Former Louisville Metro Police detective Brett Hankison was found not guilty in charges related to the raid that ended in Breonna Taylor’s death.
“The wanton endangerment trial of Hankison, 45, was sent to a jury of eight men and four women just before noon Thursday after five days of witness testimony and a morning of closing arguments,” the Louisville Courier Journal reported. “It didn’t take them long to make a decision that brought protesters back out onto downtown Louisville’s streets.”
Ben Crump — the attorney representing Taylor’s family — condemned the verdict. “The lack of accountability showcased in every aspect of Breonna’s killing speaks to how much more work there is to be done before we can say our justice system is fair and our system of policing is protective of people of color,” said Crump, who formerly represented the the families of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, and George Floyd.
In the summer of 2020, the Breonna Taylor case gained national attention as protesters and rioters took to the streets. Alongside the death of George Floyd, the death of Taylor provoked calls for police reform ahead of the general election, from which President Joe Biden emerged victorious.
However, the mainstream media narrative of the incident was often embroiled in political narratives and far from forthright.
In a new book due for release on March 15 from The Daily Wire, Sergeant John Mattingly — the lead officer on the scene — details the true account of the tragic night. In 12 Seconds in the Dark: A Police Officer’s Firsthand Account of the Breonna Taylor Raid, Mattingly “takes readers inside the Louisville Metro Police Department’s response to suspected criminal activity that night, debunking lie after lie about what happened.”
Contrary to the media’s narrative, Mattingly writes that his team followed standard forced-entry protocol and explicitly identified themselves — even allotting the suspect more time than usual to respond.
Indeed, several family members of African Americans who died during encounters with police — including the mother of Breonna Taylor — have taken aim at the national Black Lives Matter organization and its former co-founder, Patrisse Cullors, for profiting off the deaths of their loved ones. Last year, Cullors resigned from the controversial activist organization following revelations of her multimillion-dollar home buying spree.
“We never hired them to be the representatives in the fight for justice for our dead loved ones murdered by the police,” said mothers Samaria Rice and Lisa Simpson in a statement. “The ‘activists’ have events in our cities and have not given us anything substantial for using our loved ones’ images and names on their flyers. We don’t want or need y’all parading in the streets accumulating donations, platforms, movie deals, etc. off the death of our loved ones, while the families and communities are left clueless and broken.”
Tamika Palmer, Breonna Taylor’s mother, echoed the pair in a social media post of her own: “I have never personally dealt with BLM Louisville and personally have found them to be fraud.”