Five former New Orleans police officers have been sentenced to prison terms ranging from six to 65 years for their roles in deadly shootings of unarmed residents in the chaotic days after Hurricane Katrina.
The presiding judge lashed out at prosecutors for two hours on Wednesday on their handling of the case in which police shot six people at a bridge on September 4, 2005, killing two, less than a week after Katrina made landfall.
To make the shootings appear justified, officers conspired to plant a gun, fabricate witnesses and falsify reports. The case became the centerpiece of the US Justice Department's push to clean up the troubled New Orleans Police Department.
Kenneth Bowen, Robert Gisevius, Anthony Villavaso and Robert Faulcon were convicted of federal firearms charges that carried mandatory minimum prison sentences of at least 35 years. Retired officer Arthur Kaufman, who was assigned to investigate the shootings, was convicted of helping orchestrate the cover-up.
Better late than never I suppose.