MEDIA CONTACT: THE PROMISE OF JUSTICE INITIATIVE, (504) 529-5955
“It’s a good day for justice,” says Ben Cohen, associate counsel for Rodricus Crawford. Today,
the Caddo Parish District Attorney’s Office announced that they will not retry Rodricus
Crawford in connection with the death of his infant son.
Mr. Crawford was wrongfully convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death when his
one-year-old son, Roderius, died in 2012. Roderius was suffering from pneumonia at the time of
his death, and bacteria in his blood indicated that the death was due to sepsis. After his trial,
more evidence was discovered that called the prosecution’s case into serious question.
While so many lawyers, advocates, and supporters stood with Rodricus, the Louisiana Supreme
Court reversed his conviction on November 16, 2016 after hearing lead counsel Cecelia Kappel’s
This case has always been about injustice and the disproportionate use of the death penalty in
Caddo Parish. Justice Breyer recently cited this arbitrary use of capital punishment as a reason
for questioning whether we should have the death penalty at all.
In deciding not to retry Rodricus Crawford, the Caddo Parish District Attorney’s office is
righting this injustice, restoring integrity to their office.
The Promise of Justice Initiative hopes that this allows Rodricus Crawford an opportunity to
grieve, move on with his life and — with help — put this all behind him. We also believe it is a
good time to reconsider how we use the death penalty, so Louisiana can put behind it the time of
vengeance and injustice.