New body camera footage obtained by Vice News purportedly shows what happened on March 13 in the moments after Louisville Metro Police officers raided the home of Breonna Taylor, who was shot and killed.
One video shows an officer, which Vice News says appears to be former Detective Brett Hankison, entering Taylor’s apartment after the shootings and ask about shell casings that are on the floor. He’s soon told by another unidentified officer that he should “back out” until LMPD’s Public Integrity Unit arrives. Hankison’s attorney declined to comment on the video.
No officer who took part in the March 13 raid was charged for Taylor’s actual killing. A grand jury instead leveled three counts of felony wanton endangerment against Hankison, state Attorney General Daniel Cameron said last week. The counts pertain to Hankison allegedly firing blindly through a door and window, with bullets entering an adjacent apartment where a pregnant woman, a man and a child were home, according to the state attorney general.
Hankison pleaded not guilty to the charges on Monday.
In another video, which Vice News says was the moment Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker was arrested, an unidentified officer can be heard yelling instructions to “walk backwards” and to “place your hands in the air and get on your knees” as the officer threatens to let his service dog loose if Walker does not comply.
Walker’s attorney, Steve Romines, said he’s seen the footage as part of his representation to Walker and confirmed its accuracy.
Initially, a Jefferson County grand jury indicted Walker on charges of attempted murder of a police officer and assault. In May, Walker’s defense attorney, Rob Eggert, filed a motion to have the indictment dismissed, alleging the grand jury had been misled by prosecutors.
The charges were then dismissed by Thomas Wine, the Commonwealth’s Attorney for Jefferson County. He said he disagreed that grand jurors had been misled when Walker was indicted, but agreed that it was important for them to hear from Walker directly before deciding whether to indict. If, after further investigation, the case was brought back to the grand jury, Wine said, Walker would be given that opportunity.
Romines maintains that Walker did not shoot Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly in the thigh and that a ballistics report from the Kentucky State Police does not support the prosecution’s assertion that the one bullet Walker fired struck Mattingly.
“The ballistics subsequently came back from the Kentucky state police and determined that the shot that they claimed hit Officer Mattingly, they could not determine it was fired from (Walker’s) gun,” Romines told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Friday.
Walker has filed a $10.5 million lawsuit alleging malicious prosecution, false arrest and assault. He was defending himself with a licensed firearm when plainclothes police “violently broke down the door,” he alleges. The lawsuit cites the “stand your ground” law.
There was no video or body camera footage of the officers as they attempted to execute the search warrant at Breonna Taylor’s home, Cameron said at a news conference last week in which he announced charges against Hankison. Cameron said that body camera footage begins at the point when area patrol officers arrived at the location.
The Louisville Metro Police Department issued a statement to CNN saying, “We have no comment on this matter. This file has not been released by the department at this time. Our internal review of this case is ongoing so it would not be appropriate to comment.”
Taylor’s family’s attorneys when asked about the videos say they are not authorized to comment on the confidential case files, which are under a protective order.
Sam Aguiar, Taylor’s family’s attorney, said in a press conference Friday that there are as many as 50 videos from LMPD body cameras taken from the night Taylor was killed.
To date, Louisville Metro police department and Kentucky state officials have maintained that police officers executing the late-night, no-knock warrant on March 13 were not wearing body cameras. The Louisville mayor’s office did not reply to a request for comment. The Kentucky attorney general’s office also did not return a request for comment.