First, great article, Jim, just as you've done throughout this ordeal and on other matters pertaining to LSP.

Now, I know what I'm about to write will most certainly not be popular; however, as that saying goes, "it is what it is.":

The members of the LSPC are essentially jurors. As such, though their final decision may not even coincide with their own opinions on the matter, as jurors, they are to listen to the evidence and testimony and then take the appropriate action in light of that evidence and testimony.

I have attended approximately 65% or so of the four-day hearing. Not only did Major David McClendon testify that, if Edmonson approved the side trip (which the evidence was overwhelming that he did and even cheered it on), then the issue of disciplinary action "would have to be revisited," ( but beyond that, Col. Kevin Reeves, near the end of his testimony and when quizzed by LSPC Chairman Eulis Simien, Jr. stated in no uncertain terms (see from the 24:00 - 24:34 mark of the SECOND video on this post:, that, "if the previous administration approved the rates for the hotel charges" there was no violation! Also, on that same video, watch from the 26:05 - 26:32 mark, and we discover that Col. Reeves also testified that, if Col. Edmonson instructed Trooper Derrell Williams to play golf and network with the Motorola representatives and that he considered him "on the clock" when doing so, that too is NOT a violation.

Hence, as jurors, the LSPC has an obligation to consider the testimony entailing the above revelations and take the appropriate action. In my humble opinion, that is going to necessitate the following:

1. Trooper Williams' demotion will be overturned, his previous rank will be reinstated, and he will be issued back pay for the time he has been demoted. I do not believe he will be reinstated to his prior position in Internal Affairs because of the inappropriate emails sent on the LSP computer email account.

2. Entailing those inappropriate emails, I believe the LSPC will instruct that a letter of reprimand be placed in Williams' file for that infraction.

3. Trooper Hyatt's demotion will be overturned, his previous rank will be reinstated, and he will be issued back pay for the time he has been demoted. The evidence has been overwhelming that Hyatt was forced to drive as a condition of attending (he indicated today a total lack of enthusiasm when first told he would have to drive) and that, as attorney Floyd Falcon stated at the outset of the hearing, that was a requirement "so Colonel Edmonson could have a Ford Expedition at his beck and call and a driver in San Diego."

I believe that, as a means to offset this huge inconvenience of having to drive for an ungodly number of hours, Col. Edmonson permitted the sight-seeing at the Grand Canyon and even the stay in Las Vegas to offset that long and physically and mentally draining drive. 

Col. Reeves has made it abundantly clear that it's a new day at LSP on items like this, and Hyatt acknowledged that is why he repaid the $1,300 applicable for the side trip. He indicated that, under the current administration, his side trip would not have been tolerated, so he repaid the money to conform with what he felt was "the right thing to do" under the current administration. 

Hyatt also testified just what an awkward position Edmonson placed him in and made it abundantly clear that none of the three troopers appreciated Edmonson making them drive (or else just not go to the convention) and then denying that he had any knowledge they'd made the side trip when, in reality, he cheered them on the whole way (though he did indicate in one text "you guys need to get on to San Diego").

I believe that Hyatt's ultimate punishment will be determined to be repayment of the funds applicable for the side trip, which he has already done.

4. Trooper Thurman Miller's letter of reprimand will be expunged from his file. Col. Reeves indicated that "common sense" would have dictated not making this side trip, and that's true. It is also "common sense" that only an idiot would drive from Natchitoches, Louisiana to Baton Rouge only to then have to ride with a crew from Baton Rouge back to Natchitoches, Louisiana when going to San Diego! Miller stated that made no sense. The bottom line is he had no idea they were even going to take the "northern route," and thus would also be in the dark on the adventures along the way. Thus, in the truest sense of the phrase, he was literally "along for the ride." Under those circumstances, I do not believe the letter of reprimand was appropriate, and I think the commission members will see it the same way.

Now, as I said, I know many folk will be mad at the ruling that is likely forthcoming, but with the advantage of attending the hearing, I hope more folk will understand why it is being made. 

I find it appalling that Col. Edmonson ran an operation in the manner he did, but ultimately, the blame for all of this rests with Gov. John Bel Edwards! Why? Because he knew Edmonson was a known dubious character from the outset, and he even admitted that Edmonson “duped him” back in 2014: 

The preceding statement about Gov. Edwards is NOT a political statement. It is a statement of simple fact! Edwards rolled the dice with Edmonson, and it came up snake eyes, and Edwards knew the risk he was taking and that the odds of a snake eyes roll were extremely high.

Col. Reeves inherited one hell of a mess; however, his testimony indicates he plans to be a “no bull s---” leader. Hopefully, this will be one of the last sad chapters of Mike Edmonson’s tenure because his so-called leadership was an unmitigated disaster; furthermore, him readily throwing his troopers under the bus in the manner he did in this instance is shameful and an indication of his true character, which, being blunt is horrendously bad.

If anyone read all this, thank you. I will have a Sound Off Louisiana post in coming days regarding today’s testimony, but for those who may wish to watch the testimony of the three troopers, here are the links:



and finally, 


This whole episode was an embarrassment and a disgrace, and it stresses the absolute necessity of making an LSP Colonel appointment of someone with a high level of character. Regrettably, Gov. Jindal appointed the exact opposite, and Gov. Edwards, at least according to Edmonson (who certainly has no qualms playing loose with the truth), told Edmonson on the night of the election victory, “I never considered anyone else for LSP Colonel but you.” You reap what you sow, Gov. Edwards, and your decision was an unmitigated disaster, and many people, including huge supporters of yours, warned you this was going to transpire, but you turned a deaf ear to their warnings. Get ready to sow the results of that action in 2019!