Today marks the 44th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.; ironically, justice was also served today. For many of us who remembered the the story of victims of Hurricane Katrina being shot and killed on Danzinger Bridge as they attempted to seek higher ground, The following news of the sentencing of police officers who took an oath to serve and protect the community is very welcomed:
April 4, 2012 (NEW ORLEANS) – Five former New Orleans police officers were sentenced Wednesday to prison terms ranging from six to 65 years for their roles in deadly shootings of unarmed residents on a bridge after Hurricane Katrina.
Kenneth Bowen, Robert Gisevius, Anthony Villavaso and Robert Faulcon were convicted of firearms charges in the shootings. Retired Sgt. Arthur “Archie” Kaufman, who was assigned to investigate the shootings, was convicted of helping orchestrate the cover-up.
Faulcon received the stiffest sentence of 65 years. Bowen and Gisevius each got 40 years while Villavaso was sentenced to 38 years. Kaufman received the lightest sentence at six years.
A federal jury convicted the officers in August 2011 of civil rights violations in the shootings on the Danziger Bridge and the cover-up.
Police shot six people, killing two, less than a week after the storm’s landfall on Aug. 29, 2005. To make the shootings appear justified, officers conspired to plant a gun, fabricate witnesses and falsify reports.
The case became the centerpiece of the Justice Department’s push to clean up the troubled New Orleans Police Department.
U.S. District Kurt Engelhardt heard hours of testimony earlier in the day from prosecutors, defense attorneys, relatives of shooting victims and the officers.
I’m really happy that these killer cops got what they had coming to them. My only disappointment is that the many racist civilians responsible for the shooting deaths and assaults on folks attempting to escape the flood waters were never indicted. But hey, Karma is a bitch named Katrina.