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Officer fired in shooting death of Breonna Taylor

3 years 10 months 4 weeks ago Tuesday, June 23 2020 Jun 23, 2020 June 23, 2020 10:07 PM June 23, 2020 in News
Source: CNN

LOUISVILLE- One police officer involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor has been fired more than three months after Taylor's death, according to the police department.

Det. Brett Hankison was given a letter signed by the police chief that his employment with the department "is terminated," effective immediately.

The Louisville Metro Police Department posted the full letter to Twitter.

Taylor, a 26-year-old Black EMT, was killed when police broke down the door to her apartment and shot her eight times in an attempted drug sting.

Hankison and two other officers were later put on administrative leave. "I find your conduct a shock to the conscience," Police Chief Robert Schroeder wrote in the letter. "I am alarmed and stunned you used deadly force in this fashion."

Protests against police brutality following the death of George Floyd have brought attention to Taylor's recent death as well.

Mayor Greg Fischer stated he had initiated termination proceedings against Hankison last week as he violated standard operating procedure. His "actions displayed an extreme indifference to the value of human life" when he "wantonly and blindly fired ten (10) rounds" into Taylor's apartment, Schroeder wrote in the letter.

Some of those bullets fired went into the apartment next door, "endangering the three lives in that apartment," Schroeder wrote.

Most of the letter released on Tuesday echoed what he had written in the letter released on Friday.

"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," he wrote. "I cannot tolerate this type of conduct by any member of the Louisville Metro Police Department. Your conduct demands your termination."

An attorney for Taylor's family, Lonita Baker, said that the family was "excited to get this news and are encouraged by it" on Friday.

"This is just one step though," Baker added. "We're waiting for the other officers to be held accountable and for additional charges to be filed but this is a step in the right direction."

Hankison was disciplined in January of 2019 for reckless conduct that injured an innocent person, according to both letters.

The officers were conducting a search in a narcotics investigation when they entered Taylor's apartment around 1 a.m. on March 13, police say.

According to a police affidavit for a search warrant for the raid, obtained by CNN, authorities suspected a man involved in a drug ring was receiving packages of drugs at her home. A no-knock warrant was issued because of this.

Taylor's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit two months after her killing. The lawsuit claimed charges of battery, wrongful death, excessive force, negligence, and gross negligence.

the FBI's Louisville office announced it was opening an investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death on May 21.

Later that month, the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department said it would require all sworn officers to wear body cameras.

The department also stated there would be changes made to the search warrant procedures in response to Taylor's death.

Fischer said these changes are just the first steps the city will take toward improving police accountability.

LMPD Chief Steve Conrad was fired on June 1 as the officers on the scene of the shooting death of David McAtee, a Black man during a Louisville protest, did not have their body cameras turned on.

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