NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - The city on Monday announced that a multimillion-dollar settlement will be paid to the families of victims who were killed in police shootings following hurricane Katrina and in a deadly beating that happened before the storm.
The mayor said the city will pay a total of $13.3 million to the families.
Mayor Mitch Landrieu offered an apology to the survivors who stood by him at a news conference held at Xavier University to announce the settlement. The mayor said this brings closure to a dark time in New Orleans history, and city leaders pledge to make sure it never happens again.
The mayor referred to the high-profile Danziger Bridge case, where five former NOPD officers were accused of shooting and killing 17-year-old James Brisette and 40-year-old Ronald Madison, who was mentally disabled on the bridge in the days after Katrina. He also acknowledged the Henry Glover case, where NOPD officers were accused of shooting and killing of Glover and then burning his body following the storm. There was also the beating death of handyman Raymond Robair. In that case, two former NOPD officers received prison sentences in connection with his death that happened before Katrina.
"And today I'd like to say thank you Mayor Landrieu and the City of New Orleans for this open apology to me and my family," said Sherrell Johnson, Brissette's mother. "We accept it wholeheartedly. Again, I'd like to say thank you, Mayor Landrieu. You've made my day, and now this is closure for me and I can go forth feeling better because I know the old New Orleans does not exist anymore. "
The city will pay the $13.3 million to 17 plaintiffs over the next two years.