Prosecutors to permanently dismiss charges against Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend
The charges against Kenneth Walker included assault and attempted murder of a police officer after the deadly raid
The lengthy legal battle Kenneth Walker faced after Louisville, KY police officers stormed his girlfriend Breonna Taylor‘s apartment, shooting her dead, may finally be over.
According to CBS News, prosecutors have moved to permanently dismiss charges faced by Walker after he allegedly fired back during the botched raid. Once dismissed, he will no longer be able to be charged for the incident.
Initially, he was accused of assault and attempted murder of a police officer. Walker claimed he believed the police were not law enforcement, but people breaking in to rob the apartment, and that he acted in self-defense.
Louisville Metro Police Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly, who was wounded in the fatal interaction, sued Walker for emotional distress and assault and battery.
Although the charges were initially dropped against Walker last May, it was done without prejudice, meaning they could be brought up again at any time. Jefferson Commonwealth’s Attorney Tom Wine claimed at the time, more investigating needed to occur before the case was once again brought to a Grand Jury, according to the report. In the motion filed this week, however, prosecutors concluded that there is no additional evidence.
According to CBS News, the motion stated, “into this matter have concluded and no new information relevant to the charges against (Walker) in this matter has been brought to the Commonwealth’s attention.”
Steve Romines, legal representation for Walker, shared his client was thankful for the news.
After the worst year of [Walker’s] life, prosecutors have finally acknowledged that he did nothing wrong and acted in self-defense,” Romines told the publication. “He looks forward to continuing the fight to hold the real wrongdoers accountable for the harm that they’ve caused. Both he, individually, and our community, as a whole, cannot begin the process of healing until that happens.”
During an interview with journalist Gayle King, theGrio reported Walker opened up about the emotional toll of the deadly shooting and what happened from his point-of-view. He believed that if he had also died in the shooting, there would not even be a story.
“To the world, she’s just a hashtag, a picture, and all of that,” Walker explained. “But to me, it was much more. More than a girlfriend too. I think that’s what I want the world to know the most. That was my best friend. The most important person pretty much to me on Earth. And they took her.”
Protests in Breonna Taylor’s name joined the powerful social justice movement, which grew across the country throughout the spring and summer of 2020. In various cities, people took to the streets to stand out against police brutality, police violence, and systemic racism as the deaths of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery made national news.
theGrio reported Major Kim Burbrink was demoted and reassigned. She was in charge of the unit where the police officers who carried out the raid reported.
“Although these events unfolded prior to my arrival here, I find this to be the appropriate course of action based on the recommendations of my senior staff,” wrote Louisville police chief Erika Shields according to the report. “Internal investigations and resulting discipline are paramount to the accountability of this police department and those across the nation.”
Taylor’s family won a $12M wrongful death suit against the city of Louisville. Though the city admitted no wrongdoing in the settlement, it included police reforms the Taylor family asked for, including abolishing ‘no-knock’ raids. Still, the family wants justice for Taylor’s death.
“We’re still angry, we’re still emotional,” said Taylor’s aunt Bianca Austin to the Courier-Journal, “except now, it’s been a year later. We realize a big part of our lives is just gone. It’s just been hard.”
According to the source, family members shared their continued feelings nearly a year later, and their long-term quest for their loved one’s unjust death. The family wants Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron impeached, the Bluegrass State to pass Breonna’s law, and the Louisville Metro Police Department to apologize.
“LMPD has still not reached out and offered any type of apology for what happened that night,” Austin said to the news outlet. “It’s just like that slap in the face.”
This article contains additional reporting by theGrio’s Tonya Pendleton.
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