Our Voices

ACLU represents Louisiana man seeking justice after violent encounter with LSP

Featuring Delia Addo-Yobo

The ACLU of Louisiana and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights filed a writ application to appeal a misdemeanor criminal conviction on behalf of Anthony Monroe, a Louisiana man who was beaten by Louisiana State Police during a traffic stop and then convicted at a bench trial of resisting arrest. Mr. Monroe is now suing state police for violating his constitutional rights.

On the early morning of November 29, 2019, Mr. Monroe, an elderly Black man, was detained, beaten, and unlawfully arrested by a Louisiana State Police trooper during a traffic stop. While the alleged reason for the traffic stop—speeding—was never pursued, Mr. Monroe was criminally charged with battery and resisting. After a bench trial, Mr. Monroe was convicted on both counts.

Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights attorney Delia Addo-Yobo represents Mr. Monroe in his criminal appeal, raising important questions about the constitutional right to a jury trial. Addo-Yobo said Monroe’s story is not uncommon, as the ACLU of Louisiana’s Justice Lab cases shows. The program, launched on the heels of George Floyd’s murder, has filed dozens of lawsuits that echo Mr. Monroe’s.

“Many people who are harmed by the police are then hit with what are known as cover charges, usually in the form of resisting or battery of an officer to try and cover up instances of police brutality,” she said.

Prior to the 2019 encounter, Mr. Monroe had never had any trouble with law enforcement and had no criminal record.

Click here to read the full article in KTAL NBC News. Delia Addo-Yobo is a staff attorney at Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights.