The head of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Orleans office is under Justice Department review after his outside security company bid to act as monitor of the New Orleans Police Department.
Jimmy Fox III, began moonlighting with his own company, Fox Security Services, last summer, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. His company partnered with KeyPoint Government Solutions on a $9 million bid to serve as the court-appointed monitor required by the July settlement resolution reached by the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the New Orleans police force. The Justice Department oversees the DEA.
“This matter is currently under internal review and I cannot comment further,” Dawn Dearden, a Justice Department spokeswoman, said in a statement to the New Orleans newspaper.
Justice Department rules bar employees from seeking outside employment involving “litigation, investigations, grants or other matters in which the Department of Justice is or represents a party, witness, litigant, investigator or grant-maker,” the Times-Picayune noted.
Fox, 53, has served in the DEA position since 2009 and oversees operations in Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi. He’s been with the Justice Department in some capacity since 1987. Fox did not return a request for comment from the Times-Picayune.
The newspaper reported that Fox launched the business last summer, registering it at his home address, and that it was unclear whether it had done any business beyond bidding on the monitor contract.
Jeff Schlanger, KeyPoint’s president and CEO, told the Times-Picayune that he was not concerned about Fox’s potential conflict of interest.
“Our understanding is that there is nothing inappropriate about him doing that,” Schlanger said. “We think it’s totally ethical and aboveboard. As long as everybody says that it’s OK, we’re fine.”
The NOPD consent decree calls for a court-appointed monitor, who will supervise reforms to the department. The settlement is expected to cost New Orleans about $55 million over the next five years, the Times-Picayune reported, and the city has set aside about $10 million for the monitor.
In the bid for the job, Fox said he would leave the DEA if his company wins the contract.
The New Orleans Police Department consent decree settles a number of patterns of constitutional and ethical breaches by officers. The monitor position has garnered a number of notable bids, including from former FBI Director Louis Freeh and former New York Police Commissioner Howard Safir, the Times-Picayune reported.