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Watch: Attorneys for Breonna Taylor’s Family Hold Press Conference on Settlement with City


Attorneys for Breonna Taylor’s family reached a settlement with the City of Louisville six months after Taylor was shot and killed by police during a night-time, no-knock raid of her apartment that found no drugs, a lawyer confirmed on Tuesday.

Sam Aguiar, an attorney for Taylor’s mother Tamika Palmer, told WLKY that the settlement of wrongful death suit yielded a “significant dollar amount.” The Associated Press reported that the settlement was not simply worth millions of dollars, but would be the “largest sum paid by the city for a police misconduct case.”

The settlement also includes police reform stipulations, but it’s not yet clear what that entails.

Civil rights attorney Ben Crump is scheduled to announce the development at 2 p.m. outside of Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer’s (D) office.

Watch the press conference in the player above courtesy WDRB

The lawsuit accused three Louisville police officers of blindly firing into Taylor’s residence, striking Taylor at least eight times and killing her.

One of those cops, Brett Hanikson, was fired. Sgt. John Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove were placed on administrative leave. The officers are white; Taylor was Black.

Hankison “displayed an extreme indifference to the value of human life when you wantonly and blindly fired ten (10) rounds into the apartment of Breonna Taylor on March 13, 2020,” then-Interim Police Chief Robert J. Schroeder wrote. “These rounds created a substantial danger of death and serious injury to Breonna Taylor and the three occupants of the apartment next to Ms. Taylor’s.”

No charges have been filed against the police officers who killed Taylor, despite months-long calls for their arrests. Taylor’s death sparked protests and the “say her name” movement. Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) has urged calm amid the lengthy ongoing investigation. It was reported last week that Cameron would soon present investigative findings to a grand jury.

Attorneys for Breonna Taylor’s mother had claimed that the fatal raid on the victim’s home was indirectly connected to a “political need” to make room for a real estate project. In addition, police were accused of lying about pertinent details—like the time the raid occurred. Palmer’s lawyers claimed that police falsely made it seem like the raid occurred at the same time in which the residence of the primary suspect in the case was apprehended.

The first raid–of the home of suspect Jamarcus Glover–was initially indicated to have happened at 12 a.m. on March 13, but, according to the lawsuit, police retroactively changed the records to make it seem like it occurred at 12:40 a.m.—the same time as the Taylor raid.

The lawsuit claimed that police intelligence and preparation on the Taylor raid was poor.

“They did not know who was in the home with Breonna,” the complaint said. “They did not know that there was not a rear exit to Breonna’s home. They believed that the backside of the building, which is actually apartment 3 (versus apartment 4), was part of Breonna’s home.”

Police also didn’t get an ambulance or EMS crew ready, and they incorrectly thought that Adrian Walker (no relation to Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker) was at the residence, according to the complaint. Kenneth Walker returned fire, he said, thinking that police were intruders. One officer, Sgt. Mattingly was hit in the leg, but has recovered. Charges were initially filed against Kenneth Walker, but the case was dropped.

A spokeswoman for Mayor Fischer previously called the real estate project-related allegation “outrageous” and “without foundation.”

Alberto Luperon contributed to this report.

[Image via Benjamin Crump]

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Matt Naham is the Senior A.M. Editor of Law&Crime.