Six months after the fatal police shooting of African American woman Breonna Taylor in her own apartment, the US judiciary charged a police officer – albeit not with the deadly shooting itself. Kentucky state attorney general Daniel Cameron said Wednesday.
But it is about shots of the white police officer during the operation, who entered a neighboring apartment. There were three people unharmed at the time. No criminal charges have been brought against two other police officers involved in the operation whose bullets hit Taylor.
Civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, who represents the Taylor family, spoke in the short Twitter messaging service of a “scandalous and insulting” court decision.
Protesters took to the streets in the city of Louisville, where Taylor was murdered in March.
Mayor Greg Fischer had declared a state of emergency the day before for fear of riots. The police placed barricades in the city center and shops and restaurants protected their glass facades with plywood.
Taylor was shot dead in her own home by white police officers in Louisville, Kentucky on March 13. Three plainclothes officers stormed the apartment during a nighttime drug attack. Taylor’s friend, who was in bed with the 26-year-old paramedic, said he thought it was a robbery, fired a shot with his gun and wounded an officer. The three officers then fired their service weapons.
Attorney General Cameron said Taylor was hit by six bullets, one of which was fatal. Her boyfriend was untouched. Police fired a total of 32 shots. The injured officer and the police officer standing next to him legitimately reacted to Taylor’s friend’s shot with their own shots, Cameron said.
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According to the judiciary, this does not apply to the third policeman Hankison. Apparently he didn’t hit Taylor himself, but several of his shots went into a neighboring apartment. He is therefore accused of neglecting to endanger the lives of others in three cases. Up to five years in prison is available for each of these charges.
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)