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Science And Nature

Justice for Breonna? Louisville cops charged by DOJ.

Louisville, Ky.

The U.S. Justice Department announced civil rights charges Thursday against four Louisville cops on the drug raid that resulted in the death of Breonna Taylor, a Black woman whose fatal shooting contributed to the racial justice protests that rocked america in the spring and summer of 2020.

The charges are another effort to carry law enforcement in charge of the killing of the 26-year-old medical worker after among the officers was acquitted of state charges earlier this season.

Federal officials share but cannot fully imagine the grief felt by Ms. Taylors family, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in announcing the charges.

Breonna Taylor ought to be alive today, he said. The charges range between unlawful conspiracies, usage of force and obstruction of justice, Mr. Garland said.

The charges are against former officers Joshua Jaynes, Brett Hankison, and Kelly Goodlett, alongside Sgt. Kyle Meany.

Local activists and members of the Taylor family celebrated the charges and thanked federal officials.

It is a day when Black women saw equal justice in the us, lawyer Benjamin Crump said.

A few of Taylors family along with other supporters gathered in a park downtown Thursday and chanted Say her name, Breonna Taylor!

Taylors mother, Tamika Palmer, said she’s waited 874 days for police to be held accountable.

Todays overdue nonetheless it still hurts, she said Thursday. You all [are] learning today which were not crazy.

Ms. Taylor was shot to death by Louisville officers who had knocked down her door while executing the search warrant. Ms. Taylors boyfriend fired a go that hit among the officers because they came through the entranceway plus they returned fire, striking Ms. Taylor multiple times.

In the protests of 2020, Ms. Taylors name was often shouted alongside George Floyd, who was simply killed significantly less than 90 days after Ms. Taylor by way of a Minneapolis officer in a videotaped encounter that shocked the country.

Mr. Garland said the officers at Ms. Taylors home soon after midnight on March 13, 2020, weren’t mixed up in drafting of the warrant, and were unacquainted with the false and misleading statements. Mr. Hankison was the only real officer charged Thursday who was simply on the scene that night.

Mr. Hankison was indicted on two deprivation of rights charges alleging he used excessive force when he retreated from Ms. Taylors door, turned a large part and fired 10 shots in to the side of her two-bedroom apartment. Bullets flew right into a neighbors apartment, nearly striking one man.

He was acquitted by way of a jury of state charges of wanton endangerment earlier this season in Louisville.

Another indictment said Mr. Jaynes and Mr. Meany both knew the warrant used to find Ms. Taylors home had information that has been false, misleading and outdated. Both are charged with conspiracy and deprivation of rights.

Mr. Jaynes had requested the warrant to find Ms. Taylors house. He was fired in January 2021 by former Louisville Police interim chief Yvette Gentry for violating department standards in the preparation of a search warrant execution and to be untruthful in the Taylor warrant.

Mr. Jaynes and Ms. Goodlett allegedly conspired to falsify an investigative document that has been written after Ms. Taylors death, Mr. Garland said. Federal investigators also allege Mr. Meany, who testified at Mr. Hankisons trial earlier this season, lied to the FBI during its investigation.

Federal officials filed another charge against Ms. Goodlett, alleging she conspired with Mr. Jaynes to falsify Ms. Taylors warrant affidavit.

Garland alleged that Mr. Jaynes and Ms. Goodlett met in a garage in-may 2020 where they decided to tell investigators a false story.

Former Louisville Police Sgt. Johnathan Mattingly, who was simply shot at Ms. Taylors door, retired this past year. Another officer, Myles Cosgrove, who investigators said fired the shot that killed Ms. Taylor, was dismissed from the department in January 2021.

This story was reported by The Associated Press.

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