A video featuring Captain Higgins with the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office has gone viral once again.
Captain Higgins is known as the “Cajun John Wayne.”
His method, which could be considered tough, is what helped drive his popularity.
In a recent video, Higgins is seen directing a warning at the Gremlin Gang, a group of individuals wanted for criminal activity in and around Vermilion Parish.
His words have some in Acadiana praising his approach.
“Thieves are thieves, whether they’re black or white. He’s just calling it like it is. They’re thieves, they’re thugs and I don’t see nothing wrong with it.” Keith Girouard tells KLFY’s Jazmin Thibodeaux.
“I thought it was hilarious, but I do think he sent the right message. I think with people that are that heinous criminals as far as some of the actions they’ve done, I think it sends a strong message,” added David Mouton, Acadiana Resident.
In the video, Higgins refers to the suspects as “animals” and “thugs”, words that are receiving mixed reactions.
“His words were harsh, but at the same time if you’re out committing those types of crimes what do you expect for the public response to be. I also realize that they haven’t been convicted yet, but if they’re instiling this type of fear in the public then somebody has to let these people know that they have to be brought to justice,” said Bethany Thomas an Acadiana Resident.
One organization taking issue with Higgins’ choice of words is the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana.
In a statement, the agency said:
“While we support legal law enforcement and certainly are as concerned as anyone about violence in our neighborhoods, law enforcement officers must be aware of the implications of their public statements. Assuming that what is reported is true, Mr. Higgins has suggested that those he seeks to arrest are subject to execution before trial.”
News Ten reached out to Captain Higgins, but he was unavailable for comment. However, Louisiana State Police who are handling the case did release this statement:
“Louisiana State Police did not participate in the production of the video and Captain Higgins does not speak for state police. However, we do share a mutual concern for the public in bringing the gremlin gang to justice.”