Sunday, July 27, 2008

Why mention the lap dance?

When I first heard about Derrick Shepherd's arrest, I wondered if he had been set up. After all, Jefferson Parish is known for its cut throat politics, Shepherd has made his share of enemies on his way up the ladder, and his recent legal troubles haven't affected his willingness rock the boat.

Personally, I find it hard to believe that Shepherd was set up because I can't see Newell Normand organizing an elaborate conspiracy against somebody who's already under indictment. To believe any such theory, you'd have to believe that an ex-girlfriend could be bribed or pressured into provoking Shepherd. Well, that's entirely believable, but Shepherd had to react to the provocation -- from a woman he stopped seeing three years ago. Still, I wouldn't be surprised to hear such a conspiracy theory and I'm afraid that the unnecessary overkill of mentioning something that appeared to be a lap dance will make it more believable. I thought that it was uncalled for anyway.

For more background, Oyster provides an excellent analysis.

None of the above is meant as a defense of Derrick Shepherd, but I do find it disturbing that Normand publicly announced what deputies saw when they peered into a private residence.

Because of the timing of the arrest, there will almost certainly be claims that it was politically motivated. I don't think such claims make sense under the circumstances. I certainly think that the way the press conference was handled seemed political, but Normand hasn't been in office long enough to compare his handling of this case to his handling of similar cases.

With more time to think about it, I can't see the "overkill" of mentioning the lap dance at a press conference causing anybody to be more likely to believe any kind of conspiracy theories surrounding Shepherd's arrest.

I can't believe you are playing apologist for this turkey! One of the girls was a "communications director" for some local company. Sounds like she is moving up to lobbiest.

If this guy had an (R) behind his name you'd be thrilled to throw him under the bus. Please don't undermine you otherwise excellent reputation by offering any comfort to this taker.
I'm not defending Shepherd at all, I just don't like the fact that Normand publicly reported what deputies saw what they looked into a private residence. In such cases, i think that a scoundrel's right to privacy is as sacred as a paladin's.

I think that the timing of the arrest will lead Shepherd's supporters to claim a political vendetta, but I can't imagine that such claims will have any credibility.
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