RULING

Katrina Cops Guilty in Shooting Deaths

Five New Orleans police officers have been convicted in the shooting deaths of two civilians in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The shootings occurred on September 4, 2005, one week after the storm. A group of police officers went to the Danziger Bridge after hearing a distress call from a fellow officer who said men were shooting at police. Once the officers arrived at the bridge, they began shooting, killing one person, James Brissette, and injuring four others. Police also chased down two passersby who were running from the shots, eventually killing one of them. Investigators later found that none of the victims were armed. A lawyer for one of the defendants said, “It is a time of disorder, chaos and lawlessness. That doesn’t mean the rules change, but the perception changes.” Four officers were convicted of civil rights violations, and one was convicted in the cover-up.