Politics & Policy

Officer Involved in Shooting of Breonna Taylor to Be Fired, Louisville Mayor Announces

People march in the streets during a protest against the deaths of Breonna Taylor by Louisville police and George Floyd by Minneapolis police, in Louisville, Ky., May 29, 2020. (Bryan Woolston/Reuters)

One of three police officers involved in the shooting death of Louisville, Ky., resident Breonna Taylor will be fired, the city’s mayor announced on Friday.

Termination proceedings against Louisville Metro Police Officer Brett Hankison have been initiated by department chief Rob Schroeder, according to the mayor.

“Unfortunately, due to a provision in state law that I very much would like to see changed, both the Chief and I are precluded from talking about what brought us to this moment, or even the timing of this decision,” Mayor Greg Fischer said in a statement.

Taylor, an emergency medical technician, was shot after police entered her apartment while executing a “no-knock” warrant as part of a narcotics investigation. While police told investigators that they had identified themselves, Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker stated that he did not hear the officers do so.

Walker believed the officers were intruders, and used his licensed handgun to repel them. Police found no drugs in the apartment.

The shooting garnered renewed attention in the wake of massive George Floyd demonstrations that have appeared across the U.S. On June 12 the Louisville City Council passed an ordinance titled “Breonna’s Law” to ban no-knock warrants.

“All Breonna wanted to do was save lives,” Taylor’s mother Tamika Palmer told the city council before a vote on the law. “It’s important this law passes, because with that, she’ll get to continue to do that, even in her death.”

Senator Rand Paul (R., Ky.) has introduced legislation that would ban such warrants on a national level.

“After talking with Breonna Taylor’s family, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s long past time to get rid of no-knock warrants,” Paul said in a statement last week.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.


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