LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Courier Journal, which is part of the USA TODAY Network, and ABC News launched a documentary Friday night on the life and death of Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old black woman who was shot dead in her apartment by Louisville police and has since become a national symbol of the racial justice movement.
The 20/20 and Courier Journal, two-hour special, was a comprehensive look at the case that led police to the door of Taylor’s apartment on March 13, the ensuing investigation into his death, the protests that have gripped Louisville since May and the legacy of Taylor by police. reform.
It features talks with Taylor’s family and their attorneys, LMPD Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker, reporters who covered the story, as well as personal videos and photos from Taylor’s life on his signature and his jokes with friends.
(You can watch it here on demand on ABC and Hulu by going to abcnews.com)
Here are five takeaways from “Breonna Taylor: Say Her Name”.
‘To know her is to love her’
Taylor’s family and loved ones describe her as the “star of the show” and a “diva” who enjoyed spending time with her family.
“To know her is to love her,” said her mother, Tamika Palmer. “She’s so much like me, but she’s so much better than me.
Palmer showed ABC her daughter’s album, including photos from the prom and graduation, as well as notes she had written.
“I was God’s blessing to my mother,” Palmer read. “She brought me to this world as her first child, her first baby girl. From that day on, I lived to please my mother. I feel like I owe the world to her.”
Palmer spoke to the Courier Journal in July about his decision to go into activism following Taylor’s death.
Ex-boyfriend’s ties led police to Breonna Taylor’s apartment
Louisville Metro Police officers were targeting Jamarcus Glover, Taylor’s ex-boyfriend, as part of an ongoing narcotics investigation.
For months, agents from a newly formed local investigative unit monitored Glover and his associates, monitoring his car and setting up a camera outside his alleged pharmacy on Elliott Avenue in the Russell neighborhood of Louisville’s West End. .
In January, police saw Glover drive to Taylor’s apartment 10 miles away and leave with a package before heading to a “known drug house”. Police believed Taylor may have held drugs and money for Glover, and Glover used Taylor’s address as his, according to multiple documents.
But, Glover told the Courier Journal in August, Taylor was never involved in drugs or anything illegal, and said he only had clothes and shoes sent to his apartment.
Meanwhile, the warrant the LMPD obtained to search Taylor’s apartment has since been called into question.
Chaos ruled the night police killed Breonna Taylor
More than eight months after the shooting that left Taylor dead in her hallway, police and Taylor’s boyfriend still disagree on what happened at around 12:40 a.m. when seven officers knocked on the door of the apartment and forced her to open it with a ram.
Mattingly told the Courier Journal and ABC in an interview in October that he knocked on the door on several occasions, claiming police had a search warrant.
Breonna Taylor:Brett Hankison, only officer fired in case, prosecuted for alleged sexual assault
Inside, Walker said he had never heard them and believed intruders were breaking and entering.
After Walker fired a shot from his Glock, allegedly hitting Mattingly, police responded. Mattingly shot six rounds, Detective Myles Cosgrove 16 and Detective Brett Hankison 10.
Taylor was hit six times, including in the pulmonary artery.
After police ordered Walker out of the apartment, officers asked if he or Taylor had shot the police. Walker lied and said it was Taylor, later telling police he panicked saying this.
SWAT agents rushed to the scene, believing Taylor may be armed and still inside the apartment. Hankison told other officers they encountered rifle fire, even though Walker fired a single shot from his legally owned Glock handgun.
SWAT arrived to see patrol cars everywhere and officers armed with rifles targeting Taylor’s apartment building.
“What the (expletive),” can be heard an officer say on body camera footage. “Jesus.”
‘That’s it?’ after the indictment of an officer
When a judge read the grand jury indictment on September 23 as part of the Breonna Taylor investigation and everyone learned that an officer was indicted, there was a common refrain: ” That’s it?
“That’s it?” Mattingly’s wife Nicki Mattingly said as they watched the news together in a moment captured on a home video.
“That’s it?” protesters called in Jefferson Square Park, the center of the Breonna Taylor movement in Louisville since May 28. “Is this the only accusation?”
“What about the other two?” asked a woman.
“Suddenly all I hear is women crying,” says Linda Sarsour, co-founder of Until Freedom.
Related:Officers’ records during the filming of Breonna Taylor will be public with restrictions and judge rules
Hankison, who was fired from the LMPD for shooting “indiscriminately” in Taylor’s apartment, has been charged with three counts of gratuitous endangerment for bullets he fired in an occupied apartment next to Taylor, but not for endangering Taylor herself.
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron told the public and reporters that the grand jurors “agreed” that Mattingly and Cosgrove were justified in using deadly force.
Three grand jurors later came forward to say they wanted to lay more charges against the officers.
Breonna Taylor’s legacy lives on as a symbol of a movement
Breonna Taylor has become synonymous with the Black Lives Matter and Say Her Name movements, with protesters around the world chanting her name and celebrities, athletes and politicians taking up her cause.
Since Taylor’s death, proposals for “Breonna’s Law” have emerged across the country, seeking to ban the use of no-beating search warrants like the one obtained for his apartment.
Louisville banned controversial warrants in June, and cities and police departments across the country followed suit. Virginia also banned the practice last month, and lawmakers in Kentucky and Pennsylvania have proposed similar bills.
Additionally, when Taylor’s mother settled her $ 12 million civil lawsuit with the city of Louisville in September, she secured a series of police reforms as part of the deal.
The changes aim to strengthen officers’ links with the community, reform the search warrant process and make officers more accountable and their actions more transparent.
“I hate that she had to die to be great,” Palmer said.
Follow Louisville reporter Tessa Duvall on Twitter: @TessaDuvall.