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SFD Capt. Derrick Harris makes first court appearance - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

SFD Capt. Derrick Harris makes first court appearance

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SFD Capt. Derrick Harris arrives at Caddo Parish Courthouse SFD Capt. Derrick Harris arrives at Caddo Parish Courthouse

Shreveport Fire Capt. Derrick Harris, 50, arrived at the Caddo Parish Court House Tuesday morning ahead of his 9:30 court appearance to obtain council.

Although he only spent a couple of minutes before Judge Ramona Emanuel, in that time Harris named John Settle as his lawyer and set up the next court appearance- arraignment on August 28.

Settle said he is determined to clear his client's name, return his life to normal and prevent Harris from becoming a fall guy.

"Needless to say, his life has been turned upside down and we're trying to get his life back together," Settle says.

Derrick Harris remains silent about the allegations that he bought a prostitute for a mentally disable man and forced him to have sex with her while he and others watched.

Settle acknowledges there is a long relationship between his client, other SFD firefighters and the alleged victims. Settle, however, says it is a friendly relationship and that the firefighters "adopted" the men, even buying one a trip to Disney World. Settles says he believes that city hall is trying to turn his client into their fall man.

"We're going to make sure that justice is done in the courthouse, and it's not done at city hall," Settle says.

Fire engineer Jason Vaughan enlisted Stephen Glassel to be his lawyer Friday, August 2- hours before Harris' arrest.

Glassel declined an on camera interview this early in what is sure to be a lengthy process, but he did question why Vaughan's arrest came a week and a half after Harris'. Settle says his client has been treated differently from the beginning.

"If you'll look at the timeline, he was arrested first," Settle says. "He spent a long time in jail, and then we had these cases kind of coming along and arrests. Generally- in a case of this nature- they all get together, they work it out, and they have one mass arrest, and handle everything at one time."

Although he has not been charged with any criminal offenses, Shreveport Fire Chief Craig Mulford has signed Paul Carmouche, a former Caddo Parish District Attorney, to his defense.

Carmouche says Mulford came to him for two reasons. The first is a subpoena from the Caddo District Attorney's Office requiring internal affairs records. Carmouche says his client is also concerned about the claims circulating that Mulford impeded federal investigators from looking into the dealings at Station 8 on Velva Street.

"I get the impression that this may be getting blown out of proportion to what the true facts with actually be when they come out," Carmouche said of the media reaction to the allegations. "I'm not saying there weren't some poor decisions made by people involved in this, but I don't think when the dust is settled... I think we're going to see that this is not nearly as serious as some people believe it is."

Both Carmouche and Settle said in interviews that this story will likely play out in court.

Shreveport police say the investigation is ongoing and more arrests are possible.

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