Artist repairs vandalized Breonna Taylor mural and adds a new face as well

By |2021-07-26T01:21:15-04:00July 25th, 2021|Breonna Taylor, David McAtee|

PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS UNIT AND NEW TONIGHT A MURAL HONORING BREONNA TAYLOR AND DAVID MCATEE WAS REPAIRED AFTER IT WAS VANDALIZED EARLIER THIS SUMMER THE SAY THEIR NAMES MURAL AT THE INTERSECTION OF 11TH, AND MAIN SWA COVERED IN BLUE PAINT ARTIST. WHITNEY. HOLBURN HAS NOT ONLY FIXED THE MURAL BUT HAS ADDED ANOTHER FACE. WELL KNOWN LOCAL PROTESTER TRAVIS NODDY WAS ADDED TO THE MURAL. NAJDIAS W KILLED IN A SHOOTING IN NOVEMBER OF LAST YEAR AND A FACEBOOK. HOLBORN SAID THAT EVERY TIME SOMEONE VANDALIZES THE MURAL SHE WILL FIX IT AND ADD ANOTHER PHAS

“Breonna Taylor situation wasn't like George Floyd or Ahmaud Arbery”: When Charles Barkley and …

By |2021-07-24T13:23:47-04:00July 24th, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal were roundly criticized for their statements regarding Breonna Taylor. Did they truly deserve the BLM backlash? The cops who shot Breonna Taylor were summarily exonerated from criminal charges in September [...]

Judge blocks effort by city to withhold cellphone records of LMPD officers in Breonna Taylor raid

By |2021-07-23T06:26:51-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

A Jefferson Circuit Court judge has paved the way for the potential release of personal cellphone data of some of the Louisville Metro police officers involved in the deadly raid at Breonna Taylor's apartment in 2020, but the city is fighting back against the ruling.While it doesn't mean the release is imminent, the move comes after Judge Brian Edwards rejected an effort by the city to block the release of the cellphone records and data.Attorney Steve Romines, who has been representing Taylor's former boyfriend Kenneth Walker, filed a motion calling for the release of the cellphone data of some of the officers involved in the March 13, 2020, raid in west Louisville. The legal team, in a motion initially filed in June, sought the records because it is "reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence."Walker with was Taylor when police arrived at her apartment to serve a warrant connected to a larger drug investigation. Walker was charged with assault and attempted murder of a police officer after he opened fire during the raid, wounding Louisville Metro police Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly. Those charges were later permanently dismissed in March.Walker's legal team has sought to continue its lawsuit against the LMPD for his arrest, arguing Taylor's ex-boyfriend was immune under the state's stand your ground law.The cellphone records are the latest facet in the overall Taylor investigation. The LMPD and Metro Government have sought to block the release, arguing that it would be a "true invasion of privacy," according to court records.Walker's team is seeking the records of Myles Cosgrove, Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, Joshua Jaynes and Wes Barton.Initially, the LMPD notified Walker's attorneys that they did not have access to the cellphone records because they were with Attorney General Daniel Cameron's office (which led the state's criminal probe into the shooting), but the AG's office notified Walker's team that they had turned over those records back to the LMPD.Last week, Judge Edwards rejected a motion by the city to quash subpoenas seeking the release of the cellphone records and data. He ordered Metro Government to "make all reasonable efforts to procure and produce the requested items."Then on Wednesday, the city filed another motion asking the judge to reconsider his order because they feel that Walker's attorneys haven't proven there is relevant information in the cellphone data. They also called the effort a "fishing expedition."The city also indicated that it would appeal to a higher court if Edwards doesn't reverse course on his ruling.Edwards hasn't responded to the city's latest motion.Walker's lawsuit includes Attorney General Daniel Cameron, Louisville Metro government and Mayor Greg Fischer, as well as 13 Louisville Metro police officers, former Chief Steve Conrad and interim Chief Rob Schroeder.The lawsuit alleges LMPD officers "threatened Kenny's life, illegally detained Kenny, interrogated him under false pretenses, ignored his account as corroborated by neighbors, and arrested and jailed Kenny." His attorneys claim he acted in self-defense and that his actions are protected by Kentucky's "stand your ground law."The charges against Walker were dropped the following May after Taylor's shooting, but without prejudice, meaning they could be refiled if new information came to light.In his decision to permanently drop all charges in March, Commonwealth's Attorney Tom Wine said he wanted to dismiss the charges with prejudice because state and local investigations "into this matter have concluded and no new information relevant to the charges against (Walker) in this matter has been brought to the Commonwealth's attention."Taylor was shot multiple times and died in the hallway. There was no body camera footage of the incident.Walker spent a couple weeks in jail before being released to home incarceration.The state investigation into Taylor's shooting ended with one officer being indicted, Brett Hankison, and not for her death. He was indicted by a grand jury on wanton endangerment charges for shots fired into a neighboring residence that was occupied at the time.Hankison and two other officers, Myles Cosgrove, who also fired shots that night, and Joshua Jaynes, who sought the warrant that led them to Taylor's home, have since been fired from the department. LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A Jefferson Circuit Court judge has paved the way for the potential release of personal cellphone data of some of the Louisville Metro police officers involved in the deadly raid at Breonna Taylor's apartment in 2020, but the city is fighting back against the ruling.While it doesn't mean the release is imminent, the move comes after Judge Brian Edwards rejected an effort by the city to block the release of the cellphone records and data.

Family of Louisville woman who died in police custody hire Breonna Taylor's family's legal team

By |2021-07-23T06:26:52-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Family members of a Louisville woman who died in police custody in Jackson County, Indiana have hired the legal team that represented Breonna Taylor’s family. Among the attorneys taking on Ta’neasha Chappell’s family’s case is civil rights lawyer Ben Crump and Louisville-area lawyers Sam Aguiar and Lonita Baker.Chappell was 23 years old when she died on July 16 at Schneck Medical Center in Seymour.Her family said she told them in a phone call that she believed she was going to be killed while in custody at Jackson County Jail in Brownstown, Indiana, where she was being held on charges of theft and leading police on a chase down I-65. In other conversations, her family said Chappell sounded healthy and in fine spirits, which is why they were shocked and devastated by her sudden death.Corrections officers were checking Chappell’s temperature every 15 minutes since she had a high running fever and was throwing up, according to Baker. Corrections officers didn’t take the 23-year-old to the hospital until she was found unresponsive.Baker said Chapell’s family didn’t know she died at Schneck Medical Center until three hours later.Jackson County Sheriff’s Office requested an autopsy from the Indiana State Police, which was done on Sunday. An ISP spokesperson said the results are not likely to be released for another few days or even weeks. Baker said her team has requested an independent medical examiner to conduct another autopsy.Chappell’s family appeared with Baker to discuss the case on Thursday.(Story continues below video)“The conditions we describe at the jail are what we call cruel and unusual punishment,” Baker said.Nearly a week since Chappell died, the family is still distraught over the unexpected loss.“If Ta’Neasha, you could hear me, I’m trying, I’m sorry,” Ronesha Murrell, Chappell’s sister, said.Murrell apologized and agonized over not being able to save her sister’s life, but said it is now her mission to get justice.According to Chappell’s family, said said at one point in jail, she was physically attacked and faced racism.“I want answers,” Murrell said. “She told me if something happened to her to get to the bottom of it. Our last conversation, she just put on a big front. She didn’t want us to know what all she was going through, but at the beginning, she called so much and said she needed to get out of there.”Baker said Jackson County Sheriff’s Office investigators told the family Chappell ultimately died from something chemical-related. However, Baker said Chappell had bruises and obvious abuse to her face.“There are cameras in the jail,” she said. “We have taken steps to make sure the Jackson County Jail is preserving as it relates to surveillance, complaints, grievances, things like that.”Since taking on this case, Baker said she and her team have interviewed previous Jackson County Jail inmates, all of whom said nothing but negative things about the staff and the conditions they are kept in while locked up.Chappell’s family said they plan to file criminal charges if evidence calls for it.Copyright 2021 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

Family of Black woman who died in police custody hires Breonna Taylor's legal team

By |2021-07-22T17:26:01-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

The family of Ta’Neasha Chappell, a Louisville woman who died while in custody at an Indiana jail, are on a quest for answers and have hired a well-known legal team to help them learn more about her mysterious death. According to the Louisville Courier Journal, the 23-year-old’s relatives have recruited attorneys Sam Aguiar, Lonita Baker and Ben Crump — the lawyers representing Breonna Taylor’s case. “Our team has been given the privilege of seeking truth and justice for the family of Ta’Neasha Chappell,” Aguiar wrote in a statement on Wednesday (July 21). “More to come ASAP.” Chappell was being held in Jackson County Jail on shoplifting charges connected to an alleged theft of clothing at a Polo Ralph Lauren and a subsequent high-speed chase. After a little over a month in custody, she was taken to the Schneck Memorial Hospital where she took her last breaths. According to authorities, the 23-year-old was transferred to the hospital because she throwing up and was feverish on Thursday (July 15). She passed away the following day at 6 pm, and her family was informed nearly two hours later. Chappell’s sister, Ronesha Murrell, said that the 23-year-old complained about issues she was having with staff and other inmates. On one occasion, a noose was found in her bed, causing her to fear for her life. Two weeks before her death, however, she seemed to be in a much better space. Per Murrell, “very little details” about her death have been shared by state police, and the jail has been irresponsive. An investigation into the incident is underway. Pending the results of the 23-year-old’s autopsy, state police have chosen not to comment on the matter. “We don’t anticipate any further statements until investigators receive the autopsy and toxicology results, which typically takes several days or longer,” a state police spokesman said.

Louisville judge blocks city's effort to withhold personal cell phones of officers in Breonna Taylor raid

By |2021-07-22T17:26:03-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A judge has rejected the city’s attempt to block the release of personal cell phone data of some of the Louisville Metro Police officers who were involved in the raid of Breonna Taylor’s apartment.Attorney Steve Romines, who represents Kenneth Walker, Taylor’s former boyfriend, argued in a recent court hearing that officers have acknowledged using their personal phones for work and he believes “there is a conspiracy in this case” among police involved in planning and executing the raid.Last month, Romines and co-counsel Fred Moore asked Jefferson Circuit Court Judge Brian Edwards to order the production of phone data for officers Myles Cosgrove, Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, Joshua Jaynes and Wes Barton for the hours surrounding the March 13, 2020 raid.LMPD denied having the information, though Romines and Moore filed documents showing the Kentucky Attorney General’s office, which presented the case to a grand jury, turned the evidence back over to police after the investigation concluded.In addition, attorneys for Walker asked the judge to allow them to subpoena phone records for officers Michael Nobles and Tony James. The city has repeatedly asked the judge to quash a subpoena for the phones, calling it “an insidious invasion of privacy.”"There's nothing more private ... than the content of our cell phones," an attorney for the city told Judge Brian Edwards earlier this month.On July 14, Edwards rejected the city’s argument to quash the subppena and ordered Metro Government to “make all reasonable efforts to procure and produce the requested items.”On Wednesday, the city filed a motion asking the judge to reconsider his order, arguing Walker’s attorneys hadn’t proven there is any relevant information in the phone data and calling it a “fishing expedition.”“To give the Plaintiff a 24-hour window into the personal lives of (the officers) with no indication of relevant evidence is highly unreasonable,” Assistant Jefferson County Attorney Peter Ervin wrote.The city indicated it will appeal to a higher court if Edwards does not change his mind.Attorneys for Walker have argued that his cell phone was immediately taken by police the night of the shooting. “Privacy apparently only goes one way,” Romines said in a July 13 court hearing.When police burst into Taylor’s home on March 13, 2020, Walker has said he thought they were being robbed and fired a shot, hitting Sgt. Mattingly in the leg.Police fired back, shooting and killing Taylor during an undercover raid on her apartment on Springfield Drive as part of a series of raids elsewhere that targeted narcotics trafficking.No drugs or money were found in her home.Walker was charged with attempted murder of an officer but Jefferson Commonwealth’s Attorney Tom Wine later dismissed the charge.Attorneys for Walker filed a lawsuit in September, arguing police “threatened Kenny’s life, illegally detained Kenny, interrogated him under false pretenses” and improperly arrested and jailed him, among other allegations.Hankison was the only officer charged in the raid, indicted on three counts of wanton endangerment for firing at a neighboring apartment unit, showing “extreme indifference to human life” for three people inside, a grand jury concluded on Sept. 23. He has pleaded not guilty, and the case is pending.No officers were indicted in Taylor’s death. Taylor was killed by one of Cosgrove’s bullets, according to FBI ballistics findings released by Cameron. Det. Jaynes was fired for being untruthful in a search warrant used to raid Taylor’s home.Officer James failed to turn on his body cam police have said. Photos of Cosgrove show him wearing a mounting bracket for a body camera but the camera is not attached.Copyright 2021 WDRB Media. All rights reserved. 

Man sues LMPD, alleging he was knocked from scooter on day of Breonna Taylor decision

By |2021-07-22T07:07:46-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

A Louisville man has filed a federal lawsuit alleging he was knocked off his scooter and assaulted by police officers after delivering food to people protesting the Breonna Taylor grand jury decision in September.In a complaint filed Wednesday in the Western District of Kentucky, Aron Conaway says he was trying to leave after Louisville Metro Police told the crowd to disperse when he was knocked from his scooter. He alleges that he was zip-tied by police and had "chemical agents" sprayed in his face. The complaint names multiple defendants: Louisville Metro Government, Mayor Greg Fischer, former interim LMPD Chief Robert Schroeder, LMPD Assistant Chief Lavita Chavous, an LMPD officer identified in the filing as "J. Berg"  and "unknown supervisors/officers" from LMPD. Claims made in a lawsuit represent only one side of a case. Spokespersons for LMPD and Mayor Greg Fischer did not immediately return Courier Journal requests for comment on Wednesday. The filing says Conaway was in the Highlands to distribute food to protesters on Sept. 23, 2020 — the day a grand jury did not indict three LMPD officers for the shooting death of Breonna Taylor, indicting only on on charges related to bullets going to a neighboring apartment.Read more:Attica Scott sues Louisville police officers over arrest at Breonna Taylor protestConaway himself was not protesting, the filing claims, and tried to leave on his scooter when officers arrived and ordered the crowd to disperse."As he was immediately attempting to leave, (Conaway's) scooter was knocked over and damaged by an unknown LMPD officer who then jumped on and assaulted (Conaway)," the lawsuit claims. "As (Conaway) was being assaulted by an unknown LMPD officer, he was further assaulted by other unknown LMPD officers who joined in the altercation."The lawsuit also says officers zip-tied Conaway's wrists, sprayed "chemical agents" in his face and told him he was "under arrest and charged with a felony.""Upon informing the Defendants he was severely hurt and needing to go to an emergency room, (Conaway) was told by Defendants he was free to leave with a police citation for a felony which was a clear intentional attempt to deny him their immediate duty in regard to his health and safety," the filing states.Conaway then left the scene to get medical attention, the lawsuit says. His citation was reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor, then dismissed in April, it adds.Since the incident, Conaway has experienced "nightmares and sleeplessness due to his experiences" and fears retaliation by the defendants, the lawsuit claims. You may like:Why most protesters arrested by Louisville police will never be convicted of a crimeThe filing also alleges a "failure to train, audit, supervise and discipline" by city leaders as well as assault, battery, false arrest, intentional inflictions of emotional distress and conspiracy to violate the Constitution.In addition, it claims Conaway's Fourth and 14th Amendment rights were violated, which pertain to unreasonable search and seizure and equal protection under the law.The lawsuit requests a jury trial and seeks unspecified compensation.Reach reporter Mary Ramsey at mramsey@gannett.com, and follow her on Twitter @mcolleen1996. Support strong local journalism in our community by subscribing to The Courier Journal today.

Family of Louisville woman who died in Indiana jail hires Breonna Taylor's legal team

By |2021-07-21T14:50:46-04:00July 21st, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

A Louisville woman died last week while incarcerated in southern Indiana, and since then, few details have been released about what happened.Now, the team of lawyers who have represented the family of Breonna Taylor will now help Ta’neasha Chappell's family as well.Indiana State Police said Chappell, 23, was in custody of the Jackson County Jail. She was arrested by ISP on May 26 after being accused of shoplifting and leading police on a multi-county chase. (Scroll down for more info)She was found Friday at the jail with something wrong that prompted her to be rushed to a hospital in Seymour, where she died.An autopsy was performed Sunday, but results are not yet available.Chappell's sister told WLKY she had some problems at the jail."First and foremost, she had got into an altercation where they sliced her neck. That was the first thing she had to seek medical attention for that. Then a little bit after that, she was crying to me and she phoned me and she was like, 'You got to get me out of here. They're going to kill me in here,'" Ronesha Murrell said.Her family said days before her death, they saw her and she was in good spirits.Now, they are waiting for answers on her death and will get help from Taylor's legal team.Sam Aguiar posted on Facebook that he, Ben Crump and Lonita Baker are on the case. "Our team has been given the privilege of seeking truth and justice for the family of Ta’Neasha Chappell...more to come ASAP," he said.Crump, a high-profile civil rights attorney, led the legal teams for both Taylor and George Floyd. For Taylor's family, the team was able to secure a $12 million settlement with the city. The team released this statement Wednesday afternoon:"Her family wasn't called for more than three hours after she died. And now the sheriff's department refused to tell the full truth about what happened. They won't explain why Ta'Neasha's face was swollen and beaten -- it makes me think of Sandra Bland. They won't explain why they ignored Ta'Neasha's medical needs during the 24 hours leading up to her death, despite her constant vomiting and rising fever. They won't explain what video footage shows, even though the facility has new, state of the art cameras. What happened to Ta'Neasha Chappell?" As for the charges that landed her in jail, Chappell was accused in multiple thefts from an outlet mall in Edinburgh.On May 26, she allegedly led police on a 30-minute, 75-mile chase before crashing in Clark County.ISP said they used stop sticks at several points on the interstate to try and slow Chappell down.Numerous suspected stolen items, valued at over $3,000, were located in the vehicle, police said.Chappell was then booked on multiple felony and misdemeanor charges related to resisting law enforcement. LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A Louisville woman died last week while incarcerated in southern Indiana, and since then, few details have been released about what happened.Now, the team of lawyers who have represented the family of Breonna Taylor will now help Ta’neasha Chappell's family as well.

Ta'Neasha Chappell's family hires Breonna Taylor's legal team after her Indiana jail death

By |2021-07-21T11:39:02-04:00July 21st, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

The family of Ta'Neasha Chappell, a Louisville woman who died after more than a month in an Indiana jail, has hired a prominent legal team to help it get answers about what happened to her."Our team has been given the privilege of seeking truth and justice for the family of Ta'Neasha Chappell," Louisville attorney Sam Aguiar wrote on Facebook on Wednesday. "More to come ASAP."Aguiar said in his post that fellow Louisville lawyer Lonita Baker and high-profile Florida-based attorney Ben Crump have been hired as well. Together, they secured a $12 million settlement last year from the city of Louisville for the fatal police shooting of Breonna Taylor in March 2020.Chappell was being held in the Jackson County Jail in Brownstown, Indiana, on charges stemming from an alleged theft and high-speed chase when she was taken to Schneck Memorial Hospital in nearby Seymour on Friday. Brownstown is about 50 miles north of downtown Louisville.The 23-year-old, who had a 10-year-old daughter, died later the same day at the hospital, according to Indiana State Police, which is investigating the death. Ronesha Murrell, Chappell's sister, told The Courier Journal on Tuesday night that the family has spoken to state police officials but has been given "very little details.""We're just taking it day by day," she said of how the family is coping. "We want justice."Chappell had told her family she was having problems with other people being held in the jail and staff and that she feared for her life, Murrell said, including after an incident when Chappell said a noose was left in her bed. The family previously reached out to the jail but did not receive a response, Murrell said.A woman who answered the phone at the Jackson County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday morning said all questions were being directed to the state police. Read more:Seen as a long overdue change, Louisville plans to eliminate fees on phone calls from jailMurrell said her family was informed after 8:30 p.m. Friday of Chappell's death and were told that she died about 6 p.m. She said the family was told by law enforcement that Chappell informed jail staff she was feeling ill on Thursday and was vomiting and feverish.They want to know why Chappell wasn't taken to a hospital earlier, she said."How do you not seek medical attention right then and there?" she asked.'Justice and answers'A statement Sunday from state police said an ambulance was called for Chappell shortly before her death Friday and that the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department reached out to state police Saturday to request an investigation. ISP's death investigation is ongoing, they said Sunday, and an autopsy has been performed. State police on Tuesday declined to offer additional information."We don't anticipate any further statements until investigators receive the autopsy and toxicology results, which typically takes several days or longer," a state police spokesman said.Disciplined cops vs. the chief:Who the Louisville police merit board usually sides withChappell did not have any preexisting conditions, according to her sister.And the last time Murrell spoke with her younger sister, about two weeks before her death, she said she was doing better in her situation."She was laughing, and she asked about my son," Murrell said. "She told us that she loved us and would call back."Chappell had a "bubbly" personality and loved to be around people, especially her young daughter, according to her sister."She was the life of the party," Murrell said. "She may do something that gets on your nerves or you may get into a disagreement, but then she's back to loving you like it never happened."Moving forward, she said the family will work to "take action" to get "justice and answers.""We're going to keep going and keep talking and keep pressing the issue."Why was Ta'Neasha Chappell in jail?Indiana court records show Chappell had been held in jail since May 26 on $4,000 cash bond for multiple felony and misdemeanor charges in Jackson County, including resisting law enforcement, theft, leaving the scene of an accident and reckless driving causing bodily injury.The most serious charge, escaping from law enforcement with bodily injury, is a level 4 felony and can carry between two and 12 years in prison under Indiana law.Besides the Jackson County case, she also faced a misdemeanor charge in adjacent Bartholomew County stemming from the same May 26 incident in which she was accused of stealing from an outlet mall and leading police on a high-speed chase through multiple counties.According to a probable cause affidavit from Edinburgh Police Deputy Chief Hector Mercado, Chappell was seen running out of a Polo Ralph Lauren store "with a large pile of clothing" before getting into a white Chevy Impala with a Kentucky plate and driving off.The officer notified ISP, which located Chappell's car on I-65 a few minutes later around the 54-mile marker. Trooper Korry Clark pulled Chappell over and ordered her to hand over the car keys, according to an affidavit. When she refused, Clark tried to remove her from the vehicle, but Chappell drove away, injuring Clark's arm.Clark and another officer pursued Chappell, at times reaching over 100 mph, according to Clark's affidavit. Officers attempted to use stop sticks to get Chappell to stop, and one trooper injured his finger in the process.Chappell hit a road sign near the 7-mile marker in Sellersburg and then ran on foot toward an off ramp where police were able to tase and handcuff her, Clark wrote. Chappell had blood drawn and was examined for back pain at Schneck hospital before being taken to the Jackson County Jail.More than $3,200 in stolen merchandise was recovered from Chappell's car, police wrote, and Chappell was allegedly part of a larger group stealing from Polo.Court records show Chappell's attorney filed a request in June to reduce her bond, but a judge denied the motion July 8.Prosecutors in both counties have filed motions to dismiss the cases in light of Chappell's death.Reach Tessa Duvall at tduvall@courier-journal.com and 502-582-4059. Twitter: @TessaDuvall.

Louisville Police Might Be Withholding Body Cam Footage From Breonna Taylor's Shooting

By |2021-07-20T09:06:11-04:00July 20th, 2021|Breonna Taylor|

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings) By Benjamin Porter and Cassie Larson LOUISVILLE, KY – A new lawsuit filed on behalf of the family of Breonna Taylor alleges that the Louisville Metro Police Department might have lied and misled regarding the existence of police body camera videos from the night of Breonna Taylor’s death, and that the police might still be withholding such footage. Attorneys Sam Aguiar and Chymez Bradshaw explain in the new lawsuit that evidence suggests that body camera footage from during the execution of the no-knock warrant that led to Taylor’s death likely does exist, and that Metro have failed to provide the records after their initial request on June 1, 2021. Thus, Chymez and Bradshaw are now requesting an injunction ordering the defendant, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, to disclose the requested public records and for an expedited briefing schedule and a hearing on the matter to occur as soon as possible. The suit states that after the death of Taylor, Metro “indicated that there was no footage of the incident or the circumstances leading up to the shooting.” Metro has also said that many of the members of LMPD present for the raid either “did not have body cameras issued or otherwise did not activate their cameras.” But this is a point of contention. Aguiar and Bradshaw write that while the general public has been led to believe that manual activation is the only method by which police body cameras can be controlled to start and stop recording, the Axon Flex 2 model used by the LMPD can in fact be turned on and off by a second method since it is compatible with signal technology using a Bluetooth connection. Because most of the marked and unmarked police vehicles at the scene were equipped with a signaling unit that had their “lightbars” activated during the raid, then signals would have been sent that would have automatically activated the body cameras of nearby police officers, within a range of about 30 feet. One officer in a vehicle with the lightbar activated “pulled his vehicle to a location which had James, Cosgrove, Campbell, Mattingly, and Hoover nearby.” Those are the officers who were directly involved in the shooting of Taylor. If the body cameras were docked and stored properly after the incident, with “no tampering of the devices or associated storage prior to the docking,” then “audit trails should assist in verifying whether Metro has been truthful to the public regarding the existence of the footage,” the lawsuit states. “Simply put, it would have been difficult for most of the LMPD members with body cameras and who were associated with CID events at Breonna’s and/or Elliott Ave. on March 12/13, 2020 to not have had their Axon body cameras activated at one point or another,” the lawsuit states. On June 1, 2021, Aguiar and Bradshaw made an open records request to Metro for the audit trail logs for the body cameras of several LMPD members for usage in March 2020. Unless the public record is “in active use, in storage or not otherwise available,” the custodian of the record must designate a “place, time, and date for inspection” of the record no more than five days after the receipt of the application. If this does not happen within five days, then the custodian must provide a detailed explanation of the cause for delay and specify the earliest date that the record will be available for inspection.” However, their request was not acknowledged until June 11, when John A. Slone, a paralegal for the LMPD Open Records Division, said he had emailed their IT department about the request and was waiting to hear back. Three days later, on June 14, Slone informed Aguiar and Bradshaw that IT said it would “take three weeks to fulfill your request.” Despite contending that “pulling audit trails is not a lengthy or time consuming task,” Bradshaw and Aguiar decided not to raise an objection to the identified delay given that they had requested the audit trails for “numerous” officers. But on July 6, 2021, the three week period lapsed with Metro failing to provide the records. According to the lawsuit, “Metro has not complied with its own unilateral extension for production of the records” and “Metro has not cited any KRS 61.878(4) exemptions [under the Open Records Act] and has no legitimate grounds to do so.” Toward the end of the suit, Bradshaw and Aguiar emphasize that they have “met their obligations” under the Open Records Act and that examining these records, especially for a case of such “local, national and worldwide concern” is in the public interest, “even though such examination may cause inconvenience or embarrassment to public officials or others.”

Go to Top