Veteran officer who testified in Glover trial sues New Orleans Police Department

Date: Jun 21, 2011

Veteran officer who testified in Glover trial sues New Orleans Police Department

A veteran police detective who testified against fellow officers in the Henry Glover case is suing the New Orleans Police Department and members of its internal affairs unit for allegedly violating his civil rights by intimidating and pressuring him to retire from the force.

In a lawsuit filed last week in Orleans Civil District Court, former Sgt. Ronald Ruiz claims members of the NOPD's Public Integrity Bureau illegally stopped and questioned him in an "ambush" late last year in Jefferson Parish. The suit says PIB officers pulled Ruiz over as he drove with his wife and toddler, then questioned him as to why he wasn't home on bed rest. The investigators were looking into whether Ruiz had filed a bogus workers' compensation claim for injuries he allegedly received after slipping and falling down stairs at police headquarters.

Ruiz, a 12-year veteran, made the claim of an injury days after the NOPD announced he was under investigation for admitting in the Glover trial that he initially lied to the FBI about his knowledge of events surrounding the 2005 death of Glover. Ruiz was called as a government witness in the high-profile case, which snared the convictions of two officers on civil rights charges.

The lawsuit names the city, NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas and three members of the NOPD internal affairs unit -- Michael Harrison, John Miller and Walter Zschiedrich -- as defendants. Ruiz is seeking unspecified damages from the defendants.

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