Breonna Taylor protests erupt across the U.S. and 2 police officers shot

breonna taylor

Protesters took to the streets in cities across the U.S. after Kentucky grand jury indicted a former Louisville police detective involved in the March 13 shooting death of 26-year-old Breonna Taylor. Louisville police said two officers have been shot and a suspect is in custody.

Protesters took to the streets from Texas to Rhode Island Wednesday night as demonstrations honoring Breonna Taylor swept the U.S.

Reports from Louisville, Ky. said:

Residents reacted with frustration and anger on Wednesday.

The three officers who fired their weapons at Taylor’s home – Det. Brett Hankison, Sgt. Jon Mattingly and Det. Miles Cosgrove – were not indicted in Taylor’s death.

Hankison, who was fired from the police department in June, was charged with three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment for shooting into Taylor’s apartment from outside, endangering the lives of three people in the apartment next door.

Louisville police chief confirms 2 officers shot

Louisville Metro Police Department chief Robert Schroeder confirmed at a news conference that two officers were shot. Both officers were in stable condition, said Schoeder, who did not reveal the officers’ identity. Both officers are currently undergoing treatment at University of Louisville Hospital. One of the officers is alert and stable, while the other is in surgery and stable, Schroeder said. Schroeder described both officers’ injuries as non-life-threatening.

Schroeder also said a suspect was in custody, but did not provide further details.

Approximately 500 Kentucky National Guard members were sent to Louisville on Wednesday amid the fallout from the grand jury decision in the Breonna Taylor case, the Courier-Journal reported.

The guard members are providing “civil disturbance support” to the Louisville Metro Police Department and are protecting “critical infrastructure sites,” such as hospitals, according to National Guard spokesperson Maj. Stephen Martin.

Huge police presence and the Nat’l Guard at the hospital after reports of at least two officers shot in downtown Louisville tonight… some officers tell me they ran from the scene to the hospital.

One officer was shot in the abdomen below their bulletproof vest and is in surgery, and a second officer was shot in the thigh, the Courier-Journal reported, citing its source.

FBI Louisville sends SWAT team to area where officer was shot

The FBI Louisville SWAT team has responded to the area where a Louisville Metro Police Officers were shot Wednesday night, the agency said in a tweet.

Louisville police deploy flashbangs

Members of the Louisville Metro Police Department deployed several flashbangs at Jefferson Square Park to clear out protesters, the Courier-Journal reported.

Most of the protesters had left the park shortly after 8 p.m. EDT, the newspaper reported.

A few trash fires were still burning.

Louisville police declare unlawful assembly at Jefferson Square Park

Louisville police have declared unlawful assembly at Jefferson Square Park, the Courier-Journal reported. A crowd of protesters that had moved away from the park blocked the intersection outside the federal courthouse, the newspaper reported.

At Jefferson Square Park, multiple fires were started, including one outside the Hall of Justice.

Protesters threw bottles at police and the Hall of Justice.

At least 100 people broke off from the crowd gathered at Louisville’s Jefferson Square Park to begin a march south toward Broadway, the Courier-Journal reported. Protesters chanted “Breeway” and “Breonna Taylor” as they marched, the newspaper reported.

BLM protesters prepare riot shields & ‘ABOLISH POLICE’ signs

One video showed protesters flocking to a parking lot where a waiting U-Haul truck is stocked with prepared “abolish the police” signs and riot shields, which were quickly handed out.

The footage has critics questioning the nature of the protests and claiming that riots, which have afflicted cities across the country for months are “well-coordinated” and “prepared.”

Another video shows protesters blocking an intersection and chanting “burn it down!”

Other video shows demonstrators destroying the outdoor patio to a restaurant in the middle of their protest.

Arson, smashed windows, ransacked cafes

The protests in Louisville erupted earlier on Wednesday after the officers involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor were not charged for her death, with only one officer facing charges for “wanton endangerment” linked to his indiscriminate firing into apartments adjacent to Taylor’s home. The 26-year-old medical technician was killed during a March police raid as plainclothes narcotics officers attempted to serve a search warrant at her apartment.

While the officers involved in the incident were fired, the lack of charges over Taylor’s death has stoked outrage around the country, prompting crowds of protesters to descend on Louisville on Wednesday afternoon. They were seen preparing for clashes with police, with footage showing activists distributing shields and other gear from the back of a U-Haul truck.

Ahead of the city’s 9pm curfew, demonstrators were filmed as they set fires and smashed windows around Jefferson Square park and elsewhere in downtown Louisville.

Lots of windows were smashed throughout this march.

Louisville protesters accuse police of escalating tensions

With sharpshooters atop several buildings and helicopters hovering overhead, protesters accused the authorities of escalating tensions without provocation.

“This was a peaceful protest, and the police are making it worse,” Rica Martin, 39, told the Post, calling the police overly aggressive in their response.

“I pray to God it will be peaceful tonight,” Martin said.

The disturbance began when protesters moved a barricade to allow cars to enter the protest zone near Jefferson Square Park, the Post reported.

Hankison booked, then posts bail

Former Louisville Det. Brett Hankison was booked and released from jail after posting bail early Wednesday evening after he was indicted in the Breonna Taylor case, according to WAVE-TV.

Jail officials confirmed that Hankison arrived at the Shelby County Detention Center and was released around 5 p.m., the television station reported. Hankison posted $15,000 bail.

Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment in the first degree in the case. Each charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Louisville mayor: ‘Let’s turn to each other, not on each other’

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said at a news conference that “this case is far from over” and urged residents to let the legal process play through.

“There are policies and procedures that must be changed,” Fischer said. “I’m sure we will make more changes.”

Fischer said the decision from a Kentucky grand jury has been “a long and agonizing wait” and asked for calm.

“Let’s turn to each other, not on each other,” Fischer said.

Louisville arrest jumps to 46

According to CNN, police in Louisville made up to 46 arrests as protesters took to the downtown streets.

NY demonstrators ‘peaceful’

A massive show of solidarity remained on display just before midnight in New York on Wednesday with hundreds of protesters crowded streets as they begin their trek back from Manhattan to Brooklyn via the Williamsburg Bridge.

“We’re talking about hundreds and hundreds, if not more than 1,000 or so, people out in the streets. It’s a festive atmosphere. There has been drumming, there’s a trumpet player. A guy on roller skates with a guitar, so it’s a festive atmosphere, but they are still angry, I should say … very, very angry about the results of this case,” CNN National Correspondent Athena Jones reported from the scene, characterizing the crowd as “peaceful” and “high energy.

Thousands across NYC protest.

Multiple demonstrations sweep Chicago

At least four protest marches paraded peacefully across Chicago early Wednesday evening as hundreds of people took to the streets.

Hundreds of demonstrators gather around Chicago to peacefully protest that no Kentucky police will face charges in Breonna Taylor’s death.

According to The Washington Post:

  • The Rev. Michael Pfleger, a Catholic priest with St. Sabina Parish, led about 100 people on the city’s far South Side in a march that blocked an intersection at 79th Street and Racine Avenue.
  • About 150 people in Bronzeville stood in front of the Chicago Police headquarters before marching about four blocks north to a park where they called for police reform and denounced Chicago officials. The crowd also took a symbolic knee for Taylor while in the park.
  • Downtown, dozens of protesters gathered on the sidewalk in front of Millennium Park before marching through the Loop, followed by a platoon of Chicago police officers on bicycles and in vehicles.
  • About 300 protesters gathered in Palmer Park to the west before marching north through the neighborhood.

A small but vocal group marched on Michigan Avenue, crossing the Chicago River and moving onto the Magnificent Mile.

Minnesota protesters shut down interstate in St. Paul

Protesters rallied at the Minnesota State Capitol in a collective call for justice for the family of Breonna Taylor and a conviction for former Louisville officer Brett Hankison WCCO reported.

Protesters later walked onto Interstate 94 in St. Paul at about 8 p.m. Wednesday, closing the highway in both directions for 40 minutes, the television station reported.

Protesters spill into D.C. streets

About 200 people protesting the grand jury decision in the Breonna Taylor case marched through downtown Washington, D.C., on Wednesday night.

The primarily peaceful demonstration began at about 9:30 p.m., but minor vandalism in the form of broken windows and overturned newspaper boxes did occur along the route, The Washington Post reported.

In Washington DC, activists were told to wear black and bring gas masks, goggles, etc.

Georgia and Rhode Island

Other reports said:

Georgia State Patrol deployed tear gas at protestors.

Rhode Islanders join protest against decision in Breonna Taylor case.

A group gathered in front of Houston’s city hall tonight to protest the grand jury decisions in the killing of Breonna Taylor.

Thousands of demonstrators are marching to the Manhattan Bridge to protest the Breonna Taylor decision made Wednesday.

Group from Barclays has grown to about 1,500 protestors. Currently crossing the Manhattan Bridge chanting Breonna Taylor’s name.

Ohio State House

Protests outside the @OhioStatehouse in re: to charges an officer received in relation to Breonna Taylor’s death.

East Nashville

In front of the East Nashville branch of the library, about a dozen protesters have gathered.

NBPA condemns grand jury decision

The executive director of the National Basketball Players Association released a statement, condemning the Kentucky grand jury’s decision.

“Sadly, there was no justice today for Breonna Taylor,” Michele Roberts stated. “Her killing was the result of a string of callous and careless decisions made with a lack of regard for humanity, ultimately resulting in the death of an innocent and beautiful woman with her entire life ahead of her. Our players and I once again extend our deepest sympathies to her family and we vow to continue working in her honor and to always say her name.”

Rev. Jesse Jackson discourages violent responses by protesters

Civil rights activist Jesse Jackson took a conciliatory tone Monday afternoon, imploring protesters upset by the lack of criminal charges in the death of Breonna Taylor to avoid reacting with violence.

“We must be smart enough not to turn our anguish and anger into self-destruction, and give Trump a commercial,” Jackson said during a Wednesday news conference with local leaders in Chicago.

Civil rights activist Jesse Jackson encouraged people upset by the lack of criminal charges in the death of Breonna Taylor not to respond with violence.

Jackson also encouraged protesters to boycott “every non-essential service in Kentucky,” CNN reported.

Chicago mayor calls for moment of silence

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot called for a citywide moment of silence Wednesday night to honor Breonna Taylor.

“This ruling is absolutely heartbreaking, and it leaves more questions than it answers,” Lightfoot said.

The moment of silence is scheduled for 7 p.m. local time, and Lightfoot said she is hopeful the city will respect Taylor’s family’s request for peaceful protests, CNN reported.

“I want you to know that I support you and will do everything in my power to protect you as you voice your righteous anger,” Lightfoot said.

Mayor Lightfoot called the decision “absolutely heartbreaking.”

A reporter on the scene claimed the shots were fired directly at the officers, rather than into the air, though he did not specify whether the shooter was affiliated with the ongoing protests.

NAACP: “The justice system failed Breonna Taylor and, as such, failed us”

The NAACP said in a statement following the announcement of the grand jury decision in the Breonna Taylor case that the justice system “failed” her and the charges against one officer do “not go far enough.”

“The injustice we’re witnessing at this moment can be sensed throughout the nation. Kentucky General Daniel Cameron’s failure to bring substantial charges against the officers who murdered Breonna Taylor causes angst and pain for far too many Americans still reeling from a pandemic. The charges of wanton endangerment in connection with the murder of Breonna Taylor does not go far enough and is a miscarriage of justice for her family and the people of Louisville,” the statement said.

“The justice system failed Breonna Taylor and, as such, failed us,” the statement added.



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