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Violence, chaos at New Orleans jail after guards fled from Katrina, survivor says

[JURIST] Guards at a New Orleans jail fled their posts after Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] struck, leaving prisoners behind in appalling conditions, according to Australian tourist interviewed [text] for the Sydney Sunday Telegraph. Ashley Macdonald was arrested for being drunk and disorderly and was thrown in jail just before the hurricane hit New Orleans. He described a chaotic situation lasting for four days where inmates were able to obtain or make weapons and two inmates locked in underground cells drowned. According to Macdonald, authorities only came to the rescue of the prisoners who were without food, water, toilets or power after inmates began escaping from the jail once the roof had been ripped off. The Orleans Parish Prison and other local jails were evacuated in the aftermath of the storm, and a temporary detention facility has been set up [JURIST report] at the city's Greyhound bus station. AFP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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