Cop Involved in Breonna Taylor Shooting to Be Fired

'Shock to the conscience,' Louisville police chief says of Brett Hankison's conduct in fatal March shooting
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 19, 2020 1:07 PM CDT

One of the police officers in Louisville, Ky., involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor is getting the boot from his job. The Courier Journal reports that termination proceedings have begun against Brett Hankison, one of three cops to fire into the 26-year-old EMT's apartment on March 13 while executing a no-knock warrant in a narcotics probe. Per WLKY, a letter from interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder says Hankison breached two routine operating procedures: use of deadly force, as well as obedience to rules and regulations. "These are extreme violations to our policies," Schroeder writes. "I find your conduct a shock to the conscience. I am alarmed and stunned you used deadly force in this fashion."

Among the things that shocked Schroeder, per his letter, is that Hankison fired 10 rounds into a patio door and window for Taylor's apartment, both of which were covered, which means Hankison wouldn't have been able to see if there was an immediate threat or innocent bystanders on the other side. Sadiqa Reynolds, the president and CEO of the Louisville Urban League, calls Hankison's firing a "long overdue step." An attorney for Taylor's family, meanwhile, had a more succinct take. "It's about damn time," he said, per the AP. "Let's hope that this is a start to some good, strong criminal proceedings." The two other officers involved in the shooting, Myles Cosgrove and Jonathan Mattingly, are currently on administrative reassignment. None of the three has been charged with a crime. (More Breonna Taylor stories.)

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