Four Louisville Police Officers Federally Charged In Deadly Breonna Taylor Raid

Megan Varner/Getty Images

Sarah Wilder Social Issues Reporter
Font Size:

Four current and former Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officers were hit with federal charges Thursday in relation to the death of Breonna Taylor.

The charges stem from a deadly raid on Taylor’s home in March of 2020, when two LMPD officers fatally shot Taylor. During the confrontation, Taylor’s boyfriend shot one officer in the leg. Police say they got a warrant to enter Taylor’s home without warning because they believed her boyfriend was using her home to conduct illegal drug trades.

“Earlier today I spoke with the family of Breonna Taylor. This morning, they were informed that the Justice Department is charging four current and former Louisville metro police department officers for federal crimes related to Miss Taylor’s death,” Attorney General Merrick Garland announced. (RELATED: Officer Who Shot Breonna Taylor, Was Shot By Her Boyfriend Writing Book About ‘The Fight For Truth’)

“Those alleged crimes include civil rights offenses, unlawful conspiracies, unconstitutional use of force, and obstruction offenses. The four defendants were charged through two separate indictments, and one information.”

The Justice Department alleges that three of the LMPD police officers falsified the affidavit they used to obtain a search warrant into Taylor’s home, violating federal law, Garland announced. Former LMPD Detective Joshua Jaynes, current Sergeant Kyle Meany, and Detective Kelly Goodlett were charged for their roles in allegedly falsifying the affidavit and the search warrant.

Detective Brett Hankison was indicted with two civil rights charges for using unconstitutionally excessive force, when he fired his weapon through a covered window and glass door in Taylor’s apartment.

“Breonna Taylor should be alive today,” Garland said.

“These indictments reflect the Justice Department’s commitment to preserving the integrity of the criminal justice system and to protecting the constitutional rights of every American,” Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke said.

Jaynes and Cosgrove were fired by the LMPD in January 2021. In March 2022, former LMPD officer Brett Hankison was charged with wanton endangerment. Hankison was later found not guilty for these charges.

Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul introduced the Justice for Breonna Taylor Act in June 2020. The bill prohibited no-knock warrants.