5 months later, Kentucky attorney general speaks with Breonna Taylor's family

Attorneys for the Taylor family also met with the Louisville mayor.

August 13, 2020, 12:10 PM

More than 150 days after the killing of Breonna Taylor, a young Black medical worker fatally shot in Louisville, Kentucky, by plainclothes officers who were executing a no-knock warrant, it's still unclear whether any police will face charges, attorneys for Taylor's family said.

Ben Crump and Lonita Baker said at a press conference on Thursday that the family met with the mayor and state attorney general on Wednesday but that no definitive answers emerged.

Crump did say he "absolutely" expects there to be charges in the case, but he didn't provide additional details.

Breonna Taylor, 26, was shot and killed by police officers, March 13, 2020, after they allegedly executed a search warrant of the wrong home, in Louisville, Ky.
Courtesy Breonna Taylor Family

Baker said Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron personally extended his condolences to the family during the meeting, the first time he's spoken with the family.

Cameron told them he didn't reach out previously because he feared it could interfere with his investigation. His office is waiting on ballistics reports from the FBI and additional interviews before any decisions are made, Baker added.

"He wants to have the right answer at the end of this. He doesn't want to rush through it," Taylor's mother, Tamika Palmer, who attended the meeting, said at the press conference.

But, Baker added, "We're not going to wait forever. We do want this resolved quickly and accurately."

Taylor was killed March 13 after officers executed a no-knock entry into her home, according to the arrest warrant obtained by ABC News. Police said she had been accepting packages for an ex-boyfriend whom police were investigating as an alleged drug trafficker.

Taylor and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, got out of bed around midnight when they heard commotion outside. After a short exchange with officers, Walker said he fired his gun in self-defense, saying he thought the home was being broken into, according to police.

From left, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, Det. Myles Cosgrove and Det. Brett Hankison were involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor on March 13, 2020, in Louisville, Ky.
Louisville Metro Police Dept.

The plainclothes officers returned multiple shots, including the ones that fatally struck Taylor. Police said the no-knock warrant was necessary "due to the nature of how these drug traffickers operate," the arrest warrant states.

Attorneys for Taylor's estate claimed that more than 20 shots were fired into her apartment, hitting her multiple times.

Crump said Thursday that in a separate meeting he and his co-attorneys challenged Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer "to make sure that he is courageous and responsible in trying to lead his city out of this tragedy."

"He has that power and we want him to rise to the occasion," Crump said.

Crump also said they discussed the officer who attorneys for Taylor's family allege lied on a probable cause affidavit that "enticed" a judge to sign a no-knock warrant, calling for him to be fired.

"You have to admit the wrong that occurred, and then you have to have conscientious thoughts about how that wrong happened," Crump said.

PHOTO: Members of Breonna Taylor's family meet with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, Aug. 12, 2020, in Louisville, Ky.
Tamika Palmer, far left, the mother of Breonna Taylor, and other family members meet with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, Aug. 12, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. Taylor was fatally shot by Louisville police on March 13, and protesters have called for Cameron to charge the officers involved.
Christopher 2X via AP

Baker added that they discussed with the mayor a number of things that they believe the city needs to change, including ordinances, the FOP contract, and the termination of other officers involved. There was a positive dialogue, she said, but now it's time to turn it into action.

Taylor's aunt, Bianca Austin, said that even though it's been five months, each day still feels like March 13.

Wearing a T-shirt with Taylor's face pinned to the left arm and a mask with her niece's name, Austin said the family still has faith the city will do the right thing.

"We need to take our city back so there won't be any more names," she said.

Palmer said she hopes to see justice beyond just her daughter's case.

"At this point it's bigger than Breonna, it's bigger than Black lives," Palmer said. "It's about bridging the gap between us and police."

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