U.S. Department of Justice
April 11, 2012
Office of Public Affairs
(202) 514-2007/TDD (202) 514-1888
New Orleans Police Officer Sentenced for Perjury and Obstruction of Justice
WASHINGTON—A former New Orleans Police Department officer Ronald Mitchell was sentenced today to 20 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release by U.S. District Judge Sarah Vance for lying under oath and obstructing justice.
On December 9, 2011, a federal jury found Mitchell guilty of committing perjury and obstructing justice for providing false and misleading information during a civil deposition in connection to a lawsuit filed by the family of Danny Brumfield. According to the evidence presented at trial, Mitchell, while seated in the passenger’s seat of a patrol car, shot and killed Danny Brumfield on Convention Center Boulevard in New Orleans a few days after Hurricane Katrina. In 2007, Mitchell gave sworn deposition testimony stating that his partner stopped the patrol car after Mitchell shot Brumfield. Mitchell’s deposition also stated that after he shot Brumfield, Mitchell exited the patrol car and checked Brumfield’s vital signs. The evidence presented at trial showed that Mitchell never exited the patrol car after he shot Brumfield and did not check his vital signs.
“Today’s sentence brings closure to an incident that occurred during a time when the people of New Orleans needed to rely on their officers,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The department will continue to work with the city on ways to create sustainable reforms within the New Orleans Police Department.”
This case was investigated by the New Orleans Division of the FBI and was prosecuted by former Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Magner, and Civil Rights Division Trial Attorney Christopher Lomax.