Four siblings sentenced; two for Mother's Day shooting - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Four siblings sentenced; two for Mother's Day shooting

Shawn, Akein Scott (Source: OPSO) Shawn, Akein Scott (Source: OPSO)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

Four siblings who prosecutors said were members of a notorious gang were sentenced Tuesday in federal court on charges that included the May 2013 Mother’s Day shooting during a second line parade.

It was a level of street violence that had locals and people nationwide wondering what was happening in New Orleans. Twenty people were shot and wounded.

The four gang members were sentenced for racketeering, narcotics and violent crimes.

"I'm doing better, I'm doing a lot better. I still have some surgical work ahead of me,” said Deborah Cotton, one of the Mother’s Day shooting victims.  She was in the courtroom as the brothers learned their punishment.

Federal prosecutors they they were members of the Frenchmen-Derbigny gang also known as FnD. Before the judge pronounced their sentences the brothers apologized either themselves, or through legal counsel.

During lengthy comments Judge Ivan Lemelle urged the siblings to find the good within themselves. Still, he criticized their actions and told them to take responsibility.

"I would consider it a terrorist act," he said. "Are you terrorists?"

For the Mother’s Day shooting, Akein Scott received a life sentence and his brother Shawn Scott got 40 years. Both had pleaded guilty. Travis Scott, whom federal prosecutors said was the leader of the FnD gang, received a life sentence for various crimes including gun violence unrelated to the Mother’s Day shooting. Stanley Scott got 40 years for his crimes.

All four defendants pleaded guilty to racketeering, conspiracy and conspiracy to distribute more than one kilogram of heroin.

A family member could be heard uttering “no” as the two life sentences were read.

Though she was shot, Cotton said she had hoped for more lenient sentences.

"To be honest, I'm disappointed, I was hoping for a little more leniency for the young men," she said. "I understand that they had a long history of criminal activity, but I was hoping that, you know, they would be able to spend time in jail, you know, getting right with themselves, and that they would at least be allotted enough time out to, you know, have some semblance of life and to do some positive work in the community.”

"This is a sad day, especially for those four young men," said Edward Buckner, president of the Original Big 7 Social Aide and Pleasure Club that sponsored the second line. "I didn't wish this on them, but this is the point that they brought themselves to. I'm thankful for the justice for all of the victims of this incident.”

Outside the federal courthouse, Buckner had a message for others on a path of crime and violence.

"And I ask that none of the young men - no more, ever, ever again, take it upon them, not thinking, and run into a crowd of people and shoot like that. Sure, it's a terrorist act, sure it's a terrorist act. Please don't do that,” he said.

Cotton believes the community has a responsibility to fight for more programs to rescue at-risk youngsters.

"We allow corruption and the dismantling and siphoning off of resources that are supposed to go toward programs and opportunities for these individuals and we allow it to happen," she said. "We don't raise a ruckus, and so you know when they prey upon us, you know, we raise our fists to the heavens, but we sort of are complicit in that when we don't make their suffering a priority for us.”

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