SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – An opinion issued by a Caddo Parish judge in early June has determinied the City of Shreveport owes the Shreveport City Marshal’s Office $1,530,405 for operation and expenses accrued over the past 10 years.
The opinion was in response to a January 2020 lawsuit filed by Shreveport City Marshal Charlie Caldwell Jr. against the City of Shreveport claiming the Marshal’s office has received no operational funding since 2008 and has had to pay out of its “discretionary account,” which the suit claims is “nearly exhausted.”
The award, however, was a far cry from the $9.7 million the lawsuit said the City owes, which it claimed it owes the Marshal’s office.
The discretionary account contains money collected for various fees, fines and services, and the lawsuit says claims the City Marshal has had to pay from $700,000 to $900,000 annually out of its own money for operational expenses since 2008.
Throughout the years, the City has paid the salaries and benefits of the employees in the City Marshal’s office, furnishes the building, pays for utility expenses, cleaning, etc., but does not pay for vehicles, vehicle maintenance or training.
In the 16-page opinion, Caddo District Judge Craig Marcott outlined the state laws pertaining to City Marshals’ offices and the specific fees they can legally collect, as well as exactly what the City of Shreveport is specifically responsible for.
Specifically, the by law, the City is responsible to furnish the City Marshal’s Office with one vehicle and its maintenence, which is driven by the City Marshall. However, the City Marshal’s Office has a total of 28 vehicles, 27 of which the City is not responsible for.
In addition, the lawsuit asked for expenses for the Peabody Building, which the City purchased as a training center for the Marshal’s Office because it can’t legally acquire property. The lawsuit asked for building expenses for the Peabody Building, which the City is not legally responsible for.
In an August 2020 judgement, Marcotte ruled that the statue of limitations was 10 years, so his opinion only covered the past 10 years. It is unknown whether Calwell or the City will challenge Marcotte’s opinion in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals