NEW ORLEANS -- Among the first people former New Orleans Police Officer David Warren thanked after being acquitted of federal charges in the 2005 deadly shooting of Henry Glover were the jurors.
At a news conference following Wednesday’s verdict, Warren embraced his wife and gave her a kiss. The moment came less than three hours after the jury found Warren not guilty of constitutional rights and weapons violations when he shot Glover days after Hurricane Katrina.
“I am thankful to the jury who did their job so thoroughly and I truly appreciate the work that they put forth,” said Warren.
On the other side of the verdict, members of Glover’s family wept as they expressed their frustration with the verdict.
“What justice? We don’t have justice in this city man,” said Rebecca Glover, an aunt of the victim.
Before the verdict, jurors admitted to Judge Lance Africk that in the 14 hours of deliberation, they appeared to be going in circles, tensions were high and they were having trouble reaching a consensus.
Africk issued what’s called the Allen or “Dynamite” charge, which is used to break deadlocks.
Former U.S. Attorney Harry Rosenberg says that move made a substantial impact.
“It was a surprisingly quick in terms of a verdict. They kept on saying there’s tension in the room, there’s a deadlock in the room. He gave them the Allen charge, bam, within minutes they came back with the unanimous verdict,” said Rosenberg.
This was the second time Warren stood trial for the shooting. In 2010, he was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to 25 years in prison.
A federal appeals court later ordered a new trial stating Warren was unfairly tried alongside four other officers accused of covering up the shooting by burning Glover’s body in a car.
Warren admits to shooting Glover. He testified that he feared for his life and believed Glover was armed when Glover allegedly approached a gate at an Algiers police substation Warren was assigned to guard.
Rosenberg says the fact that the jury this time around heard no testimony about the cover-up changed the dynamic of the trial.
“I wouldn’t say it was the game changer, but it certainly was probably the most important factors in this second trial,” said Rosenberg.
“This was a trial where I was isolated and they were able to look at my actions what my actions were,” said Warren.
To the Glover family, those actions define the meaning of injustice. As for Warren, he said he’s unsure of whether he’ll remain in the New Orleans area. He did say he has no plans to return to law enforcement.