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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Four current and former Louisville police officers were federally indicted for their role in the death of Breonna Taylor

(CNN) — Four current and former Louisville police officers were involved in the deadly raid at the home of Breonna Taylor, a detective acting on a search warrant, and a former officer charged with shooting indiscriminately, charged with civil rights violations Is. and other charges, Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday.


These are the first federal charges filed against any of the officers involved in the failed raid. In addition to civil rights crimes, federal officials charged the four with unlawful conspiracy, unconstitutional use of force and obstruction, Garland said.

Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, said she waited 874 days to file federal charges and “defeated everything they sent to break them.” Her daughter’s death, she said, has taken her “to a place we can’t even imagine.”

“Every day for me has been March 13,” Palmer said, referring to the day Taylor was shot and killed in 2020.

Former Detective Joshua Jaynes, 40, Detective Kelly Goodlett, and Sergeant Kyle Meaney, 35, team up to submit a false affidavit and create a “false cover-up story” to search Taylor’s home prior to a Louisville Metropolitan Police Department raid on was alleged to have worked. in an attempt to avoid responsibility for his role in preparing the warrant affidavit which contained false information,” according to court documents.

Former detective Brett Hankison has been charged with “deliberately unconstitutionally use of excessive force… , “By shooting through a bedroom window that was covered with blinds and a blackout curtain.”

Three of Taylor’s neighbors, 46, also face charges of depriving them of their constitutional rights, as the indictment alleges that the bullets they fired went into a wall of Taylor’s house and an adjoining apartment.

Jaynes and Meaney are accused of knowingly depriving Taylor of her constitutional rights by drafting a false affidavit to obtain a search warrant and approving that “the affidavit contained false and misleading statements.” , material facts were omitted, based on outdated information and not supported by probable cause,” according to the Justice Department statement. “Both men knew that the execution of the search warrant would be carried out by armed officers of the Police Department, and it could create a dangerous situation for those officers and anyone found in Taylor’s home,” the report said. “

The statement said Goodlett conspired with Jaynes and Meaney to “false the search warrant for Taylor’s home and later cover up his actions.”

According to the release, Jaynes and another detective tried to hide their actions by drafting a false investigation letter and making false statements to investigators. Jaynes falsified a report in hopes of preventing a criminal investigation into Taylor’s death; According to the statement, Meeni also made false statements.

The attorney general alleged that after a failed raid, Goodlett and Janes met in a garage and conspired to give investigators false information.

“We allege that Ms. Taylor’s Fourth Amendment rights were violated when defendants Joshua Jaynes, Kyle Meaney and Kyle Goodlett requested a search warrant of Ms. Taylor’s home, knowing that officers had no potential for records. There was a lack of reason,” Garland said.

The affidavit falsely claimed that agents had verified that the target of their drug trafficking investigation had received packages at Taylor’s address, but Jaynes and Goodlett knew this was not true, Garland said.

Jaynes, who came on a video call from a detention center wearing shorts and a polo shirt, pleaded not guilty. Prosecutors are not saying that he should be detained in the pending trial, but they are saying that he should be barred from contacting potential witnesses or defendants in the case.

Breonna Taylor was an ER technician before she was shot dead at her home at the age of 26.

Hankison, who fired 10 shots at Taylor’s home and was acquitted of state willful endangerment charges earlier this year, was charged with two federal counts of eviction under the guise of the law. Hankinson’s attorney declined to comment. Only Hankinson was charged at the state level.

The Attorney General said the agents who executed the search warrant did not participate in its drafting and were not aware that it contained false information.

“We share, but cannot fully imagine the pain felt by the loved ones of Breonna Taylor and all those affected by the events of March 13, 2020,” Garland said. “Bryona Taylor must be alive today.”

According to the Department of Justice, a charge of willful infringement of a person’s rights carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, when the violation results in death. According to the department, a felony conviction carries a maximum sentence of 20 years, and charges of conspiracy and false statement carry a maximum sentence of five years.

Lawyer: “A Big Step Towards Justice”

Civil rights attorney Ben Crump, representing Taylor’s family, celebrated the allegations, as well as the “tough battle” fought by Taylor’s family, lawyers, advocates and members of the community. In 2020, Crump and his team achieved a settlement that paid Taylor’s family $12 million and implemented sweeping police reforms, including the use of social workers to support some police careers and requiring that commander Involves reviewing and approving search warrants prior to requesting judicial approval. ,

“Today has been a major step toward justice. We are grateful for the diligence and dedication of the FBI and Department of Justice in understanding what led to the killing of Brio and what followed. The justice that Brio received today was not possible.” without the efforts of Attorney General Merrick Garland or Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Kristen Clark,” Crump said in a statement. “We hope this petition announcement sends a message to all other officers that it is time to cover up and accept responsibility for their role in causing the death of an innocent and beautiful young black woman.”

Clark said in a statement: “Since the founding of our nation, the Bill of Rights of the United States Constitution has guaranteed that all people have the right to be safe in their homes, protected against false warrants, unreasonable searches, and unreasonable Free from the use and excessive force by the police. These charges reflect the Justice Department’s commitment to uphold the integrity of the criminal justice system and protect the constitutional rights of all Americans.”

In January 2021, the police department fired Jaynes and his colleague Miles Cosgrove. Cosgrove was fired for using lethal force for firing 16 shots at Taylor’s home and failing to activate his body camera, according to a copy of his termination letter.

According to the termination letter, Jens was fired for “failure to fill out the Search Operations Plan form” and for failing to get the package to Taylor’s previous boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover, at Taylor’s home.

Following his dismissal, Jaynes’ attorney, Thomas Clay, said the move was not unexpected and vowed to fight to have his client reinstated.

“Our position is that he did nothing wrong with any activity related to this record,” Clay told CNN in January 2021.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Cosgrove fired the shot that killed Taylor, adding that the shot was justified because Taylor’s boyfriend had previously shot officers. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker II, has repeatedly stated that he thought the officers were trespassing and opened fire when he broke in the door.

Crump’s co-lawyer Lonita Baker kicked Cameron out Thursday after Garland’s announcement that the attorney general “has no authority to hold any political office” on Kentucky’s behalf.
“The federal government had the guts to do what Daniel Cameron did not,” he said.

According to CNN-affiliated WDRB, a review board upheld Cosgrove’s firing last year, and Jaynes lost a similar appeal to the board in June.

The Louisville Police Union said the shooting was “inappropriate” at the time.

“There is no conclusive evidence in this case that LMPD policies and procedures were violated to the point of warranting termination,” the River City Fraternal Order of Police said in a statement. “Interim Chief (Yvette) Gentry not only made the wrong decision, but also sent a threatening message to every sworn officer in the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department.”

Taylor, a 26-year-old ER technician, was shot dead in his apartment during an illegal forced entry raid in the early hours of March 13, 2020. He died, along with other black people, at the hands of law enforcement. , sparked a flurry of protests for police reform, including George Floyd in Minnesota and Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia.

None of the officers who participated in the raid have been charged in Taylor’s murder.

State prosecutors charged only Hankinson in connection with the shooting. The LMPD fired Hankison in June 2020, and in September 2020, a grand jury indicted Hankison on three counts of felony for indiscriminate firing of 10 shots at Taylor’s home.

A jury acquitted Hankison of all charges in March.

— CNN’s Amir Vera and Michelle Watson contributed to this report.

World Nation News Desk
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