Today, Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron released the audio recordings of the grand jury proceedings that resulted in former Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officer Brett Hankison being charged with three counts of wanton endangerment in the first degree for reportedly shooting into the apartment next door to Breonna Taylor. None of the three officers involved in Taylor’s death have been charged for her killing.
Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) released the following statement in response to the release of the recordings, which were ordered by a court to be released by noon today:
“Breonna Taylor’s family, the residents of Louisville, and those across the country who have advocated for accountability for the killing of Ms. Taylor want to understand how the evidence in this case was presented to the grand jury. The release of these audio recordings is a critical first step in that process. LDF will immediately begin its review of the recordings – with pro bono support from the law firm Orrick – and make public its assessment of the case in the near future.”
More than six months after Ms. Taylor was killed, and despite a decision from the grand jury, not a single police officer has been held accountable for Ms. Taylor’s death and numerous questions remain. In the days after the grand jury’s decision, a juror indicated that the public had not been given an accurate account of how the case was brought before the panel.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has mounted its own investigation, while the LMPD proceeds with its internal investigation of the officers involved in Taylor’s killing. LDF, along with over 200 national and local organizations, also demands that the U.S. Department of Justice conduct a civil rights investigation of the LMPD to determine if it has engaged in a pattern or practice of unlawful policing.
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.