July 14, 2024

Officer Brett Hankison fired for misconduct during Breonna Taylor shooting

Brett Hankison, Breonna Taylor theGrio.com
Brett Hankison (Instagram), Breonna Taylor (Facebook)

The mayor of Louisville, Kentucky announced Friday that Officer Brett Hankison is being fired from the Louisville police department over his involvement in Breonna Taylor’s shooting death.

Mayor Greg Fischer said that Chief Rob Schroeder began the process to fire Hankison, one of three officers that shot at Taylor in March after a ‘no-knock’ warrant was executed at her apartment. Hankison, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Officer Myles Cosgrove were placed on paid administrative leave as Louisville Police Department investigates Taylor’s death.

READ MORE: Kentucky AG won’t commit to timeline for charges in Breonna Taylor case

Breonna Taylor is pictured in an undated photo. (Credit: Instagram/@keyanna.guifarro)

“Unfortunately, due to a provision in state law that I would very much like to see changed, both the chief and I are precluded from talking about what brought us to this moment or even the timing of this decision,” Fischer said.

Hankinson’s termination letter stated that his firing was a direct result of the actions he took on the night Taylor died. He violated obedience to rules and regulations and the use of deadly force by “blindly” shooting at her.

“I find your conduct a shock to the conscience,” Schroeder wrote in a Friday letter to Hankison laying out the charges against him. “I am alarmed and stunned you used deadly force in this fashion.”

“The result of your action seriously impedes the Department’s goal of providing the citizens of our city with the most professional law enforcement agency possible. I cannot tolerate this type of conduct by any member of the Louisville Metro Police Department,” he added. “Your conduct demands your termination.”

There is no word yet as to what, if any, action will be taken against Mattingly and Cosgrove for their part in Taylor’s death.

Taylor died on March 13 during a botched drug raid that she was not the target of. Taylor, an EMT who worked at two local hospitals, was shot as police were serving the ‘no-knock warrant’ as part of a narcotics investigation.

READ MORE: Beyoncé demands ‘swift and decisive action’ for Breonna Taylor

Kenneth Walker, Taylor’s boyfriend, called 911 to report someone was breaking into their apartment. As police fired on the couple, Walker returned fire and Taylor was shot eight times. She died at the scene.

Walker was initially arrested and charged with attempted murder but those charges were later dropped. The individual who was the actual target of the warrant was already in custody at the time of the raid.

At a press conference Thursday, Kentucky attorney general Daniel Cameron refused to give a timeline as to when the investigation into Taylor’s death will be completed but asked her supporters for patience. There have been no arrests or charges made in the months since she died.

“We are not going to strike foul blows in this case. We are going to pursue the truth based on the law, whether that lands to convictions or exonerations,” Cameron said.

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