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Police officer involved in fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor to be fired, Louisville mayor says

The Louisville Metro Police Department found the officer 'wantonly and blindly' fired 10 rounds into the apartment

JASON CONNOLLY/AFP via Getty Images

One of the police officers involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor will be fired, according to Louisville, Kentucky, Mayor Greg Fischer (D).

"Today, I'm announcing that @LMPD Chief Schroeder is initiating termination procedures against Officer Brett Hankison," Fischer wrote Friday afternoon on Twitter.

The mayor's tweet included a link to a Louisville government website that had more details on the announcement.

"Unfortunately, due to a provision in state law that I very much would 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," the mayor said.

The statute Fischer was referencing is KRS Chapter 67c point 326 (1) (f) which states:

When a police officer has been charged with a violation of departmental rules or regulations, no public statements shall be made concerning the alleged violation by any person or persons of the consolidated local government or the police officer so charged, until final disposition of the charges.

Hankison is one of three Louisville police officers who were involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor on March 13. Three plainclothes police officers forcefully entered Taylor's apartment while executing a no-knock warrant. The officers were conducting a narcotics investigation at the time, but no drugs were found inside Taylor's apartment.

Taylor, 26, and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, were asleep at the time. Walker believed the plainclothes police were home invaders, so he shot at the officers. The cops returned fire, and Taylor was fatally shot eight times.

Hankison allegedly "wantonly and blindly" fired 10 rounds into Taylor's apartment "without supporting facts" that his "deadly force was directed at a person against whom presented an immediate threat of danger or serious injury" of himself or others, according to Hankison's termination letter released Friday by the Louisville Metro Police Department.

The letter added that three bullets that Hankison fired "traveled into the apartment next to Ms. Taylor's endangering the three lives in that apartment."

The LMPD Chief Rob Schroeder said Hankison was not trained to use deadly force in this fashion, and his conduct is a "shock to the conscience."

The letter notes that Hankison had previously been "disciplined for reckless conduct" that injured an innocent person in 2019.

"Your conduct demands your termination," Schroeder wrote. "I have the utmost confidence in my decision to terminate your employment for the best interest of the Louisville Metro Police Department and our community."

The two other officers involved in the Breonna Taylor case, Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, have been placed on administrative reassignment.

Previously, city officials noted that action against the three police officers could not take place until the investigations were complete. There was no bodycam video of the deadly incident.

WDRB-TV reported that the LMPD is also investigating allegations that Hankison made inappropriate sexual advances toward at least four women. The mayor demanded that Hankison be removed from the Louisville Police Merit Board after the allegations surfaced.

Sam Aguiar, an attorney for Taylor's family, said, "It's about time and this is the poster child of the dirtiest of dirty cops and the most dangerous of dangerous cops. I hope to God he's never back to working our streets again."

One last thing…
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