Criminal charges skyrocket during Mardi Gras
New Orleans is known for many things. From great culture and food to fantastic music and entertainment, visitors and residents alike can find many activities and events to enjoy within the boundaries of the city. One major New Orleans event that draws thousands to its streets each year is Mardi Gras. Recently, Mardi Gras came to a close and just as the number of visitors to the city during that event increased, so too did the number of arrests made by officers present for the town’s celebration.
Earlier in the month, the annual Mardi Gras festival began and concluded. According to local reports, more than 140 arrests were made by law enforcement officials during the nine day-long celebration. Approximately 50 of those arrests were for felony charges and the rest were for misdemeanors. Police estimate that more than $375,000 worth of drugs were removed from New Orleans streets through the arrests and seizures undertaken during the event’s time period.
State troopers were brought into the city in order to increase the number of law enforcement officials present during the pre-Lent festival. While it is possible that some of the individuals who were arrested and charged with felonies and misdemeanors during Mardi Gras had broken local laws, whenever mass arrests are made there is the chance that innocent people have been wrongly accused of breaking laws.
Each of the individuals that law enforcement officials arrested will have to face his or her criminal charges. Each will have the opportunity to defend him or herself with evidence of innocence to eliminate or mitigate the penalties attached to possible conviction. Those who want support preparing their criminal defenses may always seek the counsel of criminal defense attorneys who practice in the New Orleans metropolitan area.
Source: The Times-Picayune, “State Police and Mardi Gras: 140-plus arrests, 300-plus charges,” Jonathan Bullington, Feb. 16, 2015