A U.S. district judge this week released a four-year-old video depicting inmates of the Orleans Parish Prison doing drugs, drinking beer, gambling and brandishing a loaded gun.
The evidence surfaced because of a lawsuit by the Southern Poverty Law Center against the Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman, reports the Daily Mail. The SPLC alleges that inmates — many of them nonviolent offenders who were convicted only of misdemeanors — suffered “brutal and inhumane” treatment due to Gusman’s neglect.
New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu called the video “outrageous,” and said that the “conditions at the time were dangerous and unacceptable.”
The city reached a settlement agreement to reform the prison in December. If it is ratified by a judge, it could cost the city tens of millions of dollars.