Internal probe shows police collected negative info about Breonna Taylor's boyfriend after shooting

Internal probe shows police collected negative info about Breonna Taylor's boyfriend after shooting
© NBC News

Documents from the Louisville Metro Police Department’s internal investigation into the death of Breonna Taylor reportedly show that even after the case was turned over to the office of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R), the department worked to gather negative information about Taylor’s boyfriend. 

According to NBC News, documents released to the public Wednesday show that an officer involved in the botched March drug raid on Taylor’s apartment continued to search for information that could justify it after her death. 

Taylor, a Black, 26-year-old emergency room technician, was killed in March after Louisville police shot her while executing a warrant for her ex-boyfriend, who did not live at Taylor’s address. 

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Police said that Taylor's boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired a shot at the front door, striking one officer. Walker and police have given different accounts as to if officers properly announced themselves.

NBC News reported Friday that a July 2 investigative memo from the police department revealed that in May, two months after the shooting, an investigator from the Public Integrity Unit started examining pictures and text messages from Walker’s phone. 

The memo noted that two pictures from Walker's phone appear to show Walker and Taylor with an AR-15, with text messages showing that Walker was selling marijuana and pills from October 2019 through March. 

According to NBC News, investigators also implied a belief that Walker was involved in a robbery, although the message used as evidence for this is garbled. 

In the memo, investigators reportedly concluded that his illegal activity "may have contributed to Walker's actions on March 13, 2020."

However, Walker’s attorney, Steven Romines, told NBC News that this information had little relevance to the Taylor case and that the investigation into Walker’s past is “a cover-up.” 

“It reflects the fact that over two months into the investigation of Breonna Taylor's death, LMPD [was] more interested in including unsupported allegations to smear Kenny Walker than it [was] in actually finding the truth,” Romines said. “All they are trying to do is smear him after the fact to justify their actions.” 

The documents come as national outrage persists following a grand jury decision last month not to charge any of the officers involved in Taylor’s death, although it announced three counts of wanton endangerment against former Louisville police officer Brett Hankison. 

Cameron has argued that officers were “justified” in returning fire after Walker allegedly fired on them.