Moreno Says Reassignment of Security Aide is Retaliation from Cantrell

Photo courtesy Helena Moreno Twitter

City Council President Helena Moreno says that Deputy Greg Malveaux – an Orleans Parish deputy sheriff assigned to provide security to the council member since 2017 has been reassigned in what she believes is a political reprisal from Mayor LaToya Cantrell. The reassignment comes just two weeks after Fox 8 and the Metropolitan Crime Commission released reports alleging that Cantrell is living in a city-owned apartment without paying rent.

According to Moreno, Malveaux was reassigned to duty at the Orleans Justice Center after Mayor Cantrell accused him of stalking her and recording surveillance video that Fox 8 used in their investigation of her use of the apartment.

“The accusation is that he has stalked her to provide [Fox 8] with information … which I know for a fact is absolutely not true,” Moreno told Fox 8 on Tuesday. “He would 100 percent not do something like that. He would never go and just surveil the mayor, or follow her around, stalk her. He would have no reason to even do that.”

In a follow-up report Tuesday, Fox 8 clarified that they did not receive any video from Malveaux, nor did he provide any information. Instead, they note that much of the video used in their report came from a French Market Corporation surveillance camera mounted near the door of the Upper Pontalba Apartment. More photos and video used in the report were taken by employees of Fox 8 in pursuit of the story.

The Metropolitan Crime Commission has also stated that none of the surveillance pictures used in its report were provided by Malveaux.

“I think we’re looking at, you know, dirty old-school politics,” MCC president Rafael Goyeneche said. “[Malveaux] wasn’t the target. I believe that the target was the council. The council has asked some tough questions of the mayor, has asked some tough questions of the sheriff. Neither one of them appreciate it. This is a way of getting a message back to them, that there’s going to be a consequence if you begin to hold us accountable in the manner that you have.”

Over the past several months, the city council has become increasingly at odds with Cantrell, questioning her use of city funds to upgrade to first-class flights while traveling overseas and threatening to dock her pay, pushing back on her decision to extend the Wisner Trust, issuing statements asking the administration to “fairly and equitably” enforce laws, and more.

Likewise, the council has asked tough questions of newly-elected sheriff Susan Hutson, particularly around staffing issues at the Orleans Justice Center, but also her lack of transparency and communication around conditions at the jail. They’ve also questioned Hutson’s decision to take 10 officials from her office to a Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association conference in Florida, costing taxpayers $23,000 in the midst of the aforementioned staffing challenges.

“I don’t know why so many people would need to go to this particular conference,” Moreno said shortly after being informed of the trip.

Moreno says if the two officials want to punish her, they should focus on her directly rather than her team members.

“Come at me directly. Come at me,” Moreno said. “Do not come after someone who is a dedicated public servant. Someone who is on my staff, who does not deserve to be accused of wrongdoing when he did absolutely nothing wrong.”

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