CNN's Article from September 2005 about the Danziger Bridge Incident (scroll down)
7 NOPD Officers were indicted for murder yesterday.
Here's the story BEHIND the story:
Eddie Jordan is in trouble. The public sees him as a bungling idiot. He's the reason why murders walk in this city. His primary political patron (Dollar Bill) is probably heading to jail. Even if Jefferson stays out of jail, he's going to be tied up with his own problems to help out Jordan. He's up for reelection in about 9 months. He needs to rile up his base and convince people to vote for him. How can he do that? Take every resource he can muster and throw it at a hot button issue (The Danziger Bridge Incident).
Anyone notice how the front page of the Times-Pic showed 3 white officers and no others? I'm reliably informed that of the remaining 4 officers, 2 are black and 1 is Vietnamese. Don't know about the last one. Hmmm, might someone be trying to sensationalize the incident to rescue flagging paper sales.
I'm making a prediction: this will end poorly for the city. There is a high probability of this sparking a race riot.
It gets worse. Relations between NOPD and the DA's office were strained as it was. Neither side got along with the other. The NOPD blamed the DA's office for being incapable of putting criminals behind bars. The DA's office blamed NOPD for giving them enough evidence to get convictions. Like I said, the two organizations were exactly on great terms to begin with.
To make matters worse, Jordan started running his mouth.
"We cannot allow our police officers to shoot and kill our citizens without justification like rabid dogs," District Attorney Eddie Jordan said.
Warren Riley, who was initially beloved by street cops when he took over from Compass, but now is now mostly dismissed as a political hack, responded:
Police Superintendent Warren Riley called Jordan's comment was "highly prejudicial and highly undignified."
While this whole mess is going on, there's a massive crime wave taking over the city. NOTHING is going to get done while the DA's office and the cops are at each other's throats. The real losers in this mess are the residents of Orleans Parish. We've got to dodge bullets while this soap opera goes on. I'M FAR LESS CONCERNED ABOUT BULLETS THAT WERE FIRED 16 MONTHS AGO THAN I AM ABOUT THE ONES FLYING OVER MY HEAD THIS INSTANT. Remember, there is no statute of limitations on murder. It's a cold case, so they'll have as much evidence a year from now as they do this year. There are rumors they don't have any evidence as it is, but that's another issue I'll side-step.
I'm hoping that this trial will expose what a bungling idiot Jordan is and lead to his demise as Orleans Parish DA. Unfortunately, here's what I think is far more likely: the merits of the case won't really factor into the decision to acquit the officers. Eddie Jordan will horribly botch the case. Also, he's never convicted anyone who's had decent defense attorneys. I know the reputation of one of the defense lawyers and he won't cede Jordan 1 inch of ground. The officers will walk. The city, which has been on edge ever since Nagin's Chocolate City speech will explode and everything that wasn't flooded will get burnt to the ground.
I want to be clear that I don't have a clue what happened on that bridge. I'm not saying the cops are guilty or innocent. I just think they'll be cleared because of other issues.
I'll tell you what, I don't want to stick around for when the verdict is announced. I'll be on vacation outside Louisiana. Fortunately, that's months from now.