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  • A drone image shows a mural of Breonna Taylor—who was killed in her own apartment by Louisville, Kentucky police officers—on two basketball courts in Annapolis, Maryland, USA. July 08, 2020.

    A drone image shows a mural of Breonna Taylor—who was killed in her own apartment by Louisville, Kentucky police officers—on two basketball courts in Annapolis, Maryland, USA. July 08, 2020. | Photo: EFE/EPA/Jim Lo Scalzo

Published 15 September 2020
Opinion

Despite protestors' demands to arrest and charge the cops who took Taylor's life, the city of Louisville, Kentucky, announced it would pay Taylor's family $12 million and institute a number of reforms to the city's police department.

To settle the wrongful-death lawsuit brought against the city for the March 13 shooting of Breonna Taylor—a 26-year-old Black woman murdered by the police in a botched raid on her apartment—Louisville will pay Taylor's family the largest sum in city history for police misconduct. 

While the state's attorney general Daniel Cameron continues investigating police actions during the shooting, protestors nationwide, Taylor's family, their high-profile attorney Ben Crump, and even celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and LeBron James are calling for the arrest of and criminal charges against the officers involved in the shooting. 

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In the six months since Taylor's shooting, her death, along with that of George Floyd and countless others, has become a rallying call for racial justice, police abolition, and anti-militarism in the United States and abroad. 

The settlement includes reforms on how search warrants are handled by the police, requiring commander approval before being sent to a judge. Lousiville has already banned the use of no-knock warrants in a law named after Breonna Taylor. After firing former police chief Steve Conrad in June, it named Yvette Gentry as the first Black woman to lead the city's police department.

 

Legal experts claim it may prove challenging to bring homicide-related charges against the police officers as they weren't wearing body cameras, and the department says there is no video evidence of the failed raid on Taylor's apartment.

The police were looking for Taylor's former boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover, who had already been arrested the same evening 10 miles away on suspected drug trafficking charges; instead, they blindly fired into Taylor's apartment, using flawed information to obtain the "no-knock warrant" to enter her home.

Taylor's mother, Tamika Palmer, who appeared alongside Lousiville Mayor Greg Fischer at Tuesday's press conference announcing the settlement, said: "We must not lose focus on what the real job is, and with that being said, it's time to move forward with the criminal charges because she deserves that and much more."

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