Attorney General Merrick Garland announced on Thursday (August 4) that four current and former Louisville police officers who were involved in the deadly raid on Breonna Taylor’s home have been charged with civil rights violations and other counts related to the tragic incident.
These officers include detectives who worked on the search warrant and the ex-officer who is accused of firing blindly into Breonna Taylor’s home.
“Breonna Taylor should be alive today,” Garland declared on Thursday.
The breaking news of the day sent Twitter into a frenzy:
These allegations are the very first federal charges brought against any of the law enforcement officials who were engaged in the bungled operation that took Breonna’s life.
According to Garland, the federal authorities have charged the four with civil rights charges along with unlawful conspiracies, unconstitutional use of force, and obstruction.
Former Detective Joshua Jaynes, Detective Kelly Goodlett, and Sgt. Kyle Meany were charged with submitting a false affidavit to search Taylor’s home ahead of the raid, before working together to invent a “false cover story in an attempt to escape responsibility for their roles in preparing the warrant affidavit that contained false information,” according to court documents.
Former detective Brett Hankison is accused of having “willfully used unconstitutionally excessive force … when he fired his service weapon into Taylor’s apartment through a covered window and covered glass door.”
Hankison is charged with depriving Taylor and a guest in her home “of their constitutional rights by firing shots through a bedroom window that was covered with blinds and a blackout curtain,” the U.S. Department of Justice said.
The charges are independent from the Department of Justice’s current inquiry into whether the Louisville Metro Police Department has “patterns and practices” of violating citizens’ rights, according to Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke.
Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mother, said that she has been waiting 874 days for these federal charges to be brought and has beaten “everything sent to break” her.
Her daughter’s death has taken her to a “place that we can’t even imagine,” she added.
“Every day’s been March 13 for me,” Palmer said.
March 13, 2020 is the day Breonna Taylor was killed by police in 2020.
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