Amnesty International on Wednesday condemned a Kentucky grand jury’s decision not to file any charges against any officers involved in Breonna Taylor’s death.
The jury did not bring any charges against the three police officers involved in the killing, and only announced three lesser counts of wanton endangerment against Louisville police officer Brett Hankison.
Two other officers who fired their guns in the shooting were not charged. In addition, more serious charges were not brought against Hankison.
[read_more id="2" more="Read full article" less="Read less"]
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said the other two officers had been justified in firing their weapons to protect themselves, while calling the death a “tragedy” and “gut-wrenching.”
Kristina Roth, the Senior Program Officer for Criminal Justice Programs at Amnesty International USA, described Breonna Taylor’s death as a tragedy, adding that the decision not to charge the officers shows Kentucky’s police use of lethal force statue puts accountability out of reach for unlawful killings by police.
Amnesty International USA had earlier sent a letter to Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron regarding the LMPD killing of Breonna Taylor.
“She was asleep in her bed when the police busted down her door and recklessly opened fire, taking her life. Black people in America have the same right to be safe as all people, though this is hard to conceive when we think of the abhorrent killings of Breonna, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Dijon Kizzee and too many more,” said Kristina Roth.
“Breonna Taylor’s case reminds us of how Kentucky’s police use of lethal force statute puts accountability out of reach for unlawful killings by police — and how police, who are supposed to protect life, so frequently only see one side of that principle. This case must serve as a wake-up call to our elected officials that they must meet this moment with a bold agenda for police reform, one that brings about meaningful accountability, reimagines public safety and provides justice for all.
“We call on police to facilitate the right to peaceful protest in the wake of this news. Everyone has the right to take to the streets and make their voices heard, and police must meet their obligation under international law to enable that right.”