Kentucky AG Office and Officer In Breonna Taylor Raid Both Argue To Keep Investigative Materials From Public

Kentucky AG Office and Officer In Breonna Taylor Raid Both Argue To Keep Investigative Materials From Public https://ift.tt/eA8V8J

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron and an attorney for the former police officer charged for his actions in the raid that killed Breonna Taylor argued Wednesday to keep investigative materials from being released to the public.

The arguments against releasing the investigative materials have come after the Louisville Courier-Journal asked for the materials to be filed as part of the court’s public record. An attorney representing the paper argued the public has a right to know how former officer Brett Hankison‘s case is being handled.

Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment for shooting into the apartments of Taylor’s neighbors on the night of the incident.

In Kentucky, wanton endangerment is a Class D felony, punishable with fines of up to $10,000 and up to five years in prison. The other two officers, Myles Cosgrove and Jonathan Mattingly, were not charged because, according to Cameron, Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, admitted to firing the first shot when he thought the cops were burglars.

“I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say the judicial system, in some sense, is on trial here,” an attorney representing the Courier-Journal, Michael Abate, argued, according to CNN. “The public has a right and need to see, not only the evidence in this case, but how the attorney general and the commonwealth have handled this case.”
The Courier-Journal reported Wednesday two of the grand jurors in the Taylor case believe the other three officers in the case should also face criminal charges for their actions that night.

“Do I feel that justice was done?” grand juror No. 1, said in a phone interview Wednesday, according to the Courier-Journal. “No. I feel that there was quite a bit more that could have been done or should have been presented for us to deliberate on.”

“We looked at a lot of evidence,” added grand juror No. 2, “and we were able to see probable cause in a lot of different situations.”

The two jurors, who have decided to remain anonymous, could not say who should be charged and what they should be charged with because the state’s homicide laws were never outlined to them by Cameron and prosecutors during the grand jury proceedings.

Police officials and Cameron have not commented on what the jurors have said. Hankison’s attorney, William Stewart Matthews, argued if the materials are released, it will be difficult to find jurors who aren’t prejudiced by the public’s intent to get Taylor justice .

However, Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Ann Bailey Smith said that Cameron has publicized much of the Taylor case himself, including the news conference to announce the charges against Hankison and entries on the attorney general’s website on how to obtain information presented to the grand jury.

“It has been publicized. It’s been publicized by your office. I think it’s a little late to walk that back now,” Smith said, according to CNN.

Smith has yet to make a decision on releasing the materials and it is unknown when one will be made. A second pretrial hearing in the case is scheduled for January 20 at 10:30 a.m.

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