Kentucky Attorney General Requests to Delay Release of Grand Jury Transcript, Recording in Breonna Taylor Case

Nicole Rojas
Sep 30, 2020 - 11:44

The North Star has dropped its paywall during this COVID-19 crisis so that pertinent information and analysis is available to everyone during this time. This is only possible because of the generous support of our members. We rely on these funds to pay our staff to continue to provide high-quality content. If you are able to support, we invite you to do so here.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s office requested an additional week to redact personal information from the grand jury recording of the Breonna Taylor case. Cameron’s office was ordered to file the transcript in a court by noon on Sept. 30. 

Cameron’s request seeks additional time for redactions “in the interests of protection of witnesses, and in particular private citizens named in the recordings,” WDRB reported. 

The attorney general’s spokeswoman, Elizabeth Kuhn, said in a statement to reporters that the recording is more than 20 hours long and includes information such as addresses and phone numbers. Kuhn told the Louisville Courier Journal that the judge is expected to rule on the request on Sept. 30. 

Cameron’s office added that attorneys for former Detective Brett Hankison, the only person charged in connection to the fatal raid, agreed to the delay. Hankison was charged on three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment in connection to the fatal shooting. 

In March, Hankison and several other officers from the Louisville Metro Police Department barged into Taylor’s apartment on a no-knock warrant and fired indiscriminately at Taylor and her boyfriend, Kenny Walker. Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT who was asleep in bed at the time of the raid, was shot at least six times and killed. 

Six months later, a grand jury decided against indicting Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove for their roles in the fatal shooting. None of the officers involved were charged with murdering Taylor. 

Cameron Did Not Recommend Charges Against Two Officers

In an exclusive interview with WDRB on Sept. 29, Cameron revealed that he did not recommend charges against Mattingly or Cosgrove. 

“They are an independent body. If they wanted to make an assessment about different charges, they could have done that. But our recommendation was that Mattingly and Cosgrove were justified in their acts and their conduct,” Cameron told WDRB. 

Cameron, who previously claimed he presented the grand jury with “all the evidence,” admitted that he only recommended one of the charges brought against Hankison. 

“Ultimately our judgment is that the charge that we could prove at trial beyond a reasonable doubt was for wanton endangerment against Mr. Hankison,” he said.

Grand Juror Claims Cameron Misrepresented Panel’s Discussions

The ruling to release the recording and transcript comes days after one grand juror filed a court motion claiming that the panel’s discussions were inaccurately represented by Cameron. The motion asked for the release of the recording and transcript, as well as the permission to speak openly about the charges and defendants considered, according to the Courier-Journal

“The public deserves to know everything,” Kevin Glogower, attorney for the grand juror, said in a press conference. 

Taylor’s family and attorneys said they supported the release of the transcript and maintained that Cameron failed to present “a comprehensive case that supported justice for Breonna.” 

“We fully support the call to release the entire proceeding transcript as the only way to know what evidence was presented and how the grand jury instructions led to this outcome,” Taylor’s family and attorneys Ben Crump, Sam Aguiar and Lonita Baker said in a statement to The North Star

“In America, law-abiding citizens—including Black citizens—have the right to live peacefully in their homes, without police breaking down their doors in the middle of the night, and they have a right to protect themselves and their property from intruders. The police cannot claim their use of force was justified when they wrongly broke into Breonna’s apartment in the first place. We urge the Attorney General to release a COMPLETE and UNEDITED copy of the recording, along with any and all evidence in Bre’s case.” 

The judge in the case is expected to decide on Sept. 30 if Cameron’s office has another week to redact information from the transcript and recording. 

About the Author

Nicole Rojas is a senior writer for The North Star. She has published in various publications, including Newsweek, GlobalPost, IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, and the Long Island Post. Nicole graduated from Boston University in 2012 with a degree in print journalism. She is an avid world traveler who recently explored Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas.

Leave a Reply

Become a member and join TheNorthStar

Join Over 25, 000 members from all 50 states and 100+ countries to
help build and sustain the most courageous Community of liberation
journalism in the world.

More From The North Star

March on Washington 2020 Live...

March on Washington 2020 Live Blog: Thousands Gather in D.C. to End Police Brutality...Read More

Maria Perez, Nicole Rojas & Micah Schaffer
1

U.S. Election 2020: Live...

U.S. Election 2020: Live Updates of the Political Showdown...Read More

0

#InTheseTweets |...

#InTheseTweets | Thirty-Seventh Edition...Read More

Donney Rose
0

See more articles from Nicole Rojas

Follow Nicole Rojas to see more of their article on TheNorth