Two Louisville Officers Involved In Breonna Taylor’s Fatal Shooting Fired

Elijah C. Watson Elijah Watson serves as Okayplayer's News & Culture Editor. When…
Ex-Detective Brett Hankison Indicted On Criminal Charges In Breonna Taylor Shooting
Photo by JEFF DEAN/AFP via Getty Images

Louisville Detectives Myles Cosgrove and Joshua Jaynes reportedly violated department policies which led to their terminations earlier this week.

Two Louisville officers involved in Breonna Taylor‘s fatal shooting following a botched raid in her apartment were fired.

A spokesperson for the Louisville Metro Police Department confirmed the news on Wednesday. According to NPR, the officer’s termination letters signed by interim Police Chief Yvette Gentry said Detective Joshua Jaynes, who secured the warrant for the raid on Taylor’s home, and Detective Myles Cosgrove, who investigators say fired the shot that took her life were terminated on Tuesday. Both Jaynes and Cosgrove have 10 days to appeal the decision.

In the termination letters, the interim LMPD chief said the officers violated department policy. Per the documents, Jaynes did not follow department protocols “with the preparation of the search warrant and truthfulness.”

The letter read, “The evidence in this case revealed a sustained untruthfulness violation based on information included in an affidavit completed by you and submitted to a judge.” It also stated, “It is my decision to terminate your employment based on that evidence.”

Cosgrove violated department procedures including “the use of deadly force” and “failing to operate his officer-worn body camera.” LMPD also expressed he fired 16 shots in Taylor’s apartment, two shots struck her. His letter states, “The shots you fired went in three different directions, indicating you did not verify a threat or have target acquisition.” It also reads, “the evidence shows that you fired wildly at unidentified subjects or targets located within the apartment.”

Cosgrove and Jaynes have been on paid leave since the shooting. Per NPR, in late December they’d received notification from Gentry that LMPD would be terminating them.

On the same day of the official announcement of the officers’ terminations, Louisville announced the hiring of Erika Shields as LMPD’s new police chief. Shields previously served as the head of Atlanta’s Police Department, she stepped down following the police shooting death of Rayshard Brooks in June.

Back in September, one of the officers involved in the shooting that led to the death of Breonna Taylor was indicted by a grand jury.

In a report from the Louisville Courier Journal, former detective Brett Hankison was indicted on three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment. Kentucky has two types of wanton endangerment: first-degree and second-degree. First-degree wanton endangerment is a Class D felony, punishable with fines of up to $10,000 and up to five years in prison. Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly who was also involved in the violent incident was not indicted.

The Courier Journal report also noted that the occupants of the apartment where Taylor was fatally shot were identified by their initials and that Taylor’s initials weren’t included, meaning “it appears the grand jury did not find that Hankison wantonly fired into Taylor’s apartment the night she died.” In other words, Hankison has been charged for his actions the night of the shooting, but not actually charged for shooting at — and killing — Taylor.

The announcement comes six months after Taylor was killed in a raid at her apartment in March. Ahead of the decision, Police in Louisville, Kentucky declared a “state of emergency.” Louisville settled a wrongful death suit filed by Taylor’s family for $12 million in early September. The settlement did not require the city to admit any wrongdoing, per NBC. Back in April, her mother, Tamika Palmer sued the three officers involved in the violent raid.

This article was previously published on September 23, it was updated on January 7.

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