Louisiana State Police lieutenant charged in hit and run investigation

Staff Report

Following an investigation into a hit and run incident, Lt. Chad Lacoste was taken into custody the morning of April 8 on charges of malfeasance in office and injuring public records, Louisiana State Police announced.

The investigation and charges stemmed from two reported hit and run crashes in St. Tammany and Orleans parishes in September last year.

According to a news release, the investigation began in September 2021 when Lacoste reported being involved in a crash in his unmarked department vehicle on U.S. Hwy. 90 in Orleans Parish. During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that Lacoste’s department vehicle was involved in a separate crash the day before on Hwy. 22 in St. Tammany Parish.

Through examination of the vehicle damage, electronic evidence, and witness statements, investigators determined that Lacoste intentionally failed to stop at the scene of the initial crash in St. Tammany Parish and falsely reported damage to his vehicle during the second alleged hit and run crash in Orleans Parish.

Lacoste was charged with one count each of malfeasance in office in both St. Tammany and Orleans parishes and one count of injuring public records in Orleans Parish.

In addition to the charges related to the false reporting of the incidents, Lacoste received a summons for hit and run driving and careless operation of a motor vehicle for his role in the St. Tammany Parish crash.

At the onset of the investigation, Lacoste was placed on administrative leave and all law enforcement property was recovered pending the conclusion of the criminal and administrative investigations.

Lacoste has been employed with Louisiana State Police since 2003 and was assigned to the Criminal Investigations Division.

In a statement to Department of Public Safety employees, Colonel Lamar Davis stressed, “Once again, I pledge to support you. I will, likewise, continue to hold each and every one of us accountable for our actions.”