This is the hardest post I’ve ever authored due to the subject matter of controversial lawyer and occasional Slabbed commenter Ashton O’Dwyer and his Katrina experience which is frankly incredible. Like Bellesouth before him Ashton has been judged harshly by the blogosphere. Unlike Belle, Ashton has brought a good bit cyber-ire on himself through the use of racially charged words to describe people of color such as US Judge Ivan Lemelle.
I’ve found that those not from the heart of the GO Zone (for the most part) do not completely appreciate the mental trauma inflicted by the sudden changes brought by Katrina. Everyone was impacted, including those that grew up and moved away as the familar was lost forever and the connection to the community completely shattered by the upheaval. In my own circle of friends including those from my childhood I’ve found the ability to cope with these stresses varied greatly and depended on a number of circumstances. And a few, like Wilford Asher of Waveland simply snapped.
And it is with that perspective that we need to backtrack in time to September 2005 when Ashton O’Dwyer’s loss was compounded and then some. Before I link the legal docs let’s visit with James Gill at the Times Picayune who wrote about this a few months back:
O’Dwyer blamed his maltreatment — as he does many of his woes — on a conspiracy of powerful public officials. This time, however, it did not require an overheated imagination to conclude that he had been singled out for some rough justice.
And it was pretty rough. O’Dwyer was sitting in his driveway around midnight shortly after Katrina drinking a glass of wine, when the cops materialized. He was, even by his own account, somewhat provocative and was hauled off to the temporary hoosegow at the Union Passenger Terminal.
There he was locked in a metal cage and repeatedly pepper sprayed and shot with beanbag rounds. Released after 16 hours, he was never charged with a crime. Photographs of his wounds support his brutality claims. Continue reading “Slabbed kisses the Blarney Stone and tells the story of Katrina’s Nutty Irishman”