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City of Louisville expected to announce 'substantial' settlement in Breonna Taylor shooting

By Jessica Schladebeck, New York Daily News on

Published in News & Features

The city of Louisville has reportedly reached a "substantial" financial settlement with the family of Breonna Taylor, a Black EMT who was fatally shot in her Kentucky home during a no-knock drug raid back in March.

The agreement, which will also include several policing reforms, is slated to be announced Tuesday afternoon, a source close to the matter told the Courier Journal. It comes six months after Taylor's death sparked protests nationwide, with demonstrators demanding criminal charges be brought in the case.

The 26-year-old was shot and killed after Louisville Metro Police officers broke down her door on March 13 to serve a search warrant in connection with a man who did not live at residence. Taylor had just tucked into bed for the night with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, when cops arrived at the apartment in search of drugs, cash and other evidence linked to a narcotics investigation.

The commotion drew Walker from bed, and then he fired a warning shot, which authorities said struck Sgt. John Mattingly in the thigh. He said he did not realize the officers, dressed in plainclothes at the time, were associated with the police department.

Mattingly returned fire alongside another two detectives, identified as Brett Hankison and Myles Cosgrove.

Taylor was struck eight times and died on the scene.

In response, her family filed a wrongful death lawsuit on April 27, accusing the officers of excessive force and negligence in their search of Taylor's South End apartment.

According to WAVE 3, the settlement is expected to be one of the biggest sums of money the city has ever given out to settle allegations of police misconduct.

 

The largest amount paid so far was a hefty $8.5 million to Edwin Chandler in 2012, who was wrongfully imprisoned for more than nine years after Det. Mark Handy perjured himself.

The recently achieved agreement is also expected to include updates to police department policy, including a requirement that commanders approve all search warrants before they go to a judge. It also will provide housing credits to officers who agree to live within the city in addition to seeking drug and alcohol testing for officers involved in any future shooting.

"The city's response in this case has been delayed and it's been frustrating, but the fact that they've been willing to sit down and talk about significant reform was a step in the right direction," attorney Sam Aguilar said in a statement to CNN.

A Jefferson County grand jury in Kentucky is currently mulling whether to bring criminal charges in the deadly shooting. While Hankison has been fired over the matter, there have been no charges filed in the case.

Both Cosgrove and Mattingly remained on administrative reassignment on Tuesday.

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