Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend sues Louisville police
Kenneth Walker, Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend, sued the Louisville Police Department, claiming that it wasn’t his bullet that struck a police officer the night law enforcement entered Taylor’s apartment with a controversial no-knock warrant, then shot and killed her.
The suit was filed with the Jefferson County District Court on Tuesday, according to The Courier Journal.
Steve Romines, Walker’s attorney, told the paper that evidence backs up Walker’s claim.
“We know police are firing wildly from various angles,” Romines said. “The timeline and evidence at the scene is more indicative of [police] actually shooting [Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly] than it is Kenny Walker.”
Three plainclothes Louisville police officers entered Taylor’s apartment in the early hours of March 13 to execute a no-knock search warrant, while Taylor and Walker were asleep inside.
Walker, who has said he thought the officers were intruders, fired at them. The officers — Mattingly, Brett Hankison, and Myles Cosgrove — returned the fire, hitting Taylor numerous times and killing her.
During the exchange of fire, Mattingly was hit in the femoral artery in his thigh and it is thought that it was Walker who hit him.
Evidence, however, shows that the trio likely fired 40 to 45 bullets into Taylor’s apartment between two separate waves of gunfire.
“The radio transmission and the 911 calls reflect that a minute and eight seconds transpires with no shots before they start shooting into the apartment again,” Romines told the paper.
Romines added that the recovered round that Walker fired did not suggest that it had touched blood.
Walker was quickly arrested and charged with the attempted murder of a police officer, but Jefferson County Commonwealth Attorney Tom Wine tossed the case against him May 22.
Nonetheless, the newly filed suit argues that Walker was illegally arrested, detained, charged and prosecuted before Wine dismissed the case.
Walker is seeking monetary damages from Louisville and its police force for battery, false arrest and imprisonment, assault, malicious prosecution, abuse of process and negligence stemming from the night of the shooting, the paper says.
Additionally, Romines is asking for Walker to be granted immediate immunity from further prosecution related to the case, citing Kentucky’s “stand your ground.” The law prohibits police or state officials from prosecuting any Kentuckian who acts out of self-defense.
Walker had no way of knowing “nor should he have known” that the men who barged into his apartment on March 13 were Louisville police. The lawsuit states that Walker asked “who is it,” after he and Taylor heard a “loud boom” at their door.
When no one answered, Walker reportedly grabbed his gun, which was legally registered. Police officials have said that — despite the no-knock warrant — the officers knocked multiple times and identified themselves, but multiple neighbors have said that they never heard the officers announce themselves.
“Kenny continues to reel from the death of the love of his life, but he is also the victim and survivor of police misconduct — misconduct that threatens his freedom to this day,” the complaint reads.
Updated at 2:40 p.m.
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