New Orleans, La. – One of the unarmed citizens confronted by police broke down in tears as he recalled his escape from injury at the confrontation days after Hurricane Katrina. Leonard Bartholomew IV was 14 years old when he and his family walked across the bridge in search of food. He testified that he ran from officers as they opened fire. He was arrested, and released in a few hours. His parents, sister and cousin were wounded. His cousin's friend was killed. Bartholomew sobbed as he recalled visiting his wounded family at the hospital a week later. Former NOPD officer Kevin Bryan testified he chased Bartholomew after a colleague fired two shots at the boy, and missed. Bryan, who is now a Plaquemines Parish sheriff's deputy, says he slapped the boy in the "heat of the moment" and immediately felt terrible. The defendants maintain they were responding to reports of officers in trouble and were also under fire.
For WWNO, I'm Eileen Fleming.