Why Judgement in Breonna Taylor’s Case was Lackluster

Valentina Arias, Multimedia Photo Editor

On Friday, Mar. 13, Breonna Taylor was shot and killed inside of her apartment in Louisville, Kentucky by Louisville police officers Jonathan Mattingly, Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankison. When her family members and relatives asked the grand jury to charge the officers for the murder, they rejected the request. The officers who killed Taylor have yet to be charged for her death. Taylor deserves justice for what happened that dreadful night.

The night Taylor died, the officers looked for her ex-boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover, an alleged drug dealer. Police suspected him of using Taylor’s address to obtain packages. The officers received a “no-knock warrant” to enter and search her home, but before the raid took place it was changed to a” knock and announce”. The normal protocol states that the officers have to announce themselves before entering; instead, they entered her home without any warning. There is a discrepancy whether the police officers actually did announce themselves, as they said they did but Walker said they did not or he did not hear them. In the midst of this, Taylor’s current boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, thought that the trespasser could be her ex-boyfriend. Walker then fired his licensed gun a shot which ended up hitting Mattingly in the leg. The officers shot back and unfortunately, one of those bullets mortally wounded Taylor.

When Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, heard about what occurred, she demanded justice for her daughter. She filed a lawsuit against the three officers who had a role in her daughter’s death. Last month, the New York Times updated one of their published articles which informs readers that the man the police were trying to catch — Taylor’s ex-boyfriend Glover, who lived 10 miles away from Taylor had been arrested prior to the officers entering her home. Even then, the officers who murdered Taylor did not get arrested. Later on, the Kentucky grand jury formally charged one of the three officers, but not for her death. Instead, the grand jury charged Hankison with “wanton endangerment,” since he did fire into a neighboring home. Louisville Metro Police Department also fired him for violating department policy but the two other officers still work for them, which should not be the case. Since that day, Taylor’s family has received a $12 million settlement from the city of Louisville, and the city also agreed to make a change so what happened to Taylor would not happen to anyone else.

Taylor’s death gained national attention. On June 5, 2020, what would be her 27th birthday, people began using the hashtag “Say Her Name”, many used this to remember her by. Sadly, she could not celebrate her birthday, but it did raise awareness about her case and about other black women who have met the same fate as her. Hopefully sometime soon, her murderers are charged for their wrongdoings and all three officers are fired from the LMPD. Taylor deserves justice for the unspeakable actions done to her that night.