Breonna Taylor’s Family Seeks Justice In Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Louisville Metro Police Department

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Close-up of a Louisville city police vehicle

Source: Douglas Sacha / Getty

The family of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old decorated EMT worker who was killed in a botched narcotics raid on March 13, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Louisville Metro Police Department.

Taylor was shot eight times by members of the LMPD after they broke into her apartment with a battering ram around 1 a.m. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired shots which injured one officer who has since recovered. Walker, a registered gun owner, was arrested and charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault.

In the suit obtained by The Washington Post and filed on April 27, Taylor’s family claims officers stormed the wrong apartment, when the man they were searching for was detained prior to their raid. The suit also states that police fired 20 rounds of ammunition into Taylor’s home.

“The actions of the Defendant officers were made in bad faith, were performed with a corrupt motive, were outside the scope of the Defendants’ authority, were executed willfully and with the intent to harm, and were in violation of Breonna’s constitutional and statutory rights,” the lawsuit states.

“Not one person has talked to me. Not one person has explained anything to me,” Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mother, said in an interview with The Post. “I want justice for her. I want them to say her name. There’s no reason Breonna should be dead at all.”

Palmer said she is still stricken from when Walker told her that Taylor was shot on that fateful night.

The family want to bring forth charges of battery, wrongful death, excessive force, and negligence and gross negligence. They are asking for both compensatory and punitive damages.

Taylor’s family lawyer, civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, held a press conference on Wednesday morning where he released the following statement in a press release:

“We stand with the family of this young woman in demanding answers from the Louisville Police Department. Despite the tragic circumstances surrounding her death, the Department has not provided any answers regarding the facts and circumstances of how this tragedy occurred, nor have they taken responsibility for her senseless killing.”

Crump, who also represents the father of Ahmaud Arbery, has called for the LMPD to release the 911 tape and search warrant, for transparency.

 

Several petitions circulating on the internet demand justice for Taylor and her family. A Color of Change Petition, calls for the LMPD to fire the the officers involved in her murder. Taylor’s sister, Ju’Niyah Palmer has also used her social media platform to spread awareness and to seek justice. She lived with her sister, but thankfully was not at home during the incident.

“I’m just getting awareness for my sister, for people to know who she is, what her name is,” said Palmer, 20. “It is literally just as equal. There’s no difference.”

“They’re killing our sisters just like they’re killing our brothers, but for whatever reason, we have not given our sisters the same attention that we have given to Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Stephon Clark, Terence Crutcher, Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, Eric Garner, Laquan McDonald,” Crump said. “Breonna’s name should be known by everybody in America who said those other names, because she was in her own home, doing absolutely nothing wrong.”

“If you ran for Ahmaud, you need to stand for Bre,” Crump said.

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