Pritzker: 'Miscarriage of justice,’ upcoming protests in Breonna Taylor death
They urged peaceful protests.
CHICAGO (CBS) -- “A miscarriage of justice.”
That’s how Illinois Governor JB Pritzker described the decision to indict an officer with “wanton endangerment” in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor. He was joined by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in addressing Wednesday’s indictment and future protests that may occur.
They urged peaceful protests. At 7:00 Wednesday night, Lightfoot said there will citywide moment of silence for the memory of Taylor. Lightfoot added “I encourage you to say her name.”
“I want to say to every Black woman, every Black mother, sister to their brothers to their husbands, and their friends that I will not rest until the state of Illinois and this country, treat you with the respect and equality,” Pritzker said.
More than six months after emergency medical worker Breonna Taylor was shot dead by police in her Louisville home, a grand jury has indicted one officer in relation to shooting into her neighbor’s apartment — but no officers were indicted for their role in Taylor’s death.
Former officer Brett Hankison was indicted on three counts of wanton endangerment and two other officers who opened fire were not indicted.
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced the results of the grand jury proceedings in a press conference at the Kentucky History Center in Frankfort. He called Taylor’s death a tragedy but said it was his job to put emotions aside and determine whether criminal statutes were violated.
“There is no doubt this is a gut-wrenching and emotional case, and the pain many people are feeling is understandable,” Cameron said. “I deeply care about the value and sanctity of human life. It deserves protection. And in this case, a human life was lost. We cannot forget that.”
Mayor Lightfoot said Taylor’s murder has been part of a movement of protests where Black men and women were killed at the hands of police.
“This ruling is absolutely heartbreaking. It leaves more questions than it answers. My fear is that it reinforces the deeply held notion that there are two sides of justice. As a lawyer, former federal prosecutor and a defense attorney, I know that our flawed system, our criminal justice often feels unfair and can be brutal, particularly to people of color,” Lightfoot said.
Earlier Wednesday, Gov. Pritzker put the Illinois National Guard on notice in the event of demonstrations surrounding the fact that no charges were made in Taylor’s death.
Taylor’s case has taken the national spotlight in the fight against institutionalized racism, after the 26-year-old unarmed Black woman was shot and killed by police during a botched raid in March. The warrant used to search her home was connected to a suspect who did not live there, and no drugs were found inside. The use of no-knock warrants has since been banned by Louisville’s Metro Council. According to the attorney general, the warrant was not served as a “no knock” warrant.
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