Prosecutors have dropped charges against a Crowley husband and wife, both attorneys and accused of threatening police officers who kicked in their door when responding to a neighbor’s 911 call that someone at the home may have been in distress.
The dismissal was filed into the Acadia Parish court on Thursday, almost six months after a grand jury indicted J. Clay LeJeune, 45, on three counts of public intimidation and retaliation and two counts of resisting a police officer with force or violence in the May 25, 2014, incident. His wife, Mitzi Mayeaux, 41, was indicted on one count of public intimidation.
Seventh Judicial District Attorney Bradley Burget dismissed all charges in the case. The state Attorney General’s Office appointed Burget to the couple’s case in April, as both LeJeune and Mayeaux work primarily in the 15th Judicial District.
Burget did not specify in the court record a reason for the dismissal, and he did not return a phone call Monday afternoon seeking comment.
LeJeune said Monday that he’s since moved with his family to Lafayette, citing numerous run-ins with the Crowley Police Department both before and after the encounter.
“It’s certainly a relief,” LeJeune said. “This has kind of been something that we’ve been carrying around for almost a year now. It’s good to finally have this part past us.”
A federal lawsuit LeJeune filed two days after the couple was indicted is still pending. It names as defendants Crowley Police Chief K.P. Gibson, the city of Crowley and Officers Billy Brown, Skeat Thibodeaux, Jacob Primeaux and David Melancon.
In the suit, which seeks unspecified damages for civil rights violations, LeJeune alleges the officers kicked in the door to the couple’s stately Victorian home on North Avenue G with guns drawn, held his two children at gunpoint and shocked him repeatedly with a stun gun while he was being held face down on his front porch.
Along with Mayeaux, the couple’s two daughters, ages 10 and 14 at the time, witnessed the encounter.
The officers’ body-camera footage from the incident was anonymously leaked in December, and part of that footage was broadcast by KATC-TV following the couple’s indictment and subsequent filing of a federal lawsuit.
The video begins after LeJeune confronts the officers on his front porch. After the attorney becomes irate and shouts profanities at the officers, he’s shocked multiple times. The video later shows Mayeaux saying one of the officer’s jobs is “gone,” and she’s arrested while making a phone call to 15th Judicial District Judge Thomas R. Duplantier.
An officer in the video says he kicked in the door because he heard screaming from inside the house.
LeJeune, who also runs a private practice in Crowley, works as a contract defense attorney for the 15th Judicial District Public Defender’s Office. Mayeaux works as a law clerk for Duplantier.
Follow Lanie Lee Cook on Twitter, @lanieleecook, or contact her by phone at (337) 534-0825