It’s been exactly two months and a day since police killed Breonna Taylor in her own home, but the world has just now learned about the tragedy.
As reported by The Washington Post, Louisville police officers shot Taylor, a 26-yeard old EMT who aspired to be a nurse and had no criminal record, at least eight times during an erroneous “no-knock” drug search warrant. The warrant not only didn’t include the victim’s name, but it was also issued for a home miles away that belonged to two men who were already in custody.
The victim’s family filed a lawsuit on April 27, accusing officers of “wrongful death, excessive force, and gross negligence,” and is seeking answers of why they were quick to fire more than 20 rounds of projectiles at a civilian. “Not one person has talked to me. Not one person has explained anything to me,” Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mother, said to The Washington Post. “I want justice for her. I want them to say her name. There’s no reason Breonna should be dead at all.”
According to the lawsuit, the shooting started when the police officers forcefully tried to enter the apartment, and Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, a licensed gun owner, aimed and shot at the officers thinking burglars were trying to break into the residence.
As of this writing, none of the officers involved in the shoot out have been charged, but Walker was arrested and is facing charges of first-degree assault and attempted murder of a police officer, as reported by Refinery29.
The Louisville Metro Police Department spokeswoman Jessie Halladay said in a statement, “There is an ongoing public integrity investigation into this case and therefore it would be inappropriate for us to comment at this time.”
Ben Crump, attorney for Ahmaud Arbery, a South Georgia man killed while jogging by two armed white men, said that Taylor’s death was overshadowed by the pandemic headlines.
“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,” he said.
“She was an essential worker. She had to go to work,” Palmer said. “She didn’t have a problem with that. … To not be able to sleep in her own bed without someone busting down her door and taking her life. I was just like, ‘Make sure you wash your hands!’ Palmer said.
Trying to raise awareness about the tragedy, Taylor’s sister, Ju’Niyah Palmer, is using social media to post pictures with the hashtag #JusticeForBre.
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Breonna Taylor was born on June 5, 1993 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She was an accomplished EMT for the city of Louisville and worked full-time as an ER technician. She was an essential worker at two hospitals before she was killed. She loved life and her family, and was always finding ways to better herself and the lives of people around her. She was a daughter, a granddaughter, a sister, a niece, a friend and a hero. Breonna was murdered on March 13th, when officers from the Louisville Metro Police Department performed an illegal, unannounced drug raid on the wrong home. They shot Breonna eight times and killed her while she was sleeping in her bed. Her boyfriend was arrested and is being charged with attempted murder for trying to protect his household. There has been no justice for Breonna. It is our job to share Breonna’s story, and it is time for white people to do more then just the bare minimum when it comes to fighting against white supremacist and police terrorism. Follow the action steps above (swipe left) and demand that these officers be held accountable. Don’t stop fighting and don’t stop saying her name. #BreonnaTaylor #JusticeForBre #SayHerName
“I’m just getting awareness for my sister, for people to know who she is, what her name is,” said Ju’Niyah Palmer. “It is literally just as equal (as the fallen men.) There’s no difference.”