Home News-Free Bossier schools settles lawsuit with south Louisiana football coach

Bossier schools settles lawsuit with south Louisiana football coach

Bossier Schools has reached a settlement in a 2012 lawsuit involving a south Louisiana football coach.
The Bossier Parish School Board unanimously approved a $25,000 settlement Tuesday for Live Oak High School Coach Barry Musemeche, who was hand-cuffed and removed from the field before a playoff game against Parkway in Bossier City. The Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office will also pay $25,000 to settle Musemeche’s claims against the school resource officers who removed him from the field.
The settlement covers both lawsuits and releases the school system from any liability, according to Jon Guice, the Bossier School Board attorney.
“When Mr. Musemeche filed his suit in Baton Rouge, we complained that it really should have been in Bossier because the incident on the field happened in Bossier,” Guice explained. “The judge agreed and sent part of the case back to Bossier, but retained the part of the case related to allegations involving the Louisiana High School Athletic Association since that was in Baton Rouge. In effect, we had two lawsuits – the one here and one in Baton Rouge.”
Guice said the case was mediated and settled with two of the defendants – Bossier Schools and the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office. He said the settlement cost is a lot less than what it would’ve been to defend the case.

“The hearings would’ve been in Baton Rouge. We would’ve had to take all the witnesses down there and put them in hotels,” Guice said. “The decision was made to settle it. There’s absolutely no liability on the part of Dr. Bourgeois or the school board. The release will acknowledge that we have admitted to no wrongdoing. It’s purely a business decision.”
During 2012 post-season, Live Oak was preparing for their playoff game against Parkway in Bossier City.
According to the lawsuit, there was a miscommunication about when Parkway’s band would play and Musemeche was using the time for his player’s warm-up. 
Musemeche said in a 2012 news report that his team was simply using the time allotted for his school’s band to perform and that Parkway’s itinerary was not compromised in any way.

Live Oak’s band was scheduled to play from 6:35 – 6:45 p.m. He says the band chose to simply play on the sideline and let the football team have that field time. 
The coach also says Parkway’s band wasn’t scheduled to play until 6:45 p.m., yet marched onto the field as Live Oak’s football team warmed up at 6:20 p.m.

Allegedly Parkway’s principal at the time, Dr. Nichole Bourgeois, told him get off the field. When he didn’t,  Musemeche was handcuffed and escorted off the field as spectators and players watched. 
He was eventually released and allowed to coach the game which ended in Live Oak’s losing 36-13.
The LHSAA investigated the incident in 2012 and barred Parkway from hosting playoff games in the 2013 football season.
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Sean Green is managing editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune.


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