New police interviews reveal that the home of Breonna Taylor was a “soft target.” The officers that invaded her apartment that night knew that she posed little danger. They also knew that their suspect was likely at another location.
Police named Jamarcus Glover as one of their prime suspects. They arrested Glover the same night three officers broke down Tayor’s door. Therefore, co-counsels Aguiar and Baker feel there was no cause for forced entry. Sgt. John Mattingly has echoed this sentiment.
Current information available on the case reveals a few things. Firstly, the officers did have a no-knock warrant but claim they knocked. Secondly, the judge signed five no-knock warrants for that night. Third: at least one officer was agitated before entering the apartment. Fourth: one of the officers shot and killed Taylor.
Mattingly claims they were told to knock. He also insists that they complied. “Our intent was to give her plenty of time to come to the door because they said she was probably there alone.” The warrant was signed as a no-knock warrant, but experts argue that was unjustified.
Prior to entering, Mattingly recalls that fellow officer Brett Hankison was agitated. He recalls an angry upstairs neighbor yelling down at the officers, “Leave that girl alone.” Hankison raised his voice in return. Mattingly describes it as follows: “I remember Brett extending his gun, saying, ‘Get back in your apartment, get back in your apartment.’ …I remember looking at Brett saying, ‘Brett, relax, Brett, just relax, relax.”
Walker, woken up by the battering ram, emerged with his gun drawn. He fired what he called a warning shot, believing officers to be intruders. It hit Mattingly in the leg and all three officers returned fire. A bullet struck and killed Taylor in her hallway. Police have not yet revealed which officer the bullet belonged to.
In the months since, Interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder fired Hankison. He also gave administrative reassignment to Mattingly and the last officer, Myles Cosgrove. Many members of the public have pushed back against improper use of force. Walker told investigators that an officer asked him, “Where you hit by any bullets?” When he said no, the officer replied, “That’s unfortunate.”
None of the three officers involved in the shooting are currently facing criminal charges.