NEW ORLEANS - At the retrial of former New Orleans police officer David Warren, the ex-cop opened his testimony by describing the difficult conditions after Hurricane Katrina, including witnessing the scene where a fellow NOPD officer was shot in the head by a looter.
A couple of days later, patrolling a strip mall on General DeGaulle Avenue in Algiers, Warren said he had his own encounter with looters.
He said fired a warning shot at one man, even though such tactics are a violation of NOPD policy. Later, he yelled at two women to stay away after they tried to make off with looted luggage.
A short time after the encounter with the women, Warren testified that when Henry Glover and another man pulled up in a truck, he thought he saw Glover wielding a handgun. So, perched on a second-floor balcony from 66 feet away, he fired one shot from his high-powered military rifle.
Warren was apologetic from the witness stand, saying he only shot because he feared for his own life. He said he was sorry to Glover's family, but also said he would do the same thing again.
The apology did not sit well with Rebecca Glover, the victim’s aunt.
"You murdered my nephew. In cold blood,” she said during a break in the trial. “And you're going to sit there and play this game like you're a choir boy? I'm appalled at it. You should go back to jail. Number one, you should never have been let out to get a new trial. You should have never been let out."
On cross-examination, government prosecutors chipped away at Warren's testimony. They asked the former officer why he didn't check on the man he shot at? Why he didn't alert other officers that a man with a gun could possibly be on the loose?
And in a tragic twist of fate, the asked why – when Glover's mother called two months later to check on a rumor that her son had been shot – Warren merely directed her to call the 4th district station.
After closing arguments, it appears that that the jury will begin deliberations at some point on Wednesday.
Warren's earlier conviction and 25-year sentence were overturned when the 5th Circuit Court of Appeal ruled that Warren should not have been tried alongside four other officers accused of burning Glover’s body and covering up the crime.