It has been six months since Breonna Taylor was shot and killed in her home by plainclothes Louisville, Kentucky, police officers Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, and Myles Cosgrove. In the more than 100 days since that travesty, protesters have taken to streets across the country demanding charges be filed against all of the officers involved. Now that a decision is expected to be announced imminently by Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron following a months-long investigation into Taylor’s death, “elected officials, public safety leaders, many residents and business owners” can’t help but wonder what will happen to Louisville once the announcement goes public, USA Today reports.
“No matter what the announcement is, it’s not going to be satisfactory to everybody,” Sam Aguiar, a Louisville attorney representing Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, told USA Today.
AG Cameron has been in possession of the “Louisville Metro Police’s substantially complete Public Integrity Unit investigation” into Taylor’s case since May 20, but he has remained mostly quiet about his office’s findings since that time, according to USA Today.
Palmer appealed directly to Cameron about her daughter’s case in a moving Instagram post on Friday, September 11:
@danieljaycameron it’s crunch time and we’re putting our faith and trust in you. Your mother put everything she had into raising you. If you ask her, she will say without hesitation that she would stop at nothing to protect you. She would be willing to give her life to save yours. If you were gunned down in your own home, wouldn’t she demand the killers be brought to justice? Would she stand up and demand justice if it was being delayed? Would she want the support of the community and others to help her when her cry for justice for her child’s death was being ignored? If she had the power to make sure this type of injustice would never happen without accountability and consequences, would she make sure of it? Will you make sure of it? Do you have the power and courage to call my child yours, the power to see that my cry and my community’s cry is heard, and the power as part of a village who raises our children to do right by one of our daughters?!
A post shared by Tamika L. Palmer (@tamikalpalmer) on Sep 10, 2020 at 1:31pm PDT
Sadiqa Reynolds, President and CEO of Louisville Urban League, told local news outlet WHAS-11 that she is worried about the community’s reaction to the decision in Taylor’s case. “It’s unavoidable. I am not preparing for a world where there are no charges because I believe there will be charges,” she said. “To tell you that I’m not concerned that would be dishonest. I am concerned and whatever this city does, whatever the people do, I will be there.”
“It’s not just going to be this peace without healing, without truth. We have to have truth. We have to talk about what has occurred,” Reynolds added.
Felicia Garr, organizer of the Great Women’s March, told WHAS she will keep marching if Cameron doesn’t bring significant charges against all of the officers involved in Taylor’s death. “I will not destroy property,” she said. “But I will participate in every peaceful protest possible if we do not get the appropriate results for the case.”
Both Garr and Reynolds expect Cameron’s announcement to be a turning point for activists and protesters, according to WHAS. “You know you need to be prepared for the worst, you hope certainly for the best and I think that what I hope the protesters know, no matter what happens, we owe it to ourselves, and our future selves to take the protests to the polls,” Reynolds said. “We don’t want revenge, we want justice. Those two things are very different.”
“My biggest fear right now is that there’s not going to be a level of accountability that there should be,” Aguiar told USA Today, “Everything, everything that we see in this case is that it implicates every officer on the scene—and then some.”
Metro Council President David James (D-6th) told USA Today that he expects the people of Louisville to have a “good, robust dialogue” following Cameron’s decision. “That doesn’t eliminate the emotional factor,” he added, “but overall, I have to have faith in the judicial system, in the justice system, and hope the attorney general does the right thing.”