Washington, D.C., June 5, 2020 - Today, on what should have been her 27th birthday, Brady reiterates its call for justice and accountability in the police shooting of Breonna Taylor. Breonna Taylor was killed in her home by police in Louisville, Kentucky, on March 13.
Eighty four days after her death, serious questions remain regarding why police entered her apartment and shot her eight times, while the FBI has opened an investigation into the case, no charges have been brought.
In May, Brady called for an independent and transparent investigation into her death. We need answers and accountability, and join with her family in demanding justice in her name. We cannot forget about or overlook Black women in calls for justice. We must say Breonna’s name and remain focused on ensuring that her family receives answers and justice.
Brady Constitutional Litigation Counsel Kelly Sampson shared:
“Over the past few weeks, we have seen Americans all across the country demand justice and accountability for Breonna Taylor and other victims of police violence. On her birthday, we must recognize that we are still waiting for justice for Breonna Taylor. Her family deserves answers. Her memory deserves justice.
There must be change. Black people are disproportionately killed in police shootings. Last year, Black Americans were 24 percent of all police-involved shooting fatalities. We are 2.5 times more likely to be killed by police than white Americans. We cannot discuss policing and police violence without discussing this reality. We cannot solve this problem without addressing systemic racism in our country. We need justice and accountability for Breonna Taylor and we need action to ensure no families have to endure the same pain and uncertainty that hers has.
Breonna Taylor’s family remembers her as someone who loved to sing and cook and would play cards with her aunt. That she is not with her friends and family to celebrate today is a tragedy. That her family does not have answers is inexcusable.
We cannot forget Breonna Taylor. And, we cannot accept less than full accountability in her case.”
Actions to Take:
Say her name. As protests against police violence continue across the country, we must continue to ensure we honor Breonna Taylor and Black women. Continue to say her name and use #BreonnaTaylor, #SayHerName, and #BirthdayForBreonna on social media.
Show up. For those in Louisville, Breonna Taylor’s family has organized a vigil ceremony and balloon release on Saturday, June 6 to commemorate and honor her. They request that participants bring blue, silver, white, or cream balloons. For those not in Louisville, say her name if you are joining a peaceful protest.
Speak Up. Tell elected officials in Kentucky that you want to see justice in this case. Breonna Taylor’s family is still waiting for answers.
About the Case:
On March 13, Breonna Taylor was shot and killed by police in her home in Louisville, Kentucky. Three police officers entered her apartment using a battering ram around 1:00 a.m. to serve a ‘no-knock’ search warrant in a narcotics case. The warrant included Breonna Taylor’s apartment, as police believed that the subject of a drug investigation had used her apartment to receive mail.
Taylor and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, were asleep and awoke when the officers entered. Believing that their apartment was being broken into, Walker used his licensed firearm to fire at the intruders. The officers returned fire, shooting 20 rounds in the apartment and killing Taylor. Walker was charged with first-degree assault and attempted murder of a police officer. Those charges have since been dropped.
Though police have maintained that they knocked and identified themselves, multiple neighbors have stated in a lawsuit filed by Taylor’s family that they did not. There is no body camera footage of the events.
Taylor’s family has since filed a lawsuit against the three officers involved charging wrongful death, excessive force and gross negligence and the FBI opened an investigation into the case. On May 29, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer suspended all “no-knock” search warrants. On June 3, Mayor Fischer announced that the city would likewise hire an outside firm to review the city’s police department.
As of Taylor’s birthday, June 5, her family is still waiting for answers and for justice.
Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.