Former cop sentenced in Katrina killing

April 11, 2012 at 7:17 PM
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WASHINGTON, April 11 (UPI) -- Former New Orleans police officer Ronald Mitchell was sentenced Wednesday to 20 months in prison for lying about a shooting death after Hurricane Katrina.

The Justice Department said in a release Wednesday U.S. District Judge Sarah Vance also ordered Mitchell to complete three years of supervised release following his incarceration.

On Dec. 9, a federal jury found Mitchell guilty of perjury and obstruction of justice for providing "false and misleading information" during a deposition in a lawsuit filed by the family of Danny Brumfield, who Mitchell shot and killed on Convention Center Boulevard a few days after Katrina in the summer of 2005.

Mitchell provided sworn testimony in 2007 indicating his partner stopped their patrol car after Mitchell shot Brumfield. Mitchell also testified he got out of the car and checked Brumfield's vital signs. But evidence at trial showed Mitchell never got out of the car, the Justice Department said.

"Today's sentence brings closure to an incident that occurred during a time when the people of New Orleans needed to rely on their officers," said Thomas E. Perez, assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division. "The department will continue to work with the city on ways to create sustainable reforms within the New Orleans Police Department."

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