LOUISIANA — Louisiana State Troopers worked across the state this past weekend to ensure public safety for the Carnival weekend. Troopers successfully partnered with local, state, and federal agencies throughout the weekend, participating in parades and Mardi Gras activities in each of the nine Troop areas.
There were over 150 Troopers assigned to New Orleans through the weekend. They partnered with New Orleans Police, New Orleans Fire Department, Alcohol and Tobacco Control, Department of Corrections, and the State Fire Marshal's Office answering calls for service, providing crowd control, providing assistance to visitors and motorists, investigating crashes, and providing proactive criminal patrols.
Troopers patrolled on foot and in vehicles alongside New Orleans Police Officers across the city, with a larger concentration in and around the French Quarter. In New Orleans and across the state, Troopers managed to provide this additional safety and patrol strength at no additional expense to the state. Troopers adjusted their time throughout the pay period so that no overtime would be accrued, and lodging was provided at the expense of the city of New Orleans.
Troopers' presence in New Orleans through the weekend resulted in over 7,000 public assists, over 350 calls for service answered, 16 pistol seizures, 18 narcotics seizures, 17 juvenile contacts (curfew and underage drinking), 21 felony arrest (11 narcotics related), and 92 arrests for various crimes (DWI, disorderly conduct, simple possession of narcotics, and other related charges). Troopers' activities were focused specifically along the parade routes, such as Canal and Bourbon Street and in heavily congested areas throughout the French Quarter.
Statewide, Troopers assisted with crowd control and parade assistance in nearly a dozen cities and conducted aggressive, proactive DWI enforcement in every Troop area. Troopers arrested nearly 200 people on DWI and related charges. Unfortunately, Troopers also investigated 7 fatal crashes through the weekend. A common aspect of these fatal crashes was the lack of seat belt use.
"I am very proud of the dedicated work of our Troopers across the state this Mardi Gras season. They were committed to providing our citizens and visitors a safe environment for one of Louisiana's greatest traditions," stated Colonel Mike Edmonson, State Police Superintendent. "Our efforts were possible due to the established partnerships with public safety agencies across the state and the overwhelming cooperation and assistance we received from the general public and businesses throughout the weekend."