Posted on August 31, 2021

New Orleans Is Hit by Looting in Wake of Hurricane Ida

Ariel Zilber and Brian Stieglitz, Daily Mail August 30, 2021

Louisiana residents have reported cases of alleged looting in the wake of Hurricane Ida amid fears crime could spiral in New Orleans and other cities after energy suppliers warned that power will be out for at least three weeks as utility crews work to restore more than 2,000 miles of downed energy lines across the state.

New Orleans’ mayor also announced that the death toll from the storm has officially risen to two after a driver drowned in their vehicle in the city. On Sunday, a 60-year-old man died when a tree fell on a home just outside Baton Rouge. Authorities have not released any information about the identities of the victims.


Accuweather’s Dr. Joel N. Myers said on Monday that the total economic damage caused by Ida will likely fall between $70billion and $80billion.


Ida made landfall in Louisiana on Sunday, becoming the fifth most powerful hurricane to strike the United States.

A group of men were caught by a drone camera trying to rob an ATM machine in the scorched remains of a market in the New Orleans neighborhood of St. Claude.

In another incident, witnesses used their cell phone to record several people looting a store in New Orleans East.

Looters often take advantage of disasters like Ida and New Orleans is all too familiar with this as it became a hotbed of criminal activity in the wake of Hurricane Katrina 16 years ago.

However, Mayor LaToya Cantrell said at a press conference Monday that the city is cracking down on looting and all offenders will be charged with a state felony.

She said, ‘My directive has been very clear: lock ’em up. We will not tolerate and we have not tolerated it.’

Police Chief Shaun Ferguson added that the department deployed a group of ‘anti-looting’ officers and is working with the Louisiana National Guard to protect businesses from looters.

Cantrell noted that looting is nowhere near as bad as it may seem, stating, ‘there is no widespread looting going on in the city of New Orleans. What we do have that’s widespread are residents who are being neighbors, who are understand and exhibiting the spirit of humility, of empathy, who are cleaning up their lawns and who are servicing their community. That’s widespread in the city of New Orleans, that’s who we are.’

Nevertheless, the city has already made ‘several arrests’ involving looters, Ferguson said and urged residents to report looting when they see it.

‘It is also incumbent upon the community to lean in and lean forward and say this is not the time,’ he said. ‘Right now we are going through some trying times and we need to really pull ourselves through this together.’

So far, at least one person was taken into custody for looting the Dollar General in New Orleans East.

CBS News reporter Beau Zimmer posted the photos from the scene on Twitter, which revealed the interior of the trashed store and the parking lot outside littered by overturned shopping carts with merchandise spilling out of them.

It is not clear if the pair from the drone video were apprehended or got away with any cash from the ATM machine they are seen in the footage trying to pry open.

One of the men in the video is seen toying with the machine. Another stands beside him and sees the drone before turning his back and leaving the destroyed business.

The video, which was posted to Twitter by WXChasing (Brandon Clement), has yielded 19,100 views and is captioned, ‘The moment looters realize a drone is watching them try to break into an ATM [machine] in burned down St. Claude market in the lower 9th ward.’

The New Orleans Fire Department also posted several photos of the market in St. Claude after it had burned down in the aftermath of the storm, but did not explain what caused the fire and if the business owners were there when it happened.