City restricts access before decision in Breonna Taylor case

Clay Curtis
September 22, 2020

The department had previously announced all officers' requested days off and unapproved vacation time were cancelled since the announcement of the grand jury's decision was expected soon.

Taylor was a 26-year-old emergency medical technician. After Walker let off one shot, fearing the police were intruders, the officers responded with more than 20, including multiple that hit Taylor and killed her.

City officials also said they would carry out major reforms, including requiring police to conduct extensive risk assessments before applying for a warrant and asking commanders to approve all search warrant applications submitted to a judge. Myles Cosgrove and Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, who fired their weapons into Taylor's apartment on March 13; Det. The probe will examine whether the officers violated any police policies during the incident, and could result in their firing - another call that has been put forth by demonstrators, especially if police are not charged.

Four federal buildings in downtown Louisville - the Gene Snyder U.S. Courthouse & Customhouse, the Romano L. Mazzoli Federal Building, the U.S. Attorney's Office building and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement building - have been classified as "high-risk" targets by Homeland Security ahead of the potential civil unrest linked to the decision on Taylor's case, according to Tom Moore, the facilities manager of the General Services Administration, which manages the buildings. Taylor's family has said Walker believed the home was being broken into and fired his legally owned gun to defend himself.

The Police Department said on its Twitter account that it was also preparing for the announcement by placing "No Parking" signs on downtown streets.

The restrictions are going in place "to ensure the area is as safe as possible for those coming downtown to express their First Amendment Rights, as well as those who live and work in the area", the Louisville Metro Police Department said in a statement on Tuesday morning.

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Aaron Jordan, founder of Black Complex Louisville, told NBC affiliate WAVE that the "subliminal" moves felt like an indication of what people can expect the grand jury decision to be.

"If it is needed, we will authorize it", Beshear said at a news conference.

Journalist and cultural critic Jemele Hill offered a similar sentiment when she tweeted Monday that "we all know what this means".

But throughout the summer, many protesters as well as Taylor's family have focused on criminal charges for the officers involved in the raid. The lawsuit alleged that police used excessive force and that the search was grossly negligent.

"We must not lose focus on what the real job is", Palmer said.

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