Six months after the deadly police shooting of African-American woman Breonna Taylor, the American judiciary charged a police officer. The now-fired officer is charged with negligently endangering the lives of others, as a judge in Louisville, Kentucky announced Wednesday. This is a less serious crime than murder or manslaughter, for example.
Taylor was shot dead in her own home by white police officers in Louisville on March 13. Plainclothes officers stormed the apartment during a nighttime drug attack. Taylor’s friend, who was in bed with the 26-year-old paramedic, thought he was being robbed, opened fire with his weapon and injured a police officer. Officials then fired their service weapons.
Taylor was killed by several bullets from the police, her boyfriend survived. The police officers were subsequently suspended, but not initially arrested and formally charged. An officer has been fired – he has now been charged.
Louisville authorities looked to the court decision with concern on Wednesday. Mayor Greg Fischer declared a state of emergency for fear of riots. The police placed barricades in the city center and shops and restaurants protected their glass facades with plywood.
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The Taylor case has caused outrage across the country. During the protests against racism and police brutality against black people following the death of African American George Floyd in a brutal police operation in late May, Taylor’s photo was displayed time and time again and her name was mentioned – she is one of the symbolic figures of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Celebrities like singer Beyoncé, host Oprah Winfrey and basketball player LeBron James have called for justice for Taylor. In mid-September, Taylor’s family reached an agreement with the City of Louisville on $ 12 million in damages. (AFP)