A former investigator on the north shore charged with soliciting sex from a woman in return for a bail reduction for her boyfriend pleaded guilty Thursday, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Michael Cotton, 68, worked as a part-time investigator with the 22nd Judicial District Attorney's Office, which includes St. Tammany and Washington parishes, under DA Walter Reed, who was later convicted of 18 counts of federal corruption charges. He was put on leave in April 2015 and fired in August of the same year.
Prosecutors said Cotton “offered to intervene in legal proceedings and obtain favorable legal outcomes,” such as reductions in bail, for three women charged with crimes and their friends, family and significant others charged with crimes in exchange for sexual favors.
In July 2015, Cotton demanded sex from a woman whose boyfriend was jailed in lieu of $25,000 bail. In return, Cotton promised the woman he would get the bail reduced to a $30 signature bond.
Between December 2013 and March 2014, Cotton requested sexual favors from a 28-year-old woman in exchange for helping her retain custody of her children and eliminating a drug testing condition, according to the statement.
Cotton now faces a maximum jail sentence of 10 years and up to a $250,000 fine. His sentencing is set for March 14.
In other cases handled by local authorities:
• A 38-year-old woman parked on the side of the road with her car door open was robbed of her vehicle by a man who approached her and successfully demanded she get out about 8:25 p.m. Thursday in the 2100 block of Constance Street in the Lower Garden District, New Orleans police said.
• Two men, one wielding a gun, walked into a business about 11:40 p.m. Thursday in the 3200 block of St. Claude Avenue in Bywater and stole money from a register being worked by a 38-year-old man, New Orleans police said.
• A 24-year-old woman was cut with a boxcutter after she chased a man and a woman down whom had pickpocketed $25 from the victim at the corner of Esplanade Avenue and Decatur Street on the edge of the French Quarter about 12:15 a.m. Friday, New Orleans police said. The woman who was cut was taken to a hospital while the couple who attacked her fled.
• Two rapes were reported to the New Orleans Police Department on Thursday. A 28-year-old woman reported being assaulted by a man she knew about 3:25 p.m. in the 200 block of North Galvez Street in Mid-City. A 17-year-old girl reported the other about 10:20 p.m. in the 1200 block of Pauline Street in St. Claude, telling police a man she knew had raped her.
• A New Orleans East man was booked in connection with two separate armed robberies last month on Thursday.
Police said Derrick Robbins, 18, was arrested at his home. He is accused of robbing a woman of her iPhone and cash in the 4900 block of Alsace Street on Nov. 14. Hours later, he robbed another woman of her iPhone and cash at the corner of General Pershing and Constance streets, police said.
Robbins is being held in lieu of $150,000 bail.