New Orleans Police Officers Sentenced in Bridge Shootings
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Five former New Orleans police officers have been sentenced to prison terms ranging from six to 65 years years for their roles in the deadly shootings of unarmed residents on a bridge after Hurricane Katrina.
A federal jury convicted the officers in August of civil rights violations in the shootings on the Danziger Bridge and a 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 Wednesday from prosecutors, defense attorneys, relatives of shooting victims and the officers before sentencing.
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