ATTENTION GOV. ANDY BESHEAR, LT GOV. JACQUELINE COLEMAN, DISTRICT ATTORNEY GEN TOM WINE, ATTORNEY GEN. DANIEL CAMERON, SEN. RAND PAUL,
CONGRESSMAN JOHN YARMUTH, MAYOR GREG FISCHER, INTERIM POLICE CHIEF ROBERT SCHROEDER
RE: THE MURDER OF BREONNA TAYLOR BY OFFICERS JOHN MATTINGLY, MILES COSGROVE AND BRETT HANKISON
This is my second letter to public officials in your state. I feel like this is much more than just a legal decision to make. This is also a moral decision. An innocent, young, promising American citizen was killed in your state at the hands of law enforcement officers who took oaths to protect and serve her. There are standards. There is a care that must be taken in every profession. For police work, because of the nature of it, it’s of the utmost importance that these standards be upheld. In this case, all I see with these three officers is negligence and a reckless disregard for human life.
The reality that Breonna Taylor was shot 8 times is not an unfortunate mistake. It was pure recklessness that resulted in the death of a 26-year old woman who did not get to live to get married, have children and excel in her career as a front line worker serving the citizens of your state who may have needed her. Her partner has lost the woman he loved forever. The life that was Breonna is gone forever. In other professions, this level of negligence and disregard for a person’s life would never go unpunished.
Think about how you’d feel if this were your daughter or your niece. Examine the facts of this case as well as the attempt these officers have made to alter and dishonestly omit facts and then tell me that you would not conclude that firing over 20 shots into a house without ever announcing yourself – because we all know these officers went through the trouble of obtaining a no-knock warrant so that they could use the element of surprise and catch citizens who they assumed were criminals with illegal substances in their home – is murder. These officers allowed their desire to get credit for another drug bust to cloud their judgment and overshadow their moral compass. More importantly these officers allowed their agenda to tragically overshadow the rights of the two U.S. citizens in the apartment and those whose apartments where nearby. Did these officers not factor in the possibility that citizens not knowing who was entering their home had a right to defend their safety? Breonna Taylor and her partner Kenneth Walker valued their own lives enough to protect themselves, an action supported by your states Stand Your Ground Law. Just because the actions of these officers illustrate a lack of value with regard to these citizen’s lives, does not mean that Breonna and her boyfriend did not value their own precious right to safety and life. .
You cannot tell me that if this young woman were in your family that you would not make sure each officer was prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. If she were family to you, her life would matter. Breonna mattered to her mother, her father, her family, her friends and her partner who tried to protect her from intruders who applied for a warrant so they could enter unannounced, as unknown entities, under the cover of night. Breonna mattered to all of the people she helped as a front line worker in your state as well as to the people she will never get to help because her bright future as a medical worker was cut short.
Breonna should matter to you. You need to make her life matter to these three officers and any officer that may consider taking part in these type of dangerous, professionally negligent, criminal actions in the future. I am calling for the three police officers, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove to be fired - Brett Hankison has already been fired – and charges for murder brought against all of them.