4 Louisville officers face federal charges in Breonna Taylor investigation, Merrick Garland says

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Four current and former Louisville officers face federal charges in connection with fatal police shooting of Breonna Taylor – including excessive force, tampering with search warrant information and stage a cover-up, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Thursday.

Kelly Goodlett and Joshua Jaynes are accused of falsifying information on a search warrant before and after Taylor, 26, was killed in March 2020, sparking a wave of racial justice protests across the country. Garland said officers not only violated Taylor’s Fourth Amendment rights, but also knew that tampering would lead to a dangerous situation — one that “resulted in Ms. Taylor’s death.” The attorney general said Goodlett and Jaynes allegedly met in a garage after the murder and conspired to lie to investigators about the circumstances leading up to it.

“Breonna Taylor should still be alive,” Garland said at a press conference.

Former police officer Brett Hankison is charged with willfully using unconstitutional force to fire 10 shots through Taylor’s patio door during the raid. Hankison faced three charges of wanton endangerment for firing the shots without a clear target, but was acquitted at trial in March.

Louisville Police Sgt. Kyle Meany also faces federal charges, Garland said Thursday.

Breonna Taylor’s death sparked police reform in Louisville. But the way forward is complicated.

Jaynes had previously been fired by Louisville police for allegedly violating department policies while preparing the arrest warrant for Taylor’s home. Yvette Gentry, then acting chief, wrote in a pre-termination letter that Janes “lied” when he wrote in the warrant application that he had verified through a U.S. postal inspector that Taylor was receiving packages related to her ex’s alleged drug activity. -buddy.

Jaynes files a lawsuit to get her job back.

The Justice Department and the FBI have long been investigating the Taylor case for possible civil rights violations. In April 2021, Garland announced a “model or practice” investigation of the Louisville Police Department to determine whether the agency had engaged in abuse of power and illegal tactics. This investigation is ongoing.

On Thursday, the attorney general said his agency is committed to fighting for justice on Taylor’s behalf, more than two years after his death.

“We share, but cannot fully imagine, the grief felt by Breonna Taylor’s loved ones,” Garland said.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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