Some Justice

It's good to see that they don't all get off:

In Hurricane Katrina's chaotic aftermath, police shot six people - killing two - as they crossed a bridge in search of food. For years the case was a shocking symbol of the confusion and violence that swept through the flooded city. On Wednesday it became a mark of shame for the police department.

As victims' relatives watched from the courtroom gallery, a retired lieutenant who supervised the department's probe of the shootings pleaded guilty to orchestrating a cover-up to conceal that police gunned down unarmed civilians.

Michael Lohman, a 21-year veteran of the force, pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to obstruct justice. Prosecutors said Lohman and other unidentified officers conspired to fabricate witness statements, falsify reports of the incident and plant a gun in an attempt to make it appear the killings were justified.

U.S. Attorney Jim Letten said the investigation is continuing and would not say whether higher-ranking officials of the police department might be involved.

Lohman, evidently, drafted several false reports to make the shooting look justified and authorized the planting of a gun.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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