New Orleans mayor announces $13.3m settlement for police killings during Hurricane Katrina

Mayor Mitch Landrieu said the settlements are with 17 plaintiffs

New Orleans mayor announces $13.3m settlement for police killings during Hurricane Katrina

File photo of Mayor Mitch Landrieu. | Image: Picture by Alex Brandon AP/Press Association Images

New Orleans' mayor has announced $13.3 million in settlements of lawsuits over police shootings after Hurricane Katrina.

At a news conference today, Mayor Mitch Landrieu also apologised to the victims' families and said he hopes their forgiveness will help the city find peace in the future.

Landrieu said the settlements are with 17 plaintiffs.

A spokeswoman for the mayor's office says the settlements resolve lawsuits over the deaths of three people who were killed in two separate police shootings after the 2005 hurricane and a fourth person who was fatally beaten by an officer shortly before the storm struck.

A total of 20 New Orleans police officers were charged in a series of Justice Department civil rights investigations following Katrina.

"This is closure for me"

The mother of a teen killed by police in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina says she "wholeheartedly" accepts the mayor's apology for his death.

Sherrel Johnson is the mother of 17-year-old James Brissette, who died in the Sept. 4, 2005, shootings on the Danziger Bridge.

At the news conference, Johnson thanked Landrieu for issuing the apology. She said, "Now this is closure for me."

Johnson was one of several members of the victims' families who attended the news conference.