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Officers charged over Katrina body

A jury has charged three current and two former New Orleans police officers in connection with the shooting of a man and burning his body after Hurricane Katrina.

According to earlier published reports, police were using a school as a temporary headquarters on September 2, 2005, when a group of men drove up looking for help for 31-year-old Henry Glover, who had been shot.

One of the men reportedly later told investigators that Glover was still in the back seat when a police officer drove off with his car.

Glover's burned remains later were recovered from the charred car when it turned up near a police station. Prosecutors would not provide details of what they believe happened.

Former officer David Warren was charged with violating Glover's rights by allegedly shooting him to death. Along with a charge of unlawful use of a firearm he faces a possible life sentence and a fine. Warren was immediately arrested and is in federal custody, the Department of Justice said. US Attorney Jim Letten said a federal judge would be asked to order Warren jailed until trial.

Letten also said that under some circumstances, prosecutors can seek a death sentence for a civil rights violation. However, he said the case would require more review before a recommendation to seek the death penalty might be made. Others charged were former Lt. Robert Italiano, Lt. Dwayne Scheuermann, Lt. Travis McCabe and Officer Gregory McRae.

Scheuermann and McRae are charged with obstructing justice and burning Glover's body and the car in which he was found. They also are accused of assaulting residents who tried to help Glover. If convicted, they each face a maximum sentence of 60 years in prison.

Italiano and McCabe are charged with obstruction of justice for their alleged roles in submitting false reports of the incident and lying to investigators. Italiano, if convicted, faces a maximum prison sentence of 25 years. If convicted, McCabe could get 30 years. Following announcement of the indictment, Letten said the five have a duty to the public, "certainly not to kill them, certainly not to destroy evidence."


From Belfast Telegraph