October 20, 2022  |  03:14 pm

St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Randy Smith is pleased after the Court of Appeal upheld a lower court’s ruling in favor of the agency in regard to a lawsuit filed by a former employee.

Calvin Lewis, a former captain with the agency, was terminated in May 2017 following an internal affairs investigation which confirmed he had violated agency policy.

In May 2018, Lewis filed suit against Sheriff Smith and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office for wrongful termination.

The Court of Appeal ruled Wednesday (October 19) to uphold the August 2019 ruling made by U.S. District Judge Barry Ashen, that Sheriff Smith’s decision to terminate Lewis was a lawful exercise of his discretion to make personnel decisions that uphold the integrity of his agency. 

“Mr. Lewis was knowingly in violation of St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office policy, and he was thus lawfully terminated,” Sheriff Smith said. “It is my belief that all members of law enforcement must be held to a higher standard to maintain public trust and agency integrity.”