A retired New Orleans cop has been booked on counts of impersonating an active police officer and trying to intimidate someone with a gun.
Police arrested Gregory Migaud, a 26-year veteran of the force who retired more than a decade ago, in May after he was accused of urinating on the sidewalk in the Irish Channel and then flashing a badge and a weapon at a woman who complained about it.
Meanwhile, the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office has confirmed that Kenneth Landrieu, who was arrested on Monday and booked on impersonating a peace officer and aggravated assault, held an honorary “special reserve deputy” title at the agency, which does not grant him any law enforcement authority.
Landrieu, a cousin of Mayor Mitch Landrieu, said this week that he expected to be cleared of the impersonation charge because of his reserve status.
The incident involving Migaud occurred about 5 p.m. on May 24. A woman told police that she was walking her dog and happened upon Migaud, 62, relieving himself at the intersection of Third and Annunciation streets.
“Do you have to pee on the sidewalk?” the woman asked, according to a police report.
At that point, she told police, the allegedly intoxicated ex-cop said, “I’m a policeman. I can do whatever I want.”
The woman said Migaud then flashed a badge at her, pulled out a silver semi-automatic handgun and pointed it in her direction.
As the woman called for help from friends in the park, she said, Migaud hopped into a vehicle and drove off. She was able to catch his license plate number, and police traced it to an address in Metairie, where they found him wearing an NOPD necklace.
A warrant drawn up by Detective Michael Poluikis noted that some details of the woman’s story did not check out: Migaud looked taller than the woman described, and he had a short crop of white hair instead of reddish shoulder-length hair.
But then Migaud allegedly admitted to Poluikis that he had an altercation with a “nut” near a bar at Second and Annunciation streets, an apparent reference to the Irish Channel Corner Club. Migaud also told police that “he had a gun with him at the time of that altercation but primarily kept it in his vehicle.”
He claimed that while he was urinating, the woman confronted him in an “irate” manner and he told her and her friends to stay away from him.
At that point, police said, they decided to act. Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies stripped Migaud of his retired NOPD commission, a silver badge and a black Glock model 27, .40-caliber, semi-automatic handgun found inside the sedan.
Efforts to reach Migaud on Friday were not successful, and his attorney, Joseph Bartels, did not respond to requests for comment.
It is not out of the ordinary for a retired officer like Migaud to have a badge.
NOPD spokesman Tyler Gamble said retiring NOPD officers in good standing can request and receive retired officer commissions, documents which identify them as former police officers.
“While it doesn’t give them the authority to act like an active police officer, it’s something they’re able to keep,” Gamble said. Many officers also buy additional badges from uniform stores, he said.
Migaud is facing charges of aggravated assault, impersonating a peace officer and obscenity. Court records show that he posted a $2,500 bond after being arrested in May.
While prosecutors accepted the officer impersonation charge against Migaud on July 22, whether the same allegation against the mayor’s cousin will stick is unclear.
Police say the purported victim in that case identified Landrieu as the man who emerged from a Cadillac DeVille in the Lower Garden District with a six-pointed brass star pinned to his collar and a gun in his hands.
The man on the other end of the gun, who has not been named, told police that Landrieu ordered him to pull over and said that his “boys” were going to search the man’s car and possibly arrest him.
Landrieu claimed earlier this week that he “could” be a commissioned reserve officer or deputy, although he declined to state with which agency.
Marc Ehrhardt, a spokesman for Sheriff Marlin Gusman’s office, said Landrieu was named as a special reserve deputy by former Civil Sheriff Paul Valteau — one of a slew of honorary commissions that Valteau and other local law enforcement leaders have handed out over the years to friends and celebrities.
Ehrhardt said the title, which comes with a badge that reads “Honorary” on the back, continued for Landrieu and others after the civil and criminal sheriff’s offices were merged in 2008.
He said the honorary deputies volunteer for a program to help lost kids during Carnival and at some community service events, including the sheriff’s celebrated Easter egg hunt and Thanksgiving dinner.
“It’s a community service group,” Ehrhardt said. “Kenneth Landrieu has not been active in these different events for a while.”
A state official said the Louisiana Peace Officer Standards and Training Council database — which tracks officer certification, reserve officers and firearms qualifications — does not have any post-2008 records for Landrieu.
Editor’s note: This story has been changed to correct the name of the former NOPD officer accused of impersonating a police officer.
Staff writer John Simerman contributed to this report.