No Officers Charged In Breonna Taylor’s Killing; 1 Officer Indicted For Wanton Endangerment
How Was Breonna Taylor Killed?
Breonna Taylor and her boyfriend Kenneth Walker were sleeping in their beds on March 13. Shortly after midnight, the couple heard a banging noise coming from their door. Walker states that he and Taylor called out to see who was at their door. When police officers broke through the door, Walker opened fire with his gun, believing that intruders had entered their home. Police did not alert the couple before breaking down the door due to a no-knock warrant. Police returned fire, and Taylor was hit with five shots. One sergeant was shot in the thigh. Another officer fired 10 shots blindly into the apartment.
Walker said that several minutes after being shot, Taylor was coughing up blood and was struggling to breathe. Louisville Police must have an ambulance nearby when conducting a raid. They had one, but sent it away an hour before the raid happened, which goes against the usual practice. It took 20 minutes before Taylor received medical assistance. Walker had dialed 911 asking for medical aid and he still did not understand that police were in their home for a drug raid.
Police believed that a potential drug seller was leaving his packages in Taylor’s apartment. Taylor had been dating the man intermittently for several years. Taylor’s family stated that she cut ties with him recently. However, police suspected that the drugs were being sold at a house far from Taylor’s residence. Jamarcus Glover was the suspect police believed was leaving packages at Taylor’s residence. Glover claims that Breonna Taylor had no involvement with selling drugs.
Breonna Taylor died from her injuries. She was an E.M.T. and there were no drugs in her apartment.
Justice For Breonna Taylor?
No charges were filed in her killing. One officer was indicted for recklessly firing into the neighbors’ apartment.
Her name was Breonna Taylor, and for six months, her name has been at the forefront in the anti-racist movement.
Many have said the name “Breonna Taylor,” from well-known NBA sports figures to Congress members to young anti-racist protesters standing on street corners. It has become a rallying cry, with protestors crying, “Say her name! Breonna Taylor!”
Anti-racist activists are marching and chanting her name. They are demanding an end to police brutality and greater police accountability. And consequently fulfilling Tamika Palmer (Breonna Taylor’s mother) sincere wish that her daughter’s name not be forgotten. For six months, activists have said, “Today is a good day to arrest the cops that killed Breonna Taylor.”
Today, a beleaguered community received the answer to its calls for justice.
No officers charged in the death of Breonna Taylor.
Kentucky Grand Jury: No Officers Charged Directly With Breonna Taylor’s Death
One officer has been indicted for firing into the neighbor’s apartment. Former Officer Brett Hankison, the only officer charged, was indicted on three charges of 1st Degree Wanton Endangerment, a Class D Felony, punishable by 1 to 5 years in prison.
Read a copy of the indictment Here.
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron Announced One Of Three Police Officers Would Face Charges
In televised remarks made by AG Cameron, September 23, 2020, Cameron urged a peaceful response from the community and explained the decision of the Grand Jury.
“After hearing the evidence from our team of prosecutors, the Grand Jury voted to return an indictment against DetectiveHankison for three counts of wanton endangerment for wantonly placing the three individuals in apartment three in danger of serious physical injury or death. The charge of Wanton Endangerment in the first degree is a Class D Felony, and, if found guilty, the accused can serve up to five years for each count. Kentucky law states that ‘a person is guilty of wanton endangerment in the first degree when, under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life, he wantonly engages in conduct which creates a substantial danger of death or serious physicalinjury to another person.’ My office is prepared to prove these charges at trial. However, it’s important to note that he is presumed innocent until proven guilty.”
Kentucky AG Cameron Leans On Logic Over Emotion
“Every person has an idea of what they think justice is. My role as special prosecutor in this case is to set aside everything in pursuit of the truth. My job is to present the facts to theGrand Jury, and the Grand Jury then applies those facts to the law. If we simply act on emotion or outrage, there is no justice.
“Mob justice is not justice. Justice sought by violence is not justice. It just becomes revenge. And in our system, criminal justice isn’t the quest for revenge. It’s the quest for truth, evidence, and facts—and the use of that truth as we fairly apply our laws.
“Our reaction to the truth today says what kind of society we want to be. Do we really want the truth, or do we want a truth that fits our narrative? Do we want the facts, or are we content to blindly accept our own version of events? We as a community must make this decision.”
“We Will Never Stop Saying Her Name.”
Here is the official statement released by Attorney Ben Crump (via Twitter)
“The rally cries that have echoed throughout the nation have been once again ignored by a justice system that claims to serve the people. But when a justice system only acts in the best interest of the most privileged and whitest among us, it has failed.
“For the sake of Breonna Taylor, for the sake of justice, and for the sake of all Americans, law enforcement agencies and their representatives throughout the country need to take a long, hard look in the mirror.
“Is this who you are?
“Is this the example you want to set for the rest of the world and for future generations?
“Today’s news falls far short of what constitutes justice. But by no means does it define this movement or this moment in our history.
“The Grand Jury may have denied Breonna justice, but this decision cannot take away her legacy. As a loving, vibrant young black woman who served on the front lines in the midst of a devastating pandemic. It is our hope that through the FBI’s investigation, we will finally get the justice for Breonna. Justice that the Grand Jury refused her today.
“Make no mistake, we will keep fighting this fight in Breonna’s memory, and we will never stop saying her name.”