An Orleans Parish judge raised the bail Thursday for a New Orleans Police Department officer who was arrested this week and placed on emergency suspension following a second alleged incident of domestic violence involving the same woman.
Criminal District Court Judge Laurie White set bail at $40,000 for James Cunningham, 34, an eight-year NOPD veteran who was arrested Monday morning and booked on counts of domestic abuse battery and false imprisonment.
He pleaded not guilty in Municipal Court on Tuesday, with his bail set at $16,000, and was given a stay-away order.
Cunningham was taken off the streets in January, but he remained on active duty, after his arrest on simple battery and home invasion counts in an incident involving the same woman at the same address.
The reason for suspending him now, NOPD spokesman Tyler Gamble said, was Cunningham’s jailing.
White raised Cunningham’s bail in the earlier home invasion case based on the new arrest, which stemmed from an altercation in which the woman said he became “agitated” while they were having dinner and drinks Sunday evening.
She said she left but Cunningham showed up at her Patterson Drive house, where he started yelling and grabbed her. She said he threatened her and took her phone away when she tried to call police.
Cunningham grabbed her and blocked her exit before she started punching him and broke free, she told police.
Gregory Carter, Cunningham’s attorney, said it was the officer who called 911 after the woman grew agitated.