Africk, who has presided over the jail litigation for four years, has been reluctant to micromanage Gusman or intervene in the sheriff’s funding battle with Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration. But he made clear Wednesday that he is entertaining the government’s request that he sideline Gusman.Something has to happen. The conditions at the jail are deplorable and everyone knows it. This doesn't mean there aren't reasons to be skeptical of a motion to remove a citywide elected official my judicial fiat. Gusman has a legitimate point there. His jail sucks but he does have a point about that.
“I’m not waiting around another five years” for change, the judge told one of the sheriff’s attorneys during one spirited exchange.
It's also worth noting that the mayor has more to gain in purely cynical political terms from this action and that his comments aren't necessarily motivated by concern for the inmates either.