Breonna Taylor's family pushes for charges against officers after 'positive' meetings with mayor and attorney general

'We need to take our city back so there won't be any more names. We don't need another Breonna Taylor, David McAtee or Tyler Gerth'

Chris Riotta
New York
Thursday 13 August 2020 17:19 BST
Louisville police update on shooting at Breonna Taylor protest

The family of Breonna Taylor said they remained hopeful that police officers involved in the 26-year-old black woman’s death would face criminal charges during a Thursday press conference marking the 150-day anniversary of her death.

Bianca Austin, Ms Taylor’s aunt, called on the residents of Louisville, Kentucky to continue demanding justice and holding major demonstrations to help put further pressure on local officials amid an investigation into the police-involved killing.

“We need to take our city back so there won't be any more names,” she told reporters outside of the Louisville Metro Hall. “We don't need another Breonna Taylor, David McAtee or Tyler Gerth.”

Civil rights activist and attorney Ben Crump, who represents the Taylor family, also said they expected the officers involved in the shooting to face charges “sooner rather than later” following a meeting with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, and a separate meeting with the Mayor Greg Fischer.

He described the meeting with Mr Fischer as “positive” and “productive” in a statement that said the family sat down with the mayor to discuss “how we try to work together to heal this city beyond just getting justice in the criminal matter for Breonna Taylor."

The attorney general’s office released a statement ahead of the family’s press conference saying the meeting was scheduled so Mr Cameron could “personally express his condolences” to Ms Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, and others.

The statement did not provide any other details of the meeting, which took place at a state office in Louisville, but added that the investigation into the shooting is ongoing.

In a written statement, Ms Palmer described the attorney general as seeming “sincere and genuine” throughout the meeting, which she noted he called for.

"We all deserve to know the whole truth behind what happened to my daughter," she added. "The attorney general committed to getting us the truth. We're going to hold him up to that commitment."

As for the findings of the investigation, Ms Palmer said Mr Cameron "didn't say which direction he's pointing to, and I could be wrong, but after meeting him today I'm more confident that the truth will come out and that justice will be served."

Ms Taylor, a 26-year-old emergency medical worker, was slain by Louisville police serving a "no knock" narcotics search warrant at her apartment on 13 March They found no drugs in her home. An officer was shot during the raid by her boyfriend, who has said he thought he was defending against a home invasion.

The state's first African American attorney general, Mr Cameron took over the case after the local prosecutor recused himself. He has seen increasing pressure from protesters in recent weeks.

Dozens of activists who went to his Louisville home were arrested after they wouldn't leave his yard, and in late July, an armed militia marched into downtown and demanded that Mr Cameron make his decision within a month.

Ms Taylor's family and high profile celebrities - from LeBron James to Oprah Winfrey - have called for three police officers who were at her home to be charged with her killing.

Mr Cameron has meanwhile asked everyone to be patient during the investigation. Earlier this month, he said he was waiting on ballistics tests from the FBI.

Additional reporting by AP

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