New Orleans To Pay $13.3 Million Over Hurricane Katrina Police Killings

The city has agreed to settle with 17 plaintiffs over police killings and injuries in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, officials announced Monday.

New Orleans has agreed to pay $13.3 million to settle civil rights lawsuits stemming from multiple fatal police shootings and other alleged abuses in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

The city settled with 17 plaintiffs that included families of people killed or injured by police, said New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu.

"We are going to change as a people and we are going to change as a city because we choose to," Landrieu said at a news conference.

The cases included the New Orleans police shooting of two unarmed civilians who were trying to cross the Danziger Bridge to get help. In April, five former New Orleans police officers pleaded guilty in the shootings.

In total, 20 police officers were charged by the US Department of Justice after the agency launched a civil rights investigation.

At least 1,245 people died in the hurricane and subsequent floods in 2005, decimating the city while stranding thousands of residents.

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