Dec 30, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Louisville police move to fire 2 officers over Breonna Taylor shooting

People maintaining the decorations around a memorial for Breonna Taylor in Louisville in September 2020.

People maintaining the decorations around a memorial for Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, in September. Photo: Jon Cherry/Getty Images

The Louisville Metro Police Department on Tuesday notified two detectives connected to the police shooting of Breonna Taylor that they would be fired, the Courier-Journal reports.

Why it matters: If fired, they would be the latest officers held accountable in the shooting that set off weeks of protests in the city and inspired nationwide demonstrations.

Context: Taylor was shot dead by police on March 13 when LMPD officers conducting a narcotics investigation barged into the 26-year-old's home in plain-clothes to serve a "no-knock" warrant.

  • Police exchanged fire with Taylor's boyfriend, who said he fired believing the home was being broken into.
  • Protests over Taylor's death erupted in Louisville in May following the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota. The Louisville Metro Council has since banned no-knock warrants.

The big picture: Detective Joshua Jaynes received a pretermination letter Tuesday from interim Chief Yvette Gentry after an internal investigation found he had violated department procedures while preparing the no-knock search warrant for Taylor's apartment, according to the Courier-Journal.

  • Detective Myles Cosgrove, who the FBI concluded fired the shot that killed Taylor, also received a pretermination letter.
  • A grand jury in September indicted detective Brett Hankison on three counts of wanton endangerment for firing shots blindly into neighboring apartments while entering Taylor's home.

Of note: Jaynes and his lawyer have a closed hearing with interim Chief Gentry staff Thursday morning to convince the chief that his firing is unwarranted.

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