The only person arrested after a gunfight left a bystander dead and nine people hurt on Bourbon Street last year could learn next week whether he can get a complete list of witnesses in the case.
Trung Le was captured days after the June 29 gunfight. He was charged with manslaughter and attempted second-degree murder. But his attorney, Martin Regan, says Le fired in self-defense to save himself and others from another still unidentified gunman.
Regan has been seeking police documents that include identities of all witnesses in the case. A state appeals court ordered the district court to hold a hearing on whether providing the names would compromise witnesses’ safety. On Monday, that hearing was set for April 14, with a ruling planned by April 17.
Le, 21, of Belle Chasse, remains jailed with bond set at $1.5 million. He was arrested July 4 in Mississippi.
Bourbon Street was still busy with tourists wandering its well-known nightspots when the gunfight broke out early on a Sunday morning last summer. Killed was Brittany Thomas, 21, who was visiting from Hammond. Others hurt included visitors from Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida and Australia.
It alarmed tourism officials as well as residents of the Quarter, an area of art galleries, night spots and historic homes in the oldest part of New Orleans, where violent crime that has long plagued parts of the city had not been as big a problem.
The shooting led to criticism of New Orleans officials over the city’s shortage of police officers and has prompted various plans aimed at keeping the Quarter, the city’s historic heart and the center of its tourism economy, safe.
Among the efforts: State Police last month announced a plan to beef up patrols in the Quarter and surrounding areas in partnership with the New Orleans business community. The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau raised $2.5 million to fund the operations.