“Grotesque” Prosecutorial Misconduct Leads to Reversal in Katrina Prosecutions
In a stunning and unprecedented decision, a federal district judge in Louisiana vacated the convictions of five New Orleans police officers who were convicted of killing civilians in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Judge Kurt Engelhardt, in a 129-page opinion, found that the “grotesque” misconduct of several federal prosecutors who posted inflammatory online comments using fictitious names that viciously attacked the New Orleans police department and the individual police officers as “racist,” “delusional,” and “inept” was such flagrant misconduct and so likely to have prejudiced the jury that a new trial was warranted.
United States v. Bowen et al., No. 10-204 (E.D. La. Sept. 17, 2013) at GPO Access.