US 'This city has failed us': Louisville protesters angered over lack of indictments in Breonna Taylor case
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Three additional officers who were at Breonna Taylor's apartment — Tony James, Michael Campbell and Michael Nobles — are also under investigation.Europe Seeing Disturbing Rise in Coronavirus Cases
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Protesters led an hourslongWednesday, vowing to continue calling for justice for after learning that involved in her death would be criminally charged.
Anger was palpable as the protesters walked through several residential neighborhoods, eventually clashing with a line of police who arrested participants.
Breonna Taylor decision: What is wanton endangerment, the charge one Louisville officer faces?
One of three officers involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor was charged with first-degree wanton endangerment , while two other officers involved in the shooting, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, were not indicted. Activists and Taylor's family called for harsher charges, including homicide.Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning. Taylor, a 26-year-old ER technician, was fatally shot as the three officers sprayed more than two dozen bullets into her apartment.
Later in the evening, violence erupted asin downtown, and at least 46 people had been arrested as of early Thursday. The officers sustained non life-threatening injuries, as one underwent surgery and the other was in stable condition, said interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder.
Earlier in the day, Jefferson County Judge Annie O'Connell announced that a grand jury had indictedon three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment for firing into an apartment that neighbored Taylor's.
The grand jury declined to bring charges against, who were also involved in the March 13 shooting at Taylor's southern Louisville apartment.
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"It's a tragedy. This is an embarrassment, and it's exactly why there have been protests for the last (119) days," said pastor Tim Findley. "This is a disappointing, hurtful, painful day in our city.
"What I just heard amounts to a slap on the wrist for him murdering, for them murdering Breonna Taylor."
The Breonna Taylor case:
'Vigorous' self-defense laws:
Around 200 people gathered at Jefferson Square Park — which has served as a home base local protests — as the announcement was played on a loudspeaker.
As the decision wrapped up, there was first confusion, then anger from those who had gathered. A few people cried.
“Is that it?” one woman asked.
Protesters are confused and livid. “Is that it?” Someone asked.— Hayes Gardner (@HayesGardner)
The announcement followed nearly four months of civil unrest in Louisville, where protesters have led mileslong marches, shut down traffic and arranged pop-up street fairs on behalf of Taylor, an unarmed Black woman who was killed during a narcotics search that went awry.
The demonstrations collectively called for an end to police brutality and, touching on interlinking issues that disproportionately affect Black residents, such as food insecurity and gentrification.
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But through it all, the protesters' main message has been consistent: The officers involved in Taylor's death should be fired, arrested and criminally charged.
Protests around the US:
"They're still working and still getting paid," Shemaeka Shaw, a community organizer and affordable housing advocate, recently told The Courier Journal. "… That's a slap in the face to a mourning mother who still has to walk through the city knowing the men who killed her daughter" remain on Louisville police's payroll.
Protesters have specifically referenced Mattingly, Cosgrove and Hankison, who fired their weapons at Taylor's apartment, as well as Detective Joshua Jaynes, who swore out the affidavit to get a search warrant for Taylor's apartment and four other homes the night she was killed.
Thoughfor his role in the shooting, Mattingly, Cosgrove and Jaynes remain on administrative reassignment.
“I’m heartbroken," protester Logan Cleaver said Wednesday. "This is not a justice system if it’s not for everybody.”
Soon after the announcement, protesters began marching from the park toward the edges of downtown.
In the days leading up to the indictment, Louisville Metro Police employees had restricted traffic access in a 25-block perimeter around the park so that protesters could safely "express their First Amendment Rights."
But the march quickly left the designated area and passed through several residential neighborhoods.
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Tamika Palmer made the hour-long drive to hear the news from Attorney General Cameron directly and learned she wouldn't get the justice she sought.Tamika Palmer made the hourlong drive from Louisville to Frankfort on Wednesday to hear the news from Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron directly — only to learn she wouldn't get the justice she sought.
Emotions ran high through the demonstration, which remained predominately peaceful, with protesters expressing frustrations with both city and state leaders, who they said should have taken actions in Taylor's case sooner.
"We knew this was a possibility, but we didn't believe it," said Stachelle Bussey, a regular at the protests. "... People have been charged with way less evidence, and with all the evidence you had, they just charged one for endangerment, not even for shooting into her apartment but for shooting in other apartments.
"We are in shock. This city has failed us. Our leadership has failed."
In the midafternoon, protesters made their way toward Bardstown Road, a commercial area lined with independent businesses and restaurants.
Though a handful of people set trashcans on fire and confronted passersby, others encouraged the crowd not to commit vandalism and to remain focused on saying Breonna Taylor's name.
Later, protesters were met by officers who were carrying pepper bullet guns and batons and who refused to let the group pass.
Protesters were pushed from a sidewalk into the road, where several were forcefully arrested. The area cleared as police created a small perimeter with caution tape.
The grand jury's decision closes a chapter for the protesters. But it won't end demonstrations for Taylor and systemic changes.
Thursday marks 120 days of protests in the city.
"This revolutionary movement began with Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, but it has turned into international calls" for racial justice, said Tyra Walker, a co-chair of the. "We will continue to push for policy change because if we don't change the policies, we will be back here fighting the same fight 50 years from now, if not sooner."
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This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal:
Breonna Taylor neighbor wants to know why cop wasn't charged for shooting into his unit .
"If that bullet went through my bed maybe I would have been dead too," Breonna Taylor's neighbor Stanley David said.One punched through the hallway. The other passed right in front of his bedroom door, roughly 5 feet from where he was sleeping.