Protesters demand justice for Breonna Taylor

Protesters+demand+justice+for+Breonna+Taylor+in+the+streets+of+Brooklyn%2C+New+York.

Black Lives (Breonna Taylor) Matter(s) Protest- Brooklyn, NY / Informed Images / Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0

Protesters demand justice for Breonna Taylor in the streets of Brooklyn, New York.

Outrage over the decision not to indict any of the Louisville police officers that killed Breonna Taylor in her own home has sparked protests across the U.S. Many people have taken to the streets to demand justice for Taylor, and the end of police brutality.

Taylor was an EMT and nurse and died after suffering five fatal gunshot wounds in her own home. 

The Louisville Metro Police Department filed a request for a “no-knock” search warrant for Taylor’s home that she shared with her boyfriend. 

Jefferson County Circuit Court judge allowed for search warrants for locations linked to Taylor’s ex-boyfriend, a convicted felon suspected of supplying a local drug house.

Officers used a battering ram to break in the door of Taylor’s house on Mar. 13, and after Talor and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker III, asked who was at the door, he fired one shot that landed in Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly’s leg. 

The other two officers, Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankison returned fire throughout the home, firing many shots, five of which hit Taylor.

“The first time I saw it on the news, I was shocked. I researched more about it and went into depth and saw that CNN had posted an article about it almost two months after the shooting had occurred,” said Nadine Lahlouh, a junior at Carlmont.

Almost two months later, on May 21, the FBI’s Louisville office announced they were opening an investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death. Four days later, George Floyd was killed and brought attention to police killings and contributing to the Black Lives Matter movement’s resurgence and protests across the United States.

In June, the city of Louisville took dramatic action. The city passed a ban on “no-knock” warrants like the one police had obtained before entering Taylor’s home and dubbed it Breonna’s Law. The legislation also requires police to wear body cameras while executing search warrants, according to CBS News

“It is absolutely necessary that they passed the act. I believe legislation should have passed it sooner than they did. Hopefully, this law will help reduce the number of police shootings and police brutality,” sophomore Atharva Abhyankar said.

The consequences the three officers received varied and has caused a lot of debate. 

Hankison was dismissed from the police force after investigators found he had “blindly fired ten rounds” during the raid, according to his termination letter. Hankison was indicted on three charges of wanton endangerment in the first degree. 

Mattingly and Cosgrove were reassigned to administrative duties according to BBC News. These officers were not charged.

“I believe that the consequences the officers received were justified. Cameron and Mattingly should have been fired instead of being reassigned. What they did was awful,” Lucas Mclaren said, a junior at Carlmont. 

On Saturday 26, 2020, protesters took to the streets from coast to coast, demanding justice for Taylor after the decision not to charge the officers.

“The killing of Floyd and Taylor finally shed light on police violence. It has happened for way too long, and hopefully, we’ll finally see some change,” Abhyankar said.

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