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1 officer indicted in Breonna Taylor case; not for her death

Kentucky AG visits family of Breonna Taylor to 'personally express condolences'
Posted at 2:15 PM, Sep 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-23 14:49:14-04

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A grand jury has announced that none of the three officers involved in the police shooting of Breonna Taylor will be indicted on homicide charges, including murder or manslaughter.

Instead, one of the officers, Brett Hankison, is being charged with three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment, a class D felony. The felony is punishable of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. Hankison's bail is set at $15,000 cash bond.

Kentucky law says, “a person is guilty of wanton endangerment in the first degree when, under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life, he wantonly engages in conduct which creates a substantial danger of death or serious physical injury to another person.”

The other two officers involved in the shooting, Jon Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, are not facing charges.

The state’s attorney general, Daniel Cameron, says the state could not pursue charges against Mattingly and Cosgrove, because their use of force was “justified.”

Cameron says he is commissioning a task force to review the search warrant process in Kentucky.

With protests expected following the charging decision, Cameron is urging demonstrators to remain peaceful in the coming days. He says peaceful protest is part of their rights as Americans, but “instigating violence and destruction are not.”

Louisville prepares for potential unrest after announcement

Before the charging decision was announced, Mayor Greg Fischer signed two executive orders.

One order declared a state of emergency due to the potential for civil unrest. The other restricts access to downtown parking garages and bans on-street parking in order to provide an extra layer of security for protests in and around Jefferson Park, where many protests over the case have taken place.

The mayor has also set a curfew in the city from 9:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. ET.

What we know about the Breonna Taylor case

Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT, was shot and killed by Louisville police officers who served a no-knock search warrant at her home in the early morning hours of March 13.

During the incident, Taylor’s boyfriend has said that he thought the plainclothes officers were intruders and fired a warning shot. The officers returned fire, shooting Taylor several times, and she died in the hallway of her apartment.

In June, the Louisville Metro Police Department fired one of the officers involved, Brett Hankison, saying he violated procedures by showing "extreme indifference to the value of human life." The other two officers involved in the case, Jon Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, have been placed on administrative reassignment, WLEX reports.

Protesters across the state have said these actions are not enough and have continuously called for the arrest of the officers involved in Taylor's shooting.

Taylor is one of a handful of African Americans who have died at the hands of police officers or former police officers in 2020. The killings prompted massive protests calling for an end to police brutality across the country.

Jordan Mickle at WLEX contributed to this report