State Police Superintendent Colonel Mike Edmonson announced his retirement Wednesday.
“I’m not bigger than State Police and I think that what’s most important is the men and women that make up public safety and the men and women that make up State Police. They need to continue forward. We certainly don’t need any distractions,” he explained.
Colonel Edmonson’s leadership was most recently questioned when it was divulged that four state police officials, sent to San Diego for a conference, made a taxpayer funded road trip to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.
Of that incident Edmonson said “we’ll get to the bottom of anything with regard to any of the travel and those types of things. There are things that need to be changed, rules, procedures, protocols. I’ve already changed some. If discipline needs to be a part of that we’ll certainly do that and we’ll move forward.”
State Police is currently being investigated by the Legislative Auditor as well as the FBI.
First appointed by former Governor Bobby Jindal, Edmonson has served as head of State Police for the past nine years, making him the longest serving Superintendent. His retirement marks the end of a 36 year career.
In a statement released Wednesday, Edmonson explained the Governor never asked him to step down, despite the controversy.
"Colonel Edmonson came to conclusion that it was just right time for him and I think perhaps for the agency and the state for him to retire," said Governor John Bel Edwards on his monthly radio show Wednesday.
Edmonson’s last day as Superintendent will be March 24th. The Governor says over the next few days he’ll identify an interim Superintendent "and while the Interim serves for a period of thirty, forty-five days something like that, I will use that time to select the next permanent Superintendent of State Police."