Read a PDF of our statement here.

Today, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational and Fund, Inc. (LDF), the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky (ACLU-KY), and the law firm Emery Celli Brinckerhoff Abady Ward & Maazel LLP (ECBAWM), filed a request for a temporary restraining order (TRO) on behalf of plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD)’s use of military force against peaceful protestors. Specifically, the plaintiffs seek to stop LMPD’s unnecessary and dangerous use of crowd-control weaponry such as tear gas and flash bangs during upcoming protests of LMPD’s killing of Breonna Taylor, starting as soon as today, August 25.  The request comes as part of a case LDF, ACLU-KY, and ECBAWM filed on July 30, 2020, against the City of Louisville challenging the LMPD’s repeated use of military-type force and intimidation in response to peaceful protesters demonstrating against police violence.

Because of a widespread pattern of unconstitutional conduct by the LMPD, protestors reasonably fear that if they participate in this week’s scheduled demonstrations, they will face a significant risk of serious injuries. Many have already been forced to stop protesting out of fear for their safety. Without the court’s immediate intervention, plaintiffs will be forced to either forgo their right to protest in this unprecedented moment in history or risk serious bodily injury for exercising that right. The Constitution does not permit LMPD to force such a choice.

Read the filed TRO here.


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.

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