THE TIMES-PICAYUNE THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2005 5
HURRIC ANE KATRIN A AFTERMATH
‘WE WILL DO WHAT IT TAKES
TO RESTORE LAW AND ORDER’
Forces called in to curb widespread looting
By Ed Anderson, and SWAT units will be working were forced to prioritize their truck that fled the scene, but he concern, said Arthur Wiese Jr., Meanwhile, Department of
Michael Perlstein with the New Orleans Police overwhelmed enforcement effort. lost the truck amid fallen trees. vice president of corporate com- Public Safety and Corrections
and Robert Travis Scott Department to reduce looting, For instance, Winn-Dixie s Upon surveying the thefts, the munications for Entergy. Secretary Richard Stalder said that
Capital bureau which New Orleans City Council Riverside Market Place on officer said the most conspicuous We can t send workers out and because of high water, lack of air
Hoping to curb widespread President Oliver Thomas called Tchoupitoulas Street was breached missing items were all the put their lives in jeopardy, he said conditioning, food shortage and
looting, New Orleans law enforce- widespread and major looting. in the morning by foragers who weapons from the store s knife late Wednesday afternoon from lack of potable water, his office
ment is getting an infusion of 200 They are looting houses and broke through a metal security case. the one of the company s storm and local police have moved all
State Police troopers and 350 businesses, he said. Gangs are door. Eight police officers in Similar scenes were reported command centers in Jackson, 1,112 inmates from the Jefferson
Louisiana National Guard troops, sticking people up in their homes. marked cruisers made it to the across the storm-ravaged region. Miss. Once we have facilities Parish Correctional Center to state
Another 500 Guard troops may be They are looting gun stores; they parking lot by noon, but they had a In Gretna, 50 people have been back operating, we have to know prisons or parish jails with avail-
deployed to the area in the coming are stealing guns out of Wal- more pressing problem than peo- arrested; in unincorporated that our workers can get to work able beds in other parts of the
weeks. Marts. ple walking off with food and Jefferson, 30 have been arrested. safely. state.
Gov. Kathleen Blanco also sent Besides State Police, 350 liquor. State Rep. Arthur Morrell, D-
We are as alarmed as anyone Department spokeswoman Pam
a strong message to scofflaws who Louisiana National Guard troops The officers were rushing to a New Orleans, said he has seen
over the chaos in the city. It is a Laborde said the convoy of buses
loot guns, merchandise and food will be deployed to New Orleans break-in next door at the Sports some people looting for sur-
to help patrol the streets, said Authority, desperate to secure the vival by taking food from stores. very serious question, Wiese said. made the trip to St. Gabriel s Hunt
from New Orleans area stores in Attorney General Charles Foti, Correctional Center for processing
the aftermath of Hurricane Guard spokesman Lt. Kevin store s stockpile of guns and He said one store even invited
Cowan. ammunition. neighborhood residents to take a former criminal sheriff in New on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Katrina: You will be arrested and Orleans, said his office and New Stalder said more than 2,100 of
prosecuted. Another 500 troops may be I think we ran them off before food before it spoiled.
deployed to New Orleans in the they got any of it, said the com- But others, he said, are stealing Orleans officials are trying to set the 5,100 inmates were moved
We will do what it takes to up a temporary detention center from the Orleans Parish Prison by
restore law and order, Blanco next two days to work with police manding officer at the scene. The items such as electronic appli-
in the area, Cowan said. police secured the store with ances, tennis shoes and furniture. in New Orleans to house and late Wednesday and another 3,000
said during a news conference process those arrested for looting would be moved to other state and
Wednesday afternoon. We will He said some consideration is heavy plywood before moving on They don t need that for sur-
also being given to deploying to other emergencies. vival, he said. They can t take and other crimes. parish jails in the next 36 to 48
not put up with petty criminals
some of the Guard soldiers return- At about 2 p.m., the officers home the appliances and plug Until that is built, State Police hours.
doing their business. We want to
ing from Iraq to work hurricane rushed back to disrupt a second them in; there is no electricity. officials said those arrested will be It is being measured in hours,
take these people off the streets.
disaster duty in New Orleans. break-in at the sporting goods The atmosphere of near anar- sent to Fort Polk. not days, Stalder said.
State Police spokeswoman Sgt.
Cathy Flinchum said 200 state Looting in New Orleans was so store. An officer in a squad car chy in New Orleans is another Officials could not estimate the
troopers assigned to riot control widespread Wednesday that police tried to chase a Bell South utility major number of looters.
REFUGEES FIND DOME
AN INTOLERABLE REFUGE
t s worse than being in prison in there
By Gordon Russell Safety concerns a show of sympathy.
Staff writer Ray Nagin should
Others were leaving
The Superdome resem- because of concerns about come speak to these peo-
bled a scene from the their safety. The Dome sit- ple, said Julie Joseph, who
Apocalypse on Wednesday uation had deteriorated huddled in a bleacher seat
morning, with thousands of noticeably from earlier with friends who nodded in
refugees trapped in a hell- days, as new swarms of agreement. To be the
ish environment of short refugees and rescuees mayor he should have
tempers, unbearable heat arrived. On Wednesday come in here. We got peo-
and the overwhelming morning, running water to ple who lost family mem-
stench of human waste. the building was lost as it bers.
Evacuees told horror was throughout the city Even some of the police
stories of assaults and the making the already over- officers and military mem-
apparent suicide of a man whelming bathrooms bers assigned to the Dome
who leapt from a balcony. downright noxious. none of whom wanted to
Although none of the As people stood in long speak on the record said
accounts could be con- lines to receive rations of they felt the situation was
firmed by authorities, water and pre-made mili- being poorly managed, if it
many refugees offered tary meals, they put their was being managed at all.
remarkably similar shirts over their noses to This plan was no plan,
accounts. block out the odor. Once said one cop, shaking his
A sense of desperation word got around that some head.
overtook those stuck at the areas of the city near the The hellish confines
Dome as they waited in Mississippi River remained stood in stark contrast to
vain to hear where they dry, some refugees decided those of people nearby in
might be taken next. Later to leave. the restricted-access New
in the day, authorities t
I s chaotic, and it Orleans Centre and Hyatt
announced a plan to begin smells, said barbershop Hotel, where those who
bringing ill evacuees to the owner Ted Mitchell, who could get in lounged in rel-
Ernest N. Morial after three nights in the ative comfort.
Convention Center, from Dome was leaving and A few blocks farther
which they would be taken contemplating walking away, guests were being
by bus to shelters and hos- back to his flooded home fed foie gras and rack of
pitals elsewhere. near Canal and Broad lamb for dinner, according
The Houston streets. It s worse than the to a photographer who
Astrodome was preparing Depression. That place is stayed there, while the
to take in thousands more, not fit for people to be liv- masses, most of them poor,
who were expected to start ing in. huddled in the Dome.
arriving by busloads this They re treating people While many were angry
morning. like prisoners in there, at what they perceived as
Throughout the day, said Shelton Alexander as third-class treatment, oth-
frustration boiled over into he left the Dome for the ers were simply glad to be
anger and fear. Occasional thigh-high waters of alive or perhaps too
skirmishes broke out out- Poydras Street. It s so hot
numbed by tragedy to feel
side the building, where in there, and people are s
anything like anger.
people sought shade from a ting on the floors.
I m sorry for the ones
brutally hot sun under the Tensions ran high
between the Louisiana not here today, said Byron
Dome s narrow eave.
They re treating us like National Guardsmen Price of Bywater, who
crap, said Tina Wilson of assigned to secure the came to the Dome just
Mid-City as others chimed building and those they before the storm hit. But
in with amens. They have were protecting, with some thank God for the soldiers
us living like not even people upset over what and police protecting us.
pigs. they felt was an inability to t
I s going to be all right.
Cleo Fisher of the keep order and others say- Delia Crumby, crouched
Bywater sat atop a concrete ing they felt soldiers were by a wall outside the
cylinder in waist-deep too brusque. Dome, said was rescued by
water on Poydras just out- Those crowded outside a Louisiana Wildlife &
side the Dome. Fisher, 86, the Dome along a security Fisheries boat after her
said he left because he did- line jeered and yelled at a Lower 9th Ward home
n t have heart medications guardsman after he shoved flooded. She and her broth-
he wouldn t survive with- a man to the pavement who er, who had recently had a
out. had ignored his order not to stroke, holed up in the attic
Medical technicians go back in without clearing after the levee breach.
were unsympathetic, he a checkpoint accessible Her brother didn t make
said, leaving him no choice only by the deep water on it.
but to try to get out and get Poydras Street. I don t really know
help. He wasn t faring well what he died from, she
outside either in fact, he said. He just died up in the
was rescued from drown- Call for attic with me.
ing by two passers-by after leadership She pleaded with an
falling off the pier he sat Evacuees also vented outsider to call her sister in
on, he said. their anger at city officials, New Jersey to tell her that
I s worse than being in
t in particular Mayor Ray she was all right. The news
STAFF PHOTOS BY TED JACKSON prison in there, he said. Nagin, who many said they about her brother would
SUPERDOME: At first glance, it might be a Saints game being played by spotlight. Unfortunately, the scene is of Hurricane Katrina They don t have nothing felt should have put in an have to wait.
evacuees trying to get by in the Superdome, which has a large hole in its roof. for me. appearance at the Dome in