placed himself he enjoys his job he's been good police -- he's risen through the ranks. And and he has he has a right to return he was accused of a brick law. And and he's been -- he's been exonerated. He's no longer lose those accusations and a longer life. In the police department never wants. Reprimand -- are charged him with filing a false police report they simply terminated him because of his conviction. Of federal. What has been. The reaction I'm looking to scroll through these text messages and I mean there's a lot of doubt among the public they think that there's some common way that. It was either racially motivated on him as a technicality is something in what would you suggest to them way can they find out. Can they get transcripts to do that interested in this case to find out all the crew and Evans in the accident now come. Well. Sure it's out there. It's out there it's in the court transcripts -- -- you know certain I would say. Read newspaper and believe everything you -- newspaper but it's out there and and you have. You know there's plenty of people that so you know. They should be convicted anyways because it affected depletion and -- police officers are bad what. They're gonna always happy when they choose not to educate themselves on what actually happened. And there's going to be people that don't care what -- that the legal system does they're gonna have their opinions and that's fine. When they're sitting in that position though I think they start to care about being educated and it start to care whether they're legal -- -- protector. I'm getting some references to to Danzig as don't have any impact on this case I mean it totally. Separate cases blew -- people lumping them together and saying badcaps here badcaps this is what went on. Well I think that happens all the time you know 11 -- does something wrong. Or is alleged to have done something wrong everybody's got their bad cop stories here. Or art or personal like that you know I know when a waitress -- a cup of coffee on me I don't think I'll wait is cross America her -- her a -- But you know unfortunately policemen have to live with that. And this is just another example of. As far as -- this is definitely over the as normal nothing Nelson's gonna commodity it was pretty much song was dismissed with produced and they cannot bring this back. Now the government did not give any reasons for its dismissal but. To me. They can't Hillary's in the cries could be. Highly embarrassed by any reason is is that I was that was my next question. The public wants to know that it's and it's a very important part of this whole determination in the result of this case. And I think they owe it to the American public -- don't even if it does make -- I'd love to -- I don't think we'll ever hear why. But it simply because they can't prove their case after annexed. Why I think an explanation would be fascinating narrative cried -- talk. -- Eric Kessler attorney for panel police association Wallace will be right back after this timeout. You're listening to the big 870 WW this is the Friday edition of the think tank that afternoon from the -- gates says. I would talk with -- yes always having guests here in the studio's announcement to come in and chat with -- season attorney for panel is also representing lieutenant Travis McCabe and getting his reinstatement is back -- -- what he deserves -- since the case against him has been dropped by the federal prosecutors. -- a text in that wanted to know about that original report the one that really turn this whole case around. Was found and it cooperated what he said was in his original report and prove that he did not falsified. Which is what he was taught to where did that didn't mysteriously to show up was it. Overlooked in and over you know just a mountain of. Papal document my understanding is that it was provided. That that both sides had a whole time. But it was -- and again I didn't represented many criminal matter. But that was so. Similar to the original report that that the little subtle -- -- that it wasn't factually different views its. Grammar. Punctuation type. And that they just didn't put -- to -- that's my understanding I could be wrong. Just never disputed ballots and this government never disputed that that was affected report. Jeffrey win. Tell -- involved in this case and captain Jeff when it was the commander of of this swat team. And he was called. When the Glover mr. lover's body showed up. He verified that. That. There was no corners office coming know no rank in common at that they had to to. I guess for lack of better term decide what they -- into that and and captain win. Who who was yeah. That 26 year point three year veteran at that time of both the Marine Corps and north police department. Not determined -- the Al problem's going to be horrible not to mention health problem. And we just not leave this he's the one determined bring it. Behind the Levy where that would be very little chance of human contact. And behind the fort district India the Border Patrol office. And he gave that. And which carried out certainly never never had kept and we never had any reason to believe that anything but that what can happen. And years that followed. Especially when this federal investigation. And guess what the police department about this he would he would inform them about this. And years that followed of course the federal investigation wrapped up. I were I actually represented -- when in criminal. Context when he was being investigated criminally. And what was -- tone to he wasn't in charge of investigate McCain and -- was the suspicion that they obviously we -- Capriati at killing of adamant and either I ordered that in and covered it up or -- to Spain cover. Jeff went to my advice not and we chose not to talk with the team -- federal agents. And he had every right to do so he has the constitutional right. Just like every other citizen in America. The fact these replacement hasn't watered down his his constitutional right. And it was quite clear that they believed him to be involved. And I can understand the federal government thinking that but -- offered many towns. And and told the the lead attorney. He's done at the wrong -- he's exercising its ties to -- he wanted to avoid that given immunity in a tell you everything. And he knew nothing more than him what his participation is. And -- they would not give him immunity and and subsequently. After the trial he was never charged by the way. I'm like Travis McCabe who did speak with the feds and NATO's comfortably which was the dilemma that -- when faced. And -- But anyways. In the end and -- -- chose -- -- For not giving them information and and it was within their right to do. I don't think it's within the right of any government body to disregard to its constitution right front. So I'm not excellent not monopoly is right. So does he have a case -- incidental PD well it we appeal to civil service commission. So service commission denied it is his appeal and we are known for circuit but I think when the NO PD against disregard. -- -- -- -- Looks the other way when an employee. Exercise accuses constitutional rights and don't think that sets include. Good message to the public indoors please. Had they given him immunity and -- participate in the information in this case how much different wouldn't have been. For him fought for him and for McCain. Nothing he knew nothing about McCain and he only knew what his actions war. But his -- One -- being accused. You know just your admission Hewitt at the -- of alleged crimes are crimes being investigated your implicating yourself. If they choose not to -- out there but I didn't do anything wrong and -- choose not to believe it. Guess what don't you charge but also charged with you know guitar for the underlying crime but also I also charged for lying to FBI. So that's the dilemma and and they created it and and you know people got to be aware that it's there and protects -- Well it doesn't look like the whole Henry -- cases completely over there's still some some loosens them and at least -- one of the chapters. McCain's case and rough and I -- with with. You know the force for circuit is yet to. Make it. That decision on the cap and Wednesday's but he was well respected. Member of the and a PD for for years and years and years it's resolved itself -- -- for him by Eric wanna thank you come in here and taken on highly complicated -- topic in and simplifying it for real appreciative that. -- Eric Kessler attorney for the police association of --