Beyoncé Writes Letter Demanding Kentucky Attorney General Take Action In Breonna Taylor's Case
The letter points to a number of questionable details in the police report.
June 15, 2020 at 5:45 pm
Three months after police shot and killed 26-year-old Breonna Taylor in her Louisville, Kentucky, home, the officers involved in the incident are still free. The public has been organizing mass protests across the country since the death of Taylor, demanding justice for the EMS worker.
"It has now been over three months since members of the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) killed Breonna Taylor," the singer wrote. "Plainclothes officers with a 'no-knock' warrant forced their way into her apartment, where she was asleep and unarmed. Moments later, the officers fired over twenty shots into Breonna Taylor's home, striking her at least eight times."
Beyoncé demanded the attorney general take action against Jonathan Mattingly, Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankison, who are still employed after carrying out the shooting on March 13. The singer urged for criminal charges against the officers and demanded transparency in the investigation. She also instructed the attorney general to start focusing on "the pervasive practices that result in the repeated deaths of unarmed Black citizens."
The 38-year-old icon credited Louisville for passing reforms such as Breonna's Law, which bans law enforcement from serving a warrant without making their presence known, as Blavity previously reported. Still, the Grammy-winning artist wants to see a lot more.
"These small steps in the right direction are painful reminders that there has still been no justice for Breonna Taylor or her family," Beyoncé wrote.
The letter also points to a number of questionable details in the police report, including the description of Taylor's injuries. The victim's injuries in the report were described as "none," CBS News reported.
"Their incident report states that Ms. Taylor suffered no injuries — yet we know she was shot at least eight times," Beyoncé wrote in her letter.
According to CBS News, police also said there was no forced entry when they went into Taylor's home, but witnesses gave a different account and crime scene photos revealed the officers forced their way into the home with a battering ram.
"The LMPD officers claim they announced themselves before forcing their way into Ms. Taylor's apartment — but her boyfriend who was with her, as well as several neighbors, all say that this is untrue," Beyoncé wrote.
Taylor is one of several Black citizens who have become victims of police brutality, particularly in recent months as the problem continues to escalate. George Floyd sparked protests across the world after he was killed by police on Memorial Day. Rayshard Brooks became the latest victim when he was shot and killed by Atlanta police on Friday, as Blavity previously reported.
Beyoncé urged the attorney general to make sure Taylor's case doesn't "fall into the pattern of no action after a terrible tragedy."
"With every death of a Black person at the hands of the police, there are two real tragedies: the death itself, and the inaction and delays that follow it," she wrote. "This is your chance to end that pattern. Take swift and decisive action in charging the officers."