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Kenrard Broussard

Summary of Iberia Parish Misconduct
On May 20, 2010, sheriff’s deputies in Iberia Parish, Louisiana, went to the home of a man named Charlie Ransonet after receiving information about drug activity there.

During a search of the property, deputies discovered a bag containing 300 grams of cocaine, as well as 370 grams of marijuana. They also found equipment used to weigh, pack, and process cocaine. After these items were found, Ransonet asked the deputies if he could call Sheriff Louis Ackal, who was a friend. The deputies agreed, and Ransonet spoke with Ackal by telephone. Ransonet then told the deputies that the drugs belonged to 33-year-old Kenrard Broussard, who was a guidance counselor at a middle school in neighboring Lafayette Parish. They had known each other about five years, and Broussard would later say that he viewed Ransonet as a mentor.

Ransonet promised to help the deputies arrest Broussard, and he called Broussard repeatedly during the next four days, allegedly in an attempt to get him to come and retrieve the drugs. These calls were not recorded.

On May 24, 2010, Broussard agreed to come to Ransonet’s house. He went into a shed, came out holding a bag, and was arrested by sheriff’s deputies. Broussard was charged with drug racketeering and possession of cocaine within 2,000 feet of a school zone.

Deputies later searched Broussard’s house and found no evidence of drug activity. Broussard told deputies that he did not know what was in the bag that Ransonet told him to get.

Broussard’s trial in Iberia Parish District Court began on December 5, 2011. Ransonet and the deputies testified about Broussard’s actions. Broussard did not testify. The jury convicted Broussard of the possession charge and acquitted him of racketeering on December 8, 2011. He later received a sentence of 18 years in prison.

Following his conviction, Broussard asked for a modification of his sentence, claiming it was too harsh for a first-time offender.

The Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed the sentence on April 17, 2013. Separately, on February 21, 2014, Broussard filed a pro se petition for a writ of habeas corpus in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana.

A magistrate judge recommended dismissing the petition on technical grounds on March 5, 2015.

On February 23, 2016, five sheriff’s deputies pled guilty in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana to deprivation of civil rights based on the beatings of inmates at the Iberia Parish jail in 2011. During the next month, four more deputies entered guilty pleas in federal court.

Separately, the federal government indicted and then charged Ackal and his chief deputy, Gerald Savoy, on March 9, 2016, with conspiracy and civil rights violations related to the jail beatings. Savoy pled guilty, but Ackal fought the charges and went to trial in November 2016 in U.S. District Court in Shreveport, Louisiana.

The deputies, several of whom were involved with Broussard’s arrest, appeared as the government’s key witnesses.

Broussard, represented by Harry Daniels, filed a motion for a new trial on April 6, 2016, arguing that the evidence of the deputies’ misconduct was undisclosed impeachment evidence that would have called their credibility into question. “Broussard was convicted on the testimony of documented liars,” the motion said.

Prosecutors with the Iberia Parish District Attorney’s Office did not oppose Broussard’s motion, which a judge granted on April 26, 2016. The charge was dismissed that same day, and Broussard was released from prison.

– Ken Otterbourg

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Posting Date: 2/21/2023
Last Updated: 2/21/2023
Most Serious Crime:Drug Possession or Sale
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:2010
Sentence:18 years
Age at the date of reported crime:33
Contributing Factors:Perjury or False Accusation, Official Misconduct
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No