A veteran New Orleans police officer who raced away from a Causeway Police Department officer and then tried to report his car as stolen pleaded guilty to charges stemming from the 2013 escapade last week, a day after he resigned from the New Orleans Police Department.
Gary J. Calico pleaded guilty Thursday to aggravated flight from an officer and aggravated obstruction of a highway in 22nd Judicial District Judge Raymond Childress’ court, according to Lisa Page, spokeswoman for District Attorney Warren Montgomery.
Childress sentenced Calico to a 2 1/2-year suspended sentence and five years of active probation.
A Causeway police officer saw a northbound 2001 Lexus swerve and nearly strike a curb near midnight on Dec. 18, 2013, and tried to stop it. But the driver, later identified as Calico, fled, and the chase ended up involving State Police, as well.
Calico drove to his home in the Estates of Northpark, a gated subdivision just north of Interstate 12 in Covington. Police, who had to wait for the subdivision’s gate to open, found Calico’s car at his home, but he refused to come out when officers knocked at his door, according to an affidavit.
Calico tried to report his car as stolen but later surrendered to the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.
He initially pleaded not guilty to a single count of aggravated flight in February 2014 and was suspended from the NOPD, where he had served for 22 years.
The incident was not the first time Calico got in trouble for fleeing from police.
In 2007, he was arrested after he was seen at a southbound toll booth with two beers in his car. He refused to pour them out, then led police on a chase across the Causeway that reached speeds of more than 100 mph and ended after he eluded a roadblock just south of the bridge in Metairie.
He was fired after that incident but later was reinstated by the Civil Service Commission.