Louisville police fire 2 detectives connected to Breonna Taylor’s death

Louisville police plans to fire 2 detectives connected to Breonna Taylor’s death

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — City officials on Wednesday announced that two Louisville police officers involved in the police raid that claimed the life of 26-year-old Breonna Taylor have been fired from the department.

Update 1:30 p.m. ET Jan. 6: Officials confirmed the firings of detectives Myles Cosgrove and Joshua Jaynes at a news conference Wednesday, according to The Associated Press.

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Officials determined Cosgrove, who fired the shot that killed Taylor, violated procedures for use of force and failed to use his body camera during the deadly raid, the Louisville Courier Journal reported. Jaynes, who got the search warrant for Taylor’s apartment, was determined to have violated the police department’s policy on truthfulness and search warrant preparation, according to the newspaper.

Three other officers, identified by the Courier Journal as Sgt. Kyle Meany, detective Anthony James and detective Michael Campbell, were disciplined for their roles in the incident.

One other detective involved in the raid, Brett Hankison, was fired by the police department in June for “blindly” firing 10 rounds into Taylor’s apartment. He has since been charged with three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.

Original report: The Louisville Metro Police Department plans to fire two officers in the police shooting of Breonna Taylor: One who sought the “no-knock” search warrant for her apartment and a second who fired the fatal bullet.

Detective Joshua Jaynes received a pretermination letter on Tuesday from interim chief Yvette Gentry, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported. Detective Myles Cosgrove, who the FBI concluded fired the shot that killed Taylor, also received a pretermination letter, his attorney, Jarrod Beck, confirmed to the newspaper.

Taylor, 26, was a Black woman shot and killed in March by police in Louisville, Kentucky, in her apartment.

Louisville police officers Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison and Cosgrove arrived at Taylor’s home just after midnight on March 13 to execute a warrant on drug-related suspicions. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, said he did not hear police announce themselves, but he did hear banging on the door. The officers used a battering ram to break in the door, and Walker grabbed his legally owned gun, believing intruders had broken into the home. He fired one warning shot, which struck Mattingly in the leg. The officer returned more than 30 rounds of gunfire throughout Taylor’s home, hitting her multiple times. She died from her wounds. There were no drugs in the home.

Jaynes was not present at Taylor’s apartment during the shooting, but secured a warrant with a “no-knock” clause from a Jefferson circuit judge, the Courier-Journal reported.

In his affidavit, Jaynes claimed the main suspect of their drug investigation had been using Taylor’s apartment as his own since Feb. 20, WHAS reported.

Jaynes claimed he had observed Taylor’s ex-boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover, 30, running a “trap house” at a home. According to the affidavit, Glover would make frequent trips to Taylor’s apartment and was once spotting leaving with a USPS package, the television station reported.

Investigators later said the wording in Jaynes’ affidavit was “misleading.”

Jaynes’ attorney, Thomas Clay, sent news outlets a copy of the termination letter on Tuesday, WLKY reported.

“It is clear from this review there should have been better controls, supervision and scrutiny over this operation prior to the warrant being signed and executed,” Gentry wrote. “Because the operations plan was not completed properly, a very dangerous situation (w)as created for all parties involved. You were the officer who conducted the majority of the investigation. However, neither you, your direct supervisor, or his lieutenant were present or available at the scene when the search warrant was executed.”

“These are extreme violations of our policies, which endangered others,” Gentry continued. “Your actions have brought discredit upon yourself and the department. Your conduct has severely damaged the image our department has established within our community.”

Jaynes has a hearing scheduled with Gentry and her staff Thursday morning, the Courier-Journal reported.

“Detective Jaynes and I will show up for the pre-termination hearing to try to convince acting Chief Gentry that this action is unwarranted,” Clay told the newspaper. “Jaynes did nothing wrong.”

In an email sent Tuesday evening, Gentry wrote she “had to make some tough decisions,” the Courier-Journal reported.

“I believe my decisions have placed the responsibility for the actions taken in this case upon the shoulders of the people … responsible,” she said. “To this point, every officer on this department has unequally borne the burden of decisions that you all did not make and had to work under conditions you did not create.”

If Jaynes and Cosgrove are officially fired Thursday, they will be the second and third officers connected to Taylor’s death to be terminated by Louisville police.

The department had previously fired Hankison in June for “blindly” firing 10 rounds into Taylor’s apartment. He now faces three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said in September that his investigation had concluded that Cosgrove and Mattingly were justified in returning fire after Walker fired his weapon.

Lonita Baker, an attorney for Taylor’s family, said Gentry made the right move.

“I think it’s unfortunate that (former interim chief Robert) Schroeder and (former chief Steve) Conrad, both armed with the same information, did not — especially as it relates to Joshua Jaynes,” Baker told the Courier-Journal. “That is the same action they very well could have taken as well and chose not to do.”