Louisville police have declared a state of emergency as the Kentucky city braces for a grand jury decision on the fate of three cops involved in the police shooting death of Breonna Taylor.
Acting Police Chief Robert Schroeder said Monday that days off and vacation requests for all Louisville Metro Police Department personnel are canceled until further notice pending state Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s announcement on whether the cops involved in the March shooting will face criminal charges.
“To ensure we have the appropriate level of staffing to provide for public safety services and our policing functions, effective immediately the LMPD will operate under the emergency staffing and reporting guidelines as outlined in the Standard Operating Procedures, Emergency Response Plan, and collective bargaining agreements until further notice,” Schroeder said in a memo.
Police Sgt. Lamont Washington added that “the public may also see barriers being staged around downtown, which is another part of our preparations,” WDRB-TV reported.
The announcement comes one day after city officials boarded up the windows of the federal courthouse and a judge signed an order to shut down the historic Gene Snyder US Courthouse and Custom House for the week in case of any unrest from the grand jury’s decision.
Three Louisville police officers — Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, and officers Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankinson — face potential criminal charges in Taylor’s March 13 death during a botched raid. Hankinson has since been fired.
Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT, was sleeping when the officers barged into the apartment around 1 a.m. and opened fire.
Prosecutors later dropped charges against Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, who fired back at police with a licensed handgun. Walker said he did not know the men busting into the apartment were cops.
Earlier this month the city agreed to a $12 million settlement in a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by Taylor’s family.
Taylor’s death — and the May 25 police custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis — have helped spark worldwide protests against police brutality and racial injustice, with many demonstrations devolving into riots and violent clashes with police.
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