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Man arrested for allegedly threatening to kill cops in exchange for money while flashing gun in Facebook video

The Department of Justice announced Sunday the arrest of a man officials say threatened to kill police officers in exchange for money in a social media video.

What are the details?

The Justice Department said in a press released it arrested 29-year-old Cortez Lamont Edwards, a resident of Louisville, Kentucky.

Edwards is accused of posting a video to Facebook on Sept. 23 while “in possession of an AR variant pistol including a non-extendible support brace with an extended magazine.” Edwards reportedly stated in the video that he would shoot Louisville Metro Police Department officers in exchange for $30,000.

During a search of Edwards’ residence, authorities discovered multiple firearms. More from the press release:

On September 27, 2020, Special Agents from the ATF, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), United States Marshal Service, Federal Protective Service and officers and detectives from the Louisville Metro Police Department executed a search warrant at Edwards’ residence without incident. The defendant was located laying on a couch in the living room of his residence. A Glock model 19, 9-millimeter semi-automatic pistol, bearing serial number BPHA723, was located on the couch where Edwards was sleeping at the time of entry into the residence. At the time of entry into the living room, Edwards was the only adult present in that room and there a toddler present in a playpen.

Ultimately, Edwards was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. He faces up to 10 years in federal prison if convicted.

“Threats against law enforcement are unacceptable,” special agent in charge R. Shawn Morrow of the Louisville Field Division of the ATF said in the DOJ press release.

He added, “When you threaten police and brandish firearms, you can expect the attention of ATF. This morning ATF agents, with the immediate assistance of LMPD, HSI, U.S. Marshals, and the FBI, executed a warrant and arrested an armed felon ensuring he wouldn’t carry out those threats.”

Anything else?

Edwards’ alleged threat came the same day that Louisville was plunged into further chaos after Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced the police officer responsible for shooting Breonna Taylor would not be criminally punished for Taylor’s untimely death.

Unfortunately, two Louisville police officers were shot after Cameron’s announcement. Those officers were expected to make a full recovery, and a suspect was arrested for the shooting.

“Louisville needs healing and safety for its citizens, not armed felons seeking bids to shoot police,” U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman said. “Federal law enforcement here will continue to respond as one to swiftly mitigate threats to our city.”

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Black Lives Matter activists try to bully Louisville store owner, but he doesn’t back down: ‘Nobody can intimidate me’

Black Lives Matter activists attempted to pressure a store owner into supporting their causes, but the man wasn’t about to be bullied into blindly agreeing with them.

An armed man was guarding his store in Louisville on Friday night. He was protecting his business because it was firebombed the night before when riots erupted, which were sparked by the grand jury decision not to charge any of the police officers involved in the Breonna Taylor case with homicide.

Several Black Lives Matter supporters confronted business owner Fadi Faouri, as seen in video taken by Daily Caller field reporter Jorge Ventura.

One of the activists ask Faouri, “Does black lives matter?” The store owner replies, “If you’re a good person, I will care about you. If you’re a bad person…pffft.”

With several other BLM supporters surrounding him and multiple people recording him, the BLM supporter then asks, “Does Breonna Taylor matter?” The business owner replies, “I don’t know.”

The activist aggressively asks, “What do you mean you don’t know?” Another person in the crowd comes forward and asks, “How you don’t know if it doesn’t matter?”

Faouri defends himself during the tense encounter, “You’re trying to intimidate me.”

More people in the crowd become agitated with his answer and want him to explain his stance of impartiality on the hot-button topic.

“I’m not playing that game,” the gun-toting store owner proclaims.

The crowd grows larger, and people steadily move closer to Faouri.

The store owner declares, “Nobody can intimidate me.”

While most of the group walks away, one woman who claims to be a documentary filmmaker confronts Faouri, and tells him the details from the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor. The store owner responds by saying, “That’s not my f***ing business.”

Not satisfied with the response, she retorts, “It should be your business, because all lives matter, right? You just said, ‘All lives matter.’ You can say that, but it’s the color black that is the issue.”

“You have an issue with that, I don’t have an issue,” Faouri rebuts. “I don’t see color.”

“I don’t care, white or black bulls****, I see you as a human being, that’s all that I care about,” he says.

“I don’t care about white, black, purple, green, whatever the f*** it is,” he states. “I don’t believe in color.”

(Content Warning: Strong language):

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Louisville protests peaceful on third evening after Breonna Taylor decision

Protesters in Louisville, Kentucky, marched and rallied peacefully for several hours as of 11:00 p.m. EST on Friday, in what was the third evening of demonstrations held in protest of a grand jury’s decision Wednesday not to charge three police officers in the death of Breonna Taylor, who was killed in a police raid in March.

What are the details?

Early in the evening, the mood appeared tense as some protesters were seen yelling and antagonizing police officers who were on the scene. Much of the footage available was captured by “independent guy on the scene” Brendan Gutenschwager, who reported that media and cameras were welcomed by demonstrators on Friday.

One apparent organizer was seen on video declaring that protesters would be “going to war tonight,” and advising those with pre-existing conditions not to stay out past the city-imposed 9:00 p.m. curfew while warning that they would likely end up in jail overnight.

The same man led the gathering in a moment of silence to honor the memory of Breonna Taylor.

Protesters marched to the First Unitarian Church of Louisville ahead of curfew, as they had done the night before. Just like Thursday night, the church offered demonstrators sanctuary from arrest, as the house of worship is exempt from the curfew rules.

Another observer reported just ahead of curfew, “Currently calm in Louisville, KY at the church sanctuary. No destruction of property, looting, arson, or rioting in sight. Lots of car horns for support.”

A reporter from WBZ-TV reported more than an hour after curfew that “Organizers of this #JusticeforBreonnaTaylor rally just told everyone to go home safely, after four peaceful hours rallying and marching throughout the city”

It was a welcomed night of calm (as of this writing) after there were scenes circulated Thursday night of protesters smashing glass with bats.

Also on Thursday night, the doors of the Louisville City Library were smashed, and an activist tossed a flare inside. Two dozen people were arrested.

On Wednesday, the day of the grand jury’s decision, tensions were high. A riot was declared, and 127 people were arrested — including two reporters from The Daily Caller, and a state Rep. Attica Scott (D).

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Buildings, vehicles vandalized on second night of Breonna Taylor protests, but no recorded attacks on citizens or police after two cops were shot Wednesday

Protests in Louisville were less violent Thursday night, calming down significantly from the previous night, during which two Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officers were shot, the Courier Journal reported.

Thursday was the second night since the grand jury decision not to charge any officers for killing Breonna Taylor during a raid on her home in March. One former officer, Brett Hankison, was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment, related to his allegedly shooting recklessly into surrounding apartments — not to the fact that Taylor was shot and killed.

The Courier Journal reported that 24 people were arrested overnight Thursday, down from 127 the night before. Some of the arrests were for unlawful assembly and failure to disperse, and others, including a state representative, Attica Scott, were charged with felony rioting.

Local reports say protesters numbered in the hundreds, mostly marching through the city and chanting. Some protesters reportedly confronted armed militia members who said they had come to the city to protect property, but those confrontations did not escalate into violence.

Police say some businesses and buses were damaged by vandals. Social media videos show some protesters carrying bats and smashing windows. Louisville police indicated that only “several” marchers were involved in the vandalism. One person tossed a flare through a broken window at the library.

After the curfew, protesters took refuge in the First Unitarian Church, where church leaders were allowing people to gather on the property to avoid arrest. While police appeared to line up outside the church for some time, protesters were eventually allowed to leave after police concluded their investigation at the library.

“Contrary to rumors on social media, the LMPD, at no time, was waiting for ‘a decision from legal about whether or not they can storm the property,'” an LMPD Facebook post read. “No arrests were made for being on church property. No National Guard was deployed to address these issues. Officers remained at 4th and York in order to secure the area so maintenance could address the library windows that were broken and an arson investigation begun. Once that was complete, police left the area and protestors were given directions on how to leave the church and head home and were able to walk back to their vehicles.”

Louisville police declared a state of emergency earlier this week in advance of the attorney general’s announcement about charges against the officers, which foreshadowed a decision officials knew protesters would be unhappy with. The windows of some federal buildings had been boarded up, and in-person court hearings were changed to virtual meetings this week for fear of unrest.

Two police officers were shot Wednesday night. Police arrested 26-year-old Larynzo Johnson in connection with the shooting. Both of the officers, Maj. Aubrey Gregory and Officer Robinson Desroches, suffered non-life-threatening injuries. Johnson has been charged with two counts of first-degree assault of a police officer and 14 counts of wanton endangerment of a police officer.

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Media Declares “Violence Is Inevitable” As 2 Cops Shot In Louisville; Reporters Arrested In Aggressive Police Crackdown

This article was originally published by Tyler Durden at ZeroHedge. 

As we reported last night, protesters hit the streets in Louisville, NYC, LA, Denver, Oakland, Washington DC, and other cities across the US after a Kentucky grand jury decided that no officers would be charged in the killing of Breonna Taylor, a tragic accident that was the result of officers serving a “no-knock” warrant.

In Louisville, the city where Taylor was shot and killed, 2 police were shot as gunfire broke out downtown after hundreds “peacefully” marched earlier in the evening. But as has become distressingly familiar, the real hard-core agitators came out after dark. A suspect in the shooting of the two officers was taken into custody shortly after, but he wasn’t the only “protester” who was packing heat at the “non-violent demonstration.”

Amazingly, left-leaning media outlets had the gall to frame the shooting of two police as an “inevitable”, while framing the events of last night in distorted terms that served to support their narrative of a corrupt justice system absolving three murderers, instead of reporting the facts: that a jury of their peers – not some unassailable magistrate – decided on the indictments for the three officers.

The Daily Beast reported that none of the officers were charged for Breonna Taylor’s killing. While that’s technically true – officer Brett Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment for firing into a nearby occupied apartment, not for the shots that killed Taylor, which were fired by a colleague – the result is misleading, and intentionally so, we suspect.

But we digress. Circling back to the events of Wednesday night, the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department – better known as the LMPD – aggressively enforced curfew violations after the shooting. Several reporters – including two journalists for the Daily Caller – were arrested during the sweep, and despite protests from their editors, were charged with breaking curfew and attending an “unlawful” assembly. It’s believed that dozens of protesters and reporters were taken into custody during the sweep of Jefferson Square, which has served as the base for BLM protesters who have been out demonstrating every night for the past 118 days.

As far as violence goes, this video has gone viral after being shared by several mainstream media outlets.

The DC reporters arrested included Jorge Ventura and Shelby Talcott.

When editors reached out, the department refused to budge.

Circling back to the wounded officers, Interim LMPD chief Robert Schroeder confirmed the two officers had been shot and sustained life-threatened injuries, and that a suspect was in custody. One of the officers was shot in the abdomen, while the the other was shot in the thigh.

“I am very concerned about the safety of our officers,” Schroeder said. “Obviously we’ve had two officers shot tonight, and that is very serious. … I think the safety of our officers and the community we serve is of the utmost importance,” Schroeder said, according to the Courier-Journal.

As of 11 pm local time on Thursday, police had arrested 46 people, which includes those arrested in the sweep of Jefferson Square, which reportedly happened around 8 pm.

Independent video journalist Brendan Gutenschwager narrowly avoided arrest last night. Afterward, he chronicled the eerily silent streets and surveyed the damage.

Thousands gathered across NYC and LA, and hundreds more in Portland, Chicago, Atlanta, and other cities around the country as others marched “in solidarity”.

Expect the unrest to continue Thursday, as it has for nearly 120 days.

The post Media Declares “Violence Is Inevitable” As 2 Cops Shot In Louisville; Reporters Arrested In Aggressive Police Crackdown first appeared on SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don't Say We Didn't Warn You.

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Two Daily Caller reporters arrested during Louisville protests

Two reporters from the conservative website the Daily Caller were arrested during the protests in Louisville, Kentucky, Wednesday night, and thus far authorities in Louisville appear determined to detain and charge them just like other suspects who were arrested as part of a mass sweep to enforce the city’s curfew.

The report from the Daily Caller indicates that reporters Shelby Talcott and Jorge Ventura were arrested as part of a massive sweep conducted by police, who reportedly did not respond to the reporters’ repeated insistence that they were members of the press.

Prior to their arrest, Ventura and Talcott recorded and tweeted some of the scenes of chaos in Louisville as they unfolded.

The reporters also recorded and tweeted the mass detention and the moments immediately preceding it.

Wednesday night, Daily Caller Editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Ingersoll tweeted that he had notified the Louisville Metro Police Department that Talcott and Ventura were members of the press and that he expected them to be released shortly. Later, however, Ingersoll expressed his frustration that the Daily Caller’s reporters were going to be processed in exactly the same manner as the rioters they were covering.

However, as of Thursday, the reporters had not been released and no one from the Daily Caller had been permitted to talk to either Talcott or Ventura, leading Daily Caller co-founder Neil Patel to criticize the treatment of the Caller’s reporters and to threaten a lawsuit if the reporters were not permitted to exercise their First Amendment right to report on an ongoing news story.

In the thread, Patel noted that, unlike other media outlets, the Daily Caller has taken care to interview police and get their side of the story and tell it in a balanced way.

Patel concluded his thread with a warning: “The Louisville Police Department (@LMPD) is going to find out all about this in the form of a lawsuit unless things start changing fast.”

The Louisville Metro Police Department did not immediately return a request for comment on this story.

This is a developing story and will be updated as events warrant.

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Louisville Police Department says one suspect in custody after two officers shot during Breonna Taylor protests

The interim chief of the Louisville Metro Police Department said that a suspect was in custody after the shooting of two officers during the violent protests over the death of Breonna Taylor.

Interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder said in a short media briefing on Wednesday evening that the two officers were in stable condition, and that one was undergoing surgery.

Schroeder said that police were responding at about 8:30 p.m. to a call of shots being fired at the corner of First and Broadway streets when more shots rang out and two police were struck.

Those police were taken to University Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Various videos taken during the shooting were circulated on social media soon afterward, including one reportedly from the police livestream from their Facebook page.

The FBI said they were helping with the investigation into the shooting.

Protests erupted immediately after the announcement that a grand jury had returned charges against only one of three police involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor, a black woman, during a police raid in March. The third officer was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment over the shots made into neighboring apartments, but not for those that killed Taylor.

The mayor had announced a 72-hour curfew for the city beginning Wednesday from 9 p.m. until 6 a.m.

Here’s the video of the media briefing:

Louisville Metro Police Dept hold press conference following 2 officers shot

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Breaking: Two police officers shot during violent protests in Louisville over Breonna Taylor

The Louisville Metro Police Dept. said that two officers had been shot during the violent protests in Louisville, Kentucky, over the charges announced against one officer related to the death of Breonna Taylor.

Black Lives Matter protesters immediately denounced the announcement of charges against only one of the officers involved the controversial shooting death that happened during a police raid in March.

Police initially said that one officer had been shot but offered few details about the incident.

Later they confirmed that two officers had been shot.

Protesters took to the streets to demonstrate against the grand jury decision. Reporters and others on social media documented small fires being set off and firecrackers being fired off during many of the gatherings.

Reporters in the vicinity said that firecrackers were set off at about the same time as the gunshots.

Here’s more about the incident:

Police officer shot in Louisville: Report

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BREAKING: One officer charged in Breonna Taylor’s death, mayor implements 72-hour curfew to limit potential riots

One former Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officer was charged Wednesday in the death of Breonna Taylor, with the two other involved officers avoiding charges altogether, USA Today reported.

Former LMPD Sgt. Brett Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment for allegedly firing his gun recklessly into Taylor’s apartment on March 13 during an overnight no-knock drug raid. Hankison was fired from the department for his actions that night.

The other two officers, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, had been placed on administrative leave, but were still with the department.

First degree wanton endangerment is defined as follows:

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 charge is a class D felony that carries a maximum penalty of a $10,000 fine and up to five years in prison.

When the three officers charged into Taylor’s apartment around 1 a.m. March 13, Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired one shot at them. The officers were not in uniform, and Walker said he thought it was a home invasion. Walker shot Mattingly in the leg. The three officers returned fire with more than 20 shots. Taylor was shot five times.

The city of Louisville paid a settlement of $12 million to Taylor’s family as part of a civil lawsuit.

Louisville officials had been preparing for unrest after this announcement, as protesters have been calling for the firing and arrest of all three officers involved in the shooting since May. The mayor established a 72 hour curfew of from 9 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. each day. The LMPD declared a state of emergency on Tuesday, canceling officers’ time off requests and extending their hours.

There is already some indication of dissatisfaction with the charge. From the Associated Press:

Immediately after the announcement, people were expressing frustration that the grand jury did not do more.

“Justice has NOT been served,” tweeted Linda Sarsour of Until Freedom, a group that has pushed for charges in the case. “Rise UP. All across this country. Everywhere. Rise up for #BreonnaTaylor.”

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Left-wing protester — who’s also a convicted felon — arrested after pointing gun at Louisville motorist

Sometimes those peaceful, gun-shunning leftists can surprise you.

Seems one of them who took part in a Louisville protest march Friday evening pointed a gun at a motorist — and to top it off, the arrestee is a convicted felon, WDRB-TV reported.

What are the details?

Louisville Metro Police on Saturday released video taken from a police helicopter that was circling over the march, and it shows a woman — identified as Robin Ash — pointing a gun at the driver of a dark gray Ford Taurus, the station said.

Ash is facing charges of wanton endangerment, possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, and criminal mischief, WDRB reported, citing court records.

But others at the scene defended Ash, saying the driver pointed a gun at demonstrators first, the station said.

In the police video, which contains no sound, the car in question is traveling in the opposite direction from the march — and one protester appears to be standing in the left-hand turn lane the car enters.

The car comes to a stop after passing the protester, and that’s when the trouble starts.

Several protesters approach the car, including a woman who pulls out a gun and points it at the motorist.

Image source: Facebook video screenshot via Louisville Metro Police Department

After another protester appears to intervene, the woman who pointed the gun walks away from the scene and seems to place something in her pocket or waistband.

Image source: Facebook video screenshot via Louisville Metro Police Department

Others remained near the car and WDRB said one person appears to kick the vehicle while other protesters try to get the crowd away. The police video shows the car drive a short distance down the street before it comes to a stop, and the station said the driver exits the car as police gather around the vehicle and protesters continue to move forward.

Another video, another story

Sheri Wright took her own video of the march and posted a clip of the incident involving the car on her Facebook page, WDRB said — and at a Sunday news conference at the Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, she said the motorist “tried to run over protesters.”

Wright’s video shows the Ford Taurus drive closely past at least two people marching in the street before coming to a stop, the station said.

More from WDRB:

As Wright approaches the car, video shows the man behind the wheel pulling out a gun and pointing it at the demonstrators near his car. Ash is not seen approaching the car in Wright’s video, which is focused on the driver’s window.

Wright follows the car as it moves a few feet down the road, and her video shows the man get out of the car and again point a gun at protesters as he inspects a dent in his vehicle. The man then gestures in the direction of police, who are seen moments later moving the crowd away from the vehicle.

Image source: Facebook video screenshot via Sheri Wright

Here’s Wright’s video. (Content warning: Language):

“What do you do when somebody threatens you with a gun? You know, you run or you defend — fight or flight,” Wright said, according to the station. “So I’m not going to knock anyone who felt her life was threatened, because I certainly felt my life was threatened, as did everyone there.”

She added to WDRB that police “surrounded themselves around this man and his vehicle in a protective fashion.”

“It seems very one-sided as far as where LMPD interjects itself into a conflict,” Wright also noted to the station. “From my observation, they want to protect the people who are opposed to the protesters against police brutality. I’ve seen this over and over and over again.”

What did police have to say?

Sgt. Lamont Washington said in a statement that the motorist wasn’t arrested because he was a victim in the incident, WDRB said.

“LMPD released the video to show the whole story,” Washington added to the station. “A still photo or single angle often doesn’t do that. No charges are expected of the driver whose name will not be released since he was the victim.”

(H/T: Bearing Arms)

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Officer involved in Breonna Taylor’s death sends message to fellow officers slamming protesters, FBI: ‘Don’t put up with their s**t’

A Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officer sent an email to approximately 1,000 fellow officers at 2 a.m. Tuesday criticizing protesters, city officials, department leadership, and the FBI as he awaits a decision on whether he will be charged in Breonna Taylor’s death, Vice News reported.

The email, written by Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and obtained by Vice News’ Roberto Aram Ferdman, foreshadowed a “rough” period to come as the city braces for potential unrest if Mattingly, Officer Myles Cosgrove, and Sgt. Brett Hankison are not charged in Taylor’s death this week.

“No matter the ineptitude in upper command or the mayor’s office, this is one of the greatest jobs on earth,” Mattingly wrote. “With that being said, these next few days are going to be tough. They are going to be long, they are going to be frustrating. They will put a tremendous amount of stress on your families.”

The Louisville Metro PD declared a state of emergency Monday in advance of an expected grand jury decision on whether to charge the three officers who executed the no-knock search warrant on Taylor’s home the night they shot and killed her. Hankison was fired, but Mattingly and Cosgrove are still with the department on administrative leave.

Mattingly told the other officers in the email that they didn’t deserve the abuse they will potentially face from protesters in coming days.

“You DO NOT DESERVE to be in this position,” Mattingly wrote. “The position that allows thugs to get in your face and yell, curse, and degrade you. Throw bricks, bottles, and urine on you and expect you to do nothing. It goes against EVERYTHING we were all taught in the academy. The position that if you make a mistake, during one of the most stressful times in your career, the department and FBI (who aren’t cops and would piss their pants if they had to hold the line) go after you for civil rights violations. Your civil rights mean nothing, but the criminal has total autonomy.”

Mattingly defended the officers’ actions the night Taylor was killed. After the officers broke in the door of Taylor’s apartment, Taylor’s boyfriend shot at them, saying he believed it was a home invasion, and they returned fire with approximately 20 shots. Five of them hit Taylor, killing her.

“Regardless of the outcome today or Wednesday, I know we did the legal, moral, and ethical thing that night,” Mattingly wrote. “It’s sad how the good guys are demonized, and criminals are canonized. Put that aside for a while, keep your focus and do your jobs that you are trained and capable of doing. Don’t put up with their s**t, and go home to those lovely families and relationships.”

The officers had a warrant for Taylor because she was believed to be connected to her ex-boyfriend’s drug trafficking operation. No drugs or money were found at her home.

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Louisville police declare state of emergency due to fear of riots that could follow Breonna Taylor decision

The Louisville Metropolitan Police Department declared a state of emergency for the city Monday in anticipation of the unrest that could follow a grand jury decision on whether or not to charge the three officers involved in the raid that killed Breonna Taylor in March, NBC News reported.

“In anticipation of Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s announcement in the Breonna Taylor case, I am declaring a state of emergency for the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD),” a memo from Chief Robert J. Schroeder to officers read.

What do we know?

The emergency declaration went into effect immediately Monday, and all officer time-off requests that had not already been approved were canceled. Under the emergency guidelines, officers will work 12-hour shifts.

Windows of federal buildings in the city, including the courthouse, have been boarded up. Hearings scheduled for this week have been changed to video conferences.

Attorney General Cameron is expected to announce this week whether charges will be filed against Sgt. Brett Hankison, Officer Myles Cosgrove, and Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly in Taylor’s death. Hankison was fired from the department for “an extreme indifference to the value of human life,” while the other two have been placed on administrative leave.

The city of Louisville paid Taylor’s family $12 million last week to settle a civil lawsuit.

What do we not know?

It is currently unknown whether grand jury deliberations have begun or not, so it is also unknown exactly when an announcement will be made on the fate of the three LMPD officers.


Taylor was a 26-year-old emergency medical technician. She was in her apartment with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, when police officers in plain clothes burst in after midnight March 13. Officers had a warrant due to her connection with her ex-boyfriend, who is a convicted drug dealer.

Walker, allegedly believing a home invasion was taking place, shot one of the officers in the leg. The officers returned fire, shooting more than 20 bullets into the home, hitting Taylor five times. She died at the scene.

The incident was not widely publicized until about two months after it occurred, after which it gained national media attention. Along with the death of Ahmaud Arbery, which also made national news in May, and later the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the killings of black individuals sparked nationwide protests and riots that have persisted in the four months since.

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Louisville federal buildings boarded up as city braces for decision on whether cops will face charges for Breonna Taylor’s death

With a decision on whether or not to charge the police officers involved in Breonna Taylor’s killing anticipated this week, some federal buildings have been boarded up and in-person hearings have gone remote in Louisville, Fox News reported.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron will present the findings from the Taylor investigation to a grand jury this week and after that is expected to make an announcement about the fate of the three officers who executed a no-knock warrant on Taylor’s home in March and fatally shot her.

The federal courthouse downtown and the offices attached to the courthouse have had the windows boarded up. The courthouse will be closed to the public Monday through Friday, and scheduled in-person hearings will be conducted as video conferences.

Fox News reported that there was not an official reason given for the changes, but an unnamed official shed some light on the situation:

The order did not give a reason for the temporary closure but said it came at the request of the General Services Administration, which manages the buildings. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Office in Louisville will be closed Sept. 21-25 “due to a court order,” according to the agency’s website.

An unnamed courthouse official told the Louisville Courier-Journal that the buildings would be closed this week in anticipation of a major announcement, but did not elaborate.

City and federal properties have been targeted by rioters in various cities over the past several months in response to police violence against minorities, including Taylor. A federal courthouse in Portland, for example, has been repeatedly vandalized by protesters during a streak of more than 100 straight days of protests.

The city of Louisville paid a $12 million settlement to Taylor’s family last week as part of a civil lawsuit over her killing.

Taylor was killed March 13 when officers broke into her home on a warrant that was part of a drug investigation after midnight. After Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired at the plainclothes officers upon entry, officers returned fire, hitting Taylor five times.

Walker, a legal gun owner, said he didn’t know the officers were law enforcement when he shot at them. He was initially charged with attempted murder of a police officer after hitting one of them in the leg, but the charges were later dropped. Walker has sued the city of Louisville for compensatory damages and to protect himself from being arrested again in connection with the incident.

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City of Louisville will announce ‘substantial’ financial settlement with the family of Breonna Taylor today

Multiple sources are reporting that the City of Louisville plans to announce on Tuesday what is being described as a “substantial” financial settlement in order to avoid further litigation with the family of Breonna Taylor, who was shot and killed by Louisville police officers on March 13.

In addition to the financial aspects of the settlement, the city is also expected to agree to a series of police reforms requested by the family, including a policy that all warrants be approved by a police commander before they are submitted to a judge for approval.

Additionally, a Jefferson County grand jury is expected to weigh possible criminal charges against the officers involved in the shooting this week.

The lawsuit, which was filed on April 27, alleged that Louisville police officers were negligent in the execution of a warrant for Taylor’s apartment and that they used excessive force. An amended complaint subsequently claimed that Louisville police were attempting to clear out the block where Taylor lived in order to gentrify it, an accusation which the city has strongly denied.

Taylor’s case has served as a flashpoint for a series of protests that have roiled Louisville and fed the flames of anti-police protests nationwide. Although the warrant in question listed Taylor’s name and address, it was clear that police’s investigation was centered on a suspected drug dealer named Jamarcus Glover, who had already been arrested by police at a location 10 miles from Taylor’s residence before the ill-fated raid on Taylor’s apartment. It remains unclear why Taylor’s residence was listed on the warrant, and no drugs or money were found in her apartment as a result of the raid.

Police claim that they knocked and announced themselves before entering Taylor’s apartment, but Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, has claimed that he and Taylor had no idea who was at their door on the night of the raid and that they believed they were being victimized by attempted robbers. When the door crashed in, Walker fired a shot at what he believed were the intruders, striking one of the officers in the leg. Walker was initially charged with attempted murder of the police officer, but those charges were later dropped amid public outcry.

Two of the three officers involved in the raid returned fire, killing Taylor. One of the officers, Brett Hankinson, has been fired by the police department after an investigation determined that he repeatedly fired “blindly” into the apartment. The other two officers involved in the raid have been reassigned to administrative duty while the case is being investigated.

Taylor’s case has rocked the city of Louisville and its police department and led in part to the dismissal of police chief Steve Conrad. Protesters have demanded that the other two police officers in the raid be fired and charged with murder and have also sought other reforms to the Louisville Police Department.

Black Lives Matter Black lives matter mafia Fernando martinez Intelwars La bodeguita de mima Louisville Nulu social justice

Cuban immigrant says activist group using ‘mafia tactics’ to intimidate Louisville business owners

An activist group is threatening Louisville business owners with possible repercussions if they fail to submit to their list of social justice-related demands.

Phelix Crittenden, who is allegedly the “lead supply organizer for BLM Louisville chapter,” created a group called “Blacks Organizing Strategic Success.” Its website claims to be a “creative cooperative designed to level the playing field” and “empowering minorities with business resources & networking opportunities.”

Fernando Martinez, a partner of the Olé Restaurant Group, believes the group uses “mafia tactics” to intimidate Louisville business owners. Martinez, who is a Cuban immigrant, became incensed after his restaurant, as well as other businesses, were given a list of demands from the activist group.

Businesses in East Market District of downtown Louisville, also known as NuLu (New Louisville), were given a list of demands such as:

  • Adequately represent the Black population of Louisville by having a minimum of 23% Black staff
  • Purchase a minimum of 23% inventory from Black retailers or make a recurring monthly donation of 1.5% of net sales to a local Black nonprofit or organization
  • Require diversity and inclusion training for all staff members on a bi-annual basis
  • And display a visible sign that increases awareness and shows support for the reparations movement

The Blacks Organizing Strategic Success website created a “Social Justice Rating System,” where businesses are given a grade for how many of the demands they submit to. The organization gives businesses a sort of social credit score, “Ally,” “Complicit,” and “Failed.”

“We’re holding Louisville businesses accountable, and we’re starting in Nulu. We will give businesses the standard 25-30 days to remedy any violation,” the site states. “We will offer them a realistic opportunity & resources to raise their grade.”

If business owners who do not comply with the demands, “protesters would respond by launching negative reviews and social media posts about the businesses,” according to WDRB-TV.

“I hate the word demands,” Rick Murphy, the president of the NuLu Business Association, said. “It’s bullying, it’s mean. We look at what they’ve given us as goals. I don’t embrace demands from anyone. No one can demand something of me, particularly if they accompany that demand with some sort of threat or doing harm to businesses. Right now is the wrong time to try to do harm to businesses.”

Some NuLu business owners were happy to agree to the terms, including Angie Garner, who is the owner of Garner Narratives, an art gallery. Garner even signed a contract, “addressing the gentrification of Clarksdale with some modest steps forward.”

“I knew not to get distracted by any impulses toward hand-wringing and defensiveness, just get busy,” Garner told the Courier-Journal. “It’s important to stay clear that what matters is what happened to the people in Clarksdale, and what opportunities and resources can be made available to Black Louisvillians.”

“Maybe that history will help business owners here understand why it’s not nearly enough, just to be welcoming to Black people who are looking to spend money with them,” she said.

Murphy said that he believes the group’s demands are legitimate, adding that he and other business owners had failed the black community when it comes to making NuLu inclusive for everyone, according to the Courier-Journal.

“I as an individual and we as a group totally endorse what they want,” Murphy said. “We consider those valid goals that we hope to meet in the relatively near future.”

However, Martinez and other Cubans do not plan on giving in to the demands.

Martinez said several protesters presented him with the list of demands and warned that he “better put the letter on the door so your business is not f***ed with.”

“There comes a time in life that you have to make a stand and you have to really prove your convictions and what you believe in,” Martinez wrote on Facebook. “… All good people need to denounce this. How can you justified (sic) injustice with more injustice?”

Martinez responded that as a Cuban immigrant with black relatives, he does not need diversity training.

“Although our community has achieved great success in this city, we continue to miss our homeland, our neighborhoods we grew up in and our families we left behind. We did not want to leave all of those, but we had to,” Luis David Fuentes said. “We had to escape the socialist government that took away our grandparents’ private businesses in 1959 and continue to restrict our civil and political rights today.”

Fuentes said so many Cubans risked their lives for “freedom, respect, and prosperity” in America, but now these values are under attack “because of the diffusion and expansion of Marxist ideas.”

Martinez held a rally at his La Bodeguita de Mima restaurant on Sunday afternoon with American and Cuban flags displayed. Supporters held up signs that read “No 2 Socialism In America,” and “Justice 4 All.”

“La Bodeguita is open to everybody,” Martinez said on Sunday. “If you’re gay, this is your home. If you’re black, this is your home. If you’re white, this is your home. If you’re human, this is your home.”

“How can I be called a bigot and a racist when my family is black? When my son is gay?” he asked. “I’m the proud father of a gay son, and I’m gonna fight for him against anybody.”

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Louisville photographer supportive of Black Lives Matter killed by activist who shot into protest camp

A photographer who was sympathetic to Black Lives Matter and who had been documenting protests in Louisville, Kentucky, was shot and killed in a protest camp Saturday night when one protester fired into the camp, allegedly due to a conflict with another protester, the Courier Journal reported.

Tyler Gerth, 27, was reportedly shot in the face as an innocent bystander when Steven Nelson Lopez showed up at the protest camp and fired his gun into the air before shooting into the camp. Other armed bystanders returned fire at Lopez, shooting him in the leg and preventing further potential casualties.

Lopez had been a participant in the Louisville protests for at least the previous 12 days, having been sighted there multiple times by protesters and reporters. He has been charged with murder and first-degree wanton endangerment.

Other protesters said Lopez had been escorted away from the camp multiple times leading up to the Saturday night shooting after getting into altercations. Lopez had previously been arrested on June 17 for inciting a riot and disorderly conduct. He was armed with two fully loaded handguns at the time of his previous arrest.

A witness recorded video of Lopez shooting into the crowd on Saturday.

Gerth was a photographer who regularly posted pictures of Black Lives Matter protests in the wake of Breonna Taylor’s death at the hands of Louisville Metro Police. He was apparently not the target of Lopez’s attack on the protest camp.

“Tyler was incredibly kind, tender-hearted and generous, holding deep convictions and faith,” Gerth’s family wrote in a statement. “It was this sense of justice that drove Tyler to be part of the peaceful demonstrations advocating for the destruction of the systemic racism within our society’s systems. This, combined with his passion of photography led to a strong need within him to be there, documenting the movement, capturing and communicating the messages of peace and justice.”

‘He was my hero’ | Father remembers son shot and killed during downtown protests

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One dead after shots fired into crowd at Breonna Taylor protest

One person is dead and another injured after a gunman fired shots into the crowd at a Breonna Taylor protest in Kentucky.

Demonstrators gathered at Jefferson Square Park in downtown Louisville on Saturday in a call for justice for the police shooting of Breonna Taylor. Around 9 p.m., the Louisville Metro Police Department started receiving calls about gunfire at the park.

Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department personnel arrived at the park to perform life-saving measures on a man, who eventually died at the scene. Another person from the incident was found near the Hall of Justice, which is across the street from the park. That person was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries.

Police evacuated the park, and are currently “trying to gather as much information as possible in order to identify all who were involved in the incident.” Police have not announced any possible suspects or arrests in the shooting.

An unverified video was posted on Twitter that shows a man opening fire into the park. The graphic video reportedly shows one of the alleged victims of the shooting on the ground and receiving medical attention.

“Fatal shooting reported at Jefferson Square Park. Another person injured. Still waiting to get updates and details from #lmpd,” WAVE-TV reporter Phylicia Ashley wrote on Twitter. “Witness videos allege a man was asked to leave the memorial and protest space then came back with a gun and started shooting into the crowd.”

Following the shooting, the LMPD announced that “peaceful gatherings can continue during the day,” but people will no longer be able to stay overnight at the park, and no tents are permitted.

“I am deeply saddened by the violence that erupted in Jefferson Square Park tonight, where those who have been voicing their concerns have been gathered,” Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said on Twitter. “It is a tragedy that this area of peaceful protest is now a crime scene.”

At least seven people were shot on May 28 during a Breonna Taylor protest in Louisville.

Demonstrations were being held over the death of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old black woman who was shot in her Louisville home by undercover police who were serving a no-knock warrant. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, believed the police were home invaders and shot at the officers, striking one of the cops.

Taylor was shot eight times. Police were serving a search warrant for a narcotics investigation. No drugs were reportedly found at Taylor’s apartment.

Louisville has since banned no-knock search warrants.

Protesters have been calling for the officers involved in Taylor’s death to be charged. One of the officers involved in the shooting, Brett Hankison, has been fired from the LMPD.

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Police officer involved in fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor to be fired, Louisville mayor says

One of the police officers involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor will be fired, according to Louisville, Kentucky, Mayor Greg Fischer (D).

“Today, I’m announcing that @LMPD Chief Schroeder is initiating termination procedures against Officer Brett Hankison,” Fischer wrote Friday afternoon on Twitter.

The mayor’s tweet included a link to a Louisville government website that had more details on the announcement.

“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,” the mayor said.

The statute Fischer was referencing is KRS Chapter 67c point 326 (1) (f) which states:

When a police officer has been charged with a violation of departmental rules or regulations, no public statements shall be made concerning the alleged violation by any person or persons of the consolidated local government or the police officer so charged, until final disposition of the charges.

Hankison is one of three Louisville police officers who were involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor on March 13. Three plainclothes police officers forcefully entered Taylor’s apartment while executing a no-knock warrant. The officers were conducting a narcotics investigation at the time, but no drugs were found inside Taylor’s apartment.

Taylor, 26, and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, were asleep at the time. Walker believed the plainclothes police were home invaders, so he shot at the officers. The cops returned fire, and Taylor was fatally shot eight times.

Hankison allegedly “wantonly and blindly” fired 10 rounds into Taylor’s apartment “without supporting facts” that his “deadly force was directed at a person against whom presented an immediate threat of danger or serious injury” of himself or others, according to Hankison’s termination letter released Friday by the Louisville Metro Police Department.

The letter added that three bullets that Hankison fired “traveled into the apartment next to Ms. Taylor’s endangering the three lives in that apartment.”

The LMPD Chief Rob Schroeder said Hankison was not trained to use deadly force in this fashion, and his conduct is a “shock to the conscience.”

The letter notes that Hankison had previously been “disciplined for reckless conduct” that injured an innocent person in 2019.

“Your conduct demands your termination,” Schroeder wrote. “I have the utmost confidence in my decision to terminate your employment for the best interest of the Louisville Metro Police Department and our community.”

The two other officers involved in the Breonna Taylor case, Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, have been placed on administrative reassignment.

Previously, city officials noted that action against the three police officers could not take place until the investigations were complete. There was no bodycam video of the deadly incident.

WDRB-TV reported that the LMPD is also investigating allegations that Hankison made inappropriate sexual advances toward at least four women. The mayor demanded that Hankison be removed from the Louisville Police Merit Board after the allegations surfaced.

Sam Aguiar, an attorney for Taylor’s family, said, “It’s about time and this is the poster child of the dirtiest of dirty cops and the most dangerous of dangerous cops. I hope to God he’s never back to working our streets again.”

Breonna taylor Breonna's law Intelwars Louisville Louisville metropolitan police department No-knock warrant

Louisville bans no-knock warrants with ordinance bearing Breonna Taylor’s name

The Louisville Metro Council voted Thursday night to ban no-knock search warrants and named the ordinance after Breonna Taylor, the woman who was shot eight times and killed in March by police serving a no-knock warrant at her home in the middle of the night, the Courier Journal reported.

The ordinance also requires the use of body cameras by officers when serving warrants.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said he will sign the ordinance, known as Breonna’s Law, as soon as possible. No-knock warrants in the city had already been suspended following Taylor’s death.

Taylor’s mother, Tanika Palmer, said the law is a way for her daughter to continue making a lifesaving impact even in death. Taylor, 26, was an EMT.

“All Breonna wanted to do was save lives,” Palmer said before the vote at Thursday night’s meeting. “So it’s important this law passes, because with that, she’ll get to continue to do that, even in her death.”

Louisville outlaws no-knock warrants after shooting death of Breonna Taylor

Although relatively more national media focus has been given to the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Taylor’s death and the response from the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department in the months since she was killed has been concerning.

Police officers — Myles Cosgrove, Jonathan Mattingly, and Brett Hankison — claim they identified themselves before breaking in Taylor’s home after midnight on March 13. But, they asked for and were granted a no-knock warrant, and numerous witnesses from the apartment complex have contradicted that claim. Taylor was believed by police to be connected with drug trafficking activity. No drugs were found at the residence.

Officers broke down the door with a battering ram (although the police report claims there was no forced entry) and were met with one gunshot from Kenneth Walker, Taylor’s boyfriend, who was a legal gun owner. Walker said he didn’t know they were police and that he was firing a warning shot, not shooting to kill. The officers were not in uniform. They had reportedly been assigned body cameras, but they were not active during the incident. Walker’s gunshot hit one officer in the leg.

The officers returned fire from outside the apartment into Taylor’s apartment, with some of the gunfire going into a neighbor’s apartment as well. Taylor was shot eight times. Walker was left inside the apartment with Breonna’s dead body. When he called 911, it’s unclear whether he was aware that the men who killed his girlfriend were police. He was charged with attempted murder shortly after the incident, but the charges were later dropped. None of the officers has been charged or fired. They are on administrative reassignment, with pay.

The Louisville Metropolitan Police Department recently released an incident report that listed Taylor as having suffered no injuries and included no details of the incident in the narrative section of the report. The Courier Journal is suing LMPD for the investigation file on the case.

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Louisville police and National Guard kill one man after being shot at while clearing a protest

One man was killed early Monday morning after members of the Kentucky National Guard and the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department were shot at and returned fire while attempting to disperse a group of protesters, NBC News reported.

Officials have not publicly identified who fired the first shot, nor have they specified who fired the fatal shot or shots.

“Officers and soldiers began to clear the lot and at some point were shot at,” LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said in a statement, NBC News reported. “Both LMPD and National Guard members returned fire, we have one man dead at scene.”

Kentucky Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear also issued a statement on the shooting. Neither statement specified whether the person who was killed was confirmed to be the person who opened fire on the authorities.

“Last night at round 12 a.m., it is our understanding that the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) and the Kentucky National Guard were dispatched to 26th and Broadway. While working to disperse a crowd, LMPD and the Kentucky National Guard were fired upon. LMPD and the Kentucky National Guard returned fire resulting in a death. Given the seriousness of the situation, I have authorized the Kentucky State Police to independently investigate the event.”

Protests in Louisville have focused on the fatal shooting of 26-year-old Breonna Taylor by Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officers who were serving a no-knock drug warrant at her home after midnight in March. When officers broke into the house, Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, shot at them, hitting one officer.

Walker said he believed the officers, who were in plain clothes, were burglars when he fired at them. He was arrested and charged with attempted murder of a police officer, although the charges were later dropped.

The 911 call Walker made right after Taylor was killed reveals the inconsolable distress he was in as he tried to explain what happened.

AUDIO: 911 call from Kenneth Walker night Breonna Taylor died

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Louisville postal inspector contradicts key police claim that led to no-knock warrant at Breonna Taylor’s home

On the night Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officers killed Breonna Taylor, they had a no-knock search warrant, which they executed at close to 1 a.m. The information used to obtain that warrant, however, is now being called into question, WDRB-TV reported.

What’s the story? Breonna Taylor was a 26-year-old emergency medical technician. On March 13, three officers executed the no-knock search warrant at her apartment on suspicion that Taylor was connected to a drug trafficking operation. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired one shot and hit an officer in the leg. Taylor, who was unarmed, was shot eight times and killed. Walker has been charged with attempted murder of a police officer.

That same night, police arrested Jamarcus Glover. Police say they believed Glover was using Taylor’s home to store drugs that were sometimes delivered by mail. This belief was based on surveillance footage showing Glover picking up a package from Taylor’s home and taking it to a “known drug house,” according to the warrant. Taylor’s car had also been seen at Glover’s residence in the past.

What’s the problem? In the request for the warrant, police said they “verified with a U.S. postal inspector that Jamarcus Glover has been receiving packages” at Taylor’s home. However, Tony Gooden, the U.S. postal inspector in Louisville, said police never contacted his office to verify that information.

Gooden also told WDRB that there were “no packages of interest” going to Taylor’s home. He said if LMPD went outside of his jurisdiction to verify information about packages to Taylor’s residence, that would be highly unusual and inappropriate. From WDRB:

It is “possible” that Louisville police asked a mail inspector from another jurisdiction of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service for help, Gooden said, but he said his office almost surely would have been notified of an outside agent’s involvement.

That didn’t happen, he said. If a postal inspector from another agency did review packages at Taylor’s apartment without notifying him, it would be inappropriate.

“They are coming into my area of responsibility looking into something that I very well may also be looking into,” Gooden said. “They shouldn’t come into my area of responsibility doing anything without notifying me.”

No-knock warrant justified? Legal representatives for Taylor’s family and for Walker say Walker fired at officers because he didn’t know who was breaking into the apartment. They say police did not identify themselves before coming in. Police officials maintain that the officers did identify themselves, even with the no-knock warrant.

Police requested a no-knock entry warrant “due to the nature of how these drug traffickers operate. These drug traffickers have a history of attempting to destroy evidence, have cameras on location that compromise Detectives once an approach to the dwelling is made, and have a history of fleeing from law enforcement.”

Police found no drugs during the search, and Taylor’s home did not have any cameras.

Some legal experts question whether the no-knock warrant was justified, even if the information used to obtain it was true.

“If it was appropriate there, then every routine drug transaction would justify grounds for no-knock,” University of Arkansas law professor Brian Gallini told the Courier Journal.

Breonna taylor Intelwars kentucky Louisville police brutality police misconduct

Black woman killed by police in her own home as officers raid the wrong house, lawsuit claims

Breanna Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT worker in Louisville, Kentucky, was shot and killed by police in March when officers executed a search warrant at her home — and a lawsuit against the police department claims the officers were at the wrong home, according to NBC News.

What happened? On March 13, at about 12:30 a.m., three officers with the Louisville Metro Police Department knocked on the door of Taylor’s home, where she lived with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker. The department says the officers announced their presence as police who had a search warrant, but the lawsuit by Taylor’s family claims the officers were in plainclothes and did not identify themselves.

The officers then broke into the home, where they were met by gunfire. Walker, who the lawsuit says is a licensed gun owner who kept firearms for home protection, allegedly believed someone was breaking into the home.

Taylor was shot eight times and died. Walker was arrested and charged with attempted murder on a police officer and assault, having allegedly shot one officer. The officer underwent surgery, according to the Courier Journal.

The officers involved — Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, and Myles Cosgrove — have been placed on administrative reassignment, pending the outcome of the investigation.

Family demands answers: The family is represented by Benjamin Crump, a prominent civil rights attorney who has represented numerous families in similar situations, including Ahmaud Arbery, the Georgia black man who was fatally shot in February by two men who chased him down because they allegedly believed him to be a burglar.

The family’s lawsuit claims that Louisville police were searching for a suspect named Jamarcus Glover, who is facing drug and gun charges, and had already detained Glover at his home before the execution of the warrant that led to Taylor’s death. Glover reportedly lives more than 10 miles from Taylor’s home. No drugs were found in Taylor’s home.

“Despite the tragic circumstances surrounding her death, the department has not provided any answers regarding the facts and circumstances of how this tragedy occurred, nor have they taken responsibility for her senseless killing,” Crump said in a statement.

The lawsuit accuses the officers of wrongful death, excessive force, and gross negligence, and seeks compensatory and punitive damages, and legal fees through a jury trial.

Investigation ongoing: The Louisville Metro Police Department would not comment about the case in detail, citing the ongoing investigation. The department said there is no body camera footage available because the division in which the officers serve does not utilize them.

“We held a press conference about this shooting when it occurred to detail what we were able,” spokeswoman Jessie Halladay wrote in an email to the Courier Journal. “The Public Integrity investigation remains ongoing, therefore it would not be appropriate for us to comment.”

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Federal judge punches back at Dem mayor who ‘criminalized’ Easter drive-in church services

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, a Democrat, issued a legal directive on Thursday prohibiting churches from gathering for Easter services, even if congregants remained in their cars for a “drive-in” service.

We’re saying no church worshiping,” the mayor declared.

On Saturday, U.S. District Judge Justin Walker thoroughly rebuked the mayor for his mandate.

In an emergency ruling, Walker granted a local Louisville church, On Fire, a temporary restraining order against Fischer’s directive, allowing the church, and presumably others in Louisville, to move forward with modified Easter gatherings.

The church sued Louisville on Friday, claiming Fischer’s order violated their constitutional rights, the Louisville Courier Journal reported.

“On Holy Thursday, an American mayor criminalized the communal celebration of Easter. That sentence is one that this Court never expected to see outside the pages of a dystopian novel, or perhaps the pages of The Onion,” Walker wrote. “But two days ago, citing the need for social distancing during the current pandemic, Louisville’s Mayor Greg Fischer ordered Christians not to attend Sunday services, even if they remained in their cars to worship — and even though it’s Easter.

“The Mayor’s decision is stunning. And it is, ‘beyond all reason,’ unconstitutional,” Walker ruled.

Walker’s ruling only granted a temporary restraining order; he did not issue a final ruling. He will hear oral arguments beginning April 14.

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Physician arrested, charged with strangulation after attack on teen girls. They said he was angry they were outside amid social distancing.

Police arrested a Kentucky physician and charged him with strangulation after an attack on teenage girls caught on video — and the girls told WLKY-TV the good doctor was angry they were outside amid social distancing guidelines put in place to quell the spread of the coronavirus.

What went down?

Three witnesses said the incident began when the attacker and a woman accompanying him confronted a group of nine teens who were watching the sunset at the Norton Commons Amphitheater, the Courier-Journal reported, adding that it’s an upper-class neighborhood.

One of the witnesses contacted the station Sunday saying the alleged attacker — identified as John Rademaker, a Louisville-area physician — and the woman cursed at the teens Friday evening for being outside while COVID-19 social distancing guidelines are in place.

Video of the incident shows Rademaker exchanging words with the girls, after which he points at “this asshole right here” — and then shoves at least two girls.

Image source: Twitter video screenshot

Then he bends over before kneeling down and appears to put his hands around the neck of a third girl, who was lying on the ground. The woman with him had her hands around the third girl’s leg.

Image source: Twitter video screenshot

Here’s the clip. (Content warning: Language):

WLKY said video it obtained showed the attack stopping after a young man ran up and told Rademaker to back off. The attacker and the woman left the scene immediately after, witnesses told the Courier-Journal.

Police told the station that the victim in the attack suffered minor injuries; the paper noted that she was checked at the scene by medical personnel and didn’t require hospitalization.

What happened to Rademaker?

Rademaker — a 57-year-old from Prospect — was arrested Tuesday afternoon and charged with first-degree strangulation and three counts of harassment with physical contact, the Courier-Journal reported, citing a Louisville Metro Police statement.

Rademaker was released from jail later Tuesday on a personal recognizance bond, the paper added, citing online court records.

The Courier-Journal noted that Rademaker didn’t have an attorney listed in online court records as of Wednesday morning, and a May 8 arraignment hearing is scheduled at Jefferson District Court.

Baptist Health officials told WLKY that Rademaker is with an anesthesia group Baptist Health contracts with, and he was put on administrative leave following the incident.

That group released the following statement Tuesday, the station said:

SIAC, a division of One Anesthesia PLLC is aware of the incident that occurred in Norton Commons with one of its physicians, who was not on official call or due to report to the hospital in any official capacity. With that said, the partners of SIAC, a division of One Anesthesia PLLC have decided to place the physician that appeared in the video on administrative leave as of April 5th pending further investigation. Our well wishes extend to all parties involved and we will continue to monitor this situation as new information develops.

What did police have to say?

“Obviously, we do not advise individuals concerned about social distancing to take matters into their own hands and confront people about it, especially in any physical way,” police said in a statement, WKLY noted. “We ask people who are concerned about large gatherings to call 311 or 911 to report their concerns.”

Louisville physician accused of getting physical with teens over social distancing