East Baton Rouge Parish Jail, sheriff sued for holding inmate past release date

By Catherine Melancon | Dec 10, 2012

BATON ROUGE – A Baton Rouge man is suing multiple parish entities after he was allegedly held in prison after his ordered release date.

Roger Thomas filed suit against East Baton Rouge Sheriff Sid J. Gautreaux, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Department, Mayor-President of East Baton Rouge Parish Melvin Holden, the Baton Rouge City Police Chief Donald Dewayne White, Baton Rouge Police Department, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections James M. LeBlanc and Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections in the 19th Judicial Court on Nov. 21.

Thomas claims that on July 25, 2010, he was sentenced to six months in the East Baton Rouge Parish Jail. His initial release date would have been between October 2010 and January 2011.

The plaintiff was not released until Nov. 17, 2011, approximately 10 to 13 months after his court ordered release date.

Thomas asserts that during the time of his imprisonment, there was no reasonable excuse or explanation for his detainment. He also asserts he advised the warden, the records department and officers of the EBR parish prison that was he was being held past his release date.

The defendants are accused of wrongful imprisonment and failing to release the plaintiff when his court ordered date arrived.

An unspecified amount in damages is sought for legal fees and for being unlawfully incarcerated.

The plaintiff is represented by James Benton, III of James Benton III, LLC.

The case has been assigned to Division E Judge William A. Morvant.

Case no. 617144.

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