- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 24, 2014

HAMMOND, La. (AP) - Hammond Police Chief Roddy Devall has been ordered back on the job by a New Orleans-based federal judge who determined that the city’s civil service board failed to give the chief a hearing before placing him on administrative leave.

The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/1m9Mn8E ) the June 17 ruling does not stop the Hammond Municipal Police and Fire Civil Service Board from conducting an investigation into the complaint lodged against Devall.

On Monday, the board received a copy of the evidence and findings on the incident that resulted in Devall’s being placed on administrative leave with pay but chose not to publicly discuss the report’s contents until later this week.

Mark A. Waniewski, chief executive officer of PMI Resource of Shreveport, a law firm that specializes in civil service law, presented the five members of the civil service board with binders containing the findings in the case.

After Waniewski’s brief presentation, David Danel, chairman of the board, said the investigation’s conclusions in the case would not be released to the public until members of the board had a chance to review the matter. Danel said a public hearing will be held Thursday so the matter can be discussed in open session. The time of that meeting will be announced later, Danel said.

Waniewski’s firm was hired after a complaint was made by Hammond police Officer Jennifer Payne in early May that claimed the release of personal information following her arrest on April 25 on alleged drug charges had placed her in possible danger. Following Payne’s arrest for alleged “doctor shopping,” Payne claims that Devall authorized the release of a news story that included Payne’s picture and her home address.

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Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com

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