Officer shot in Breonna Taylor raid is retiring: ‘Time has come’ to leave, he says
Louisville Metro Police Department
(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) — Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, the Louisville officer shot in the leg during the police raid that killed Breonna Taylor, is set to retire on June 1, according to the Louisville Metro Police Department.
“My plan was not to move on from this calling, but in the best interest of my family, the time has come,” Mattingly said in a statement Wednesday through his representative.
“Serving as a police officer for the past 21 years has been one of the greatest honors and privileges of my life. Having this opportunity in the city I grew up in and love has made that choice an even greater honor,” Mattingly said. “I’ve never taken lightly the responsibility that comes along with serving the great citizens of Louisville. It’s my hope and prayer, that moving forward, our city can heal and unite.”
Mattingly’s statement comes days after Attorney General Merrick Garland announced an investigation into the Louisville Metro Police Department to see if it “engages in a pattern or practice of using unreasonable force.”
The investigation will include determining “whether LMPD engages in unconstitutional stops searches and seizures, as well as whether the department unlawfully executes search warrants on private homes,” Garland said Monday.
Mattingly said in his statement, “The current DOJ investigation into the department played no role in this decision. I have great faith in the men and women of LMPD, who selflessly give of themselves, to continue to serve this community in a professional and unbiased manner.”
On Wednesday night the Justice Department held its first community meeting via Zoom, allowing the public to ask prosecutors questions, ABC Louisville affiliate WHAS reported.
“We’ve already been hearing from law enforcement officers that there’s some things they would like us to take a closer look at,” said Justice Department attorney Charles Hart, according to WHAS. “Our goal is to get insights that will help us get to the truth.”
The national spotlight on Louisville began on March 13, 2020, when Taylor was shot and killed by police at her home.
Taylor was asleep with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, when officers arrived to execute a “no-knock” search warrant as part of an investigation into a suspected drug operation, allegedly linked to Taylor’s ex-boyfriend.
Walker, who claims he thought the officers were intruders, fired one gunshot, striking Mattingly in the leg.
In response, officers — including Mattingly — opened fire, and Taylor was shot multiple times.
Mattingly said he and the other officers had knocked on Taylor’s door multiple times and repeatedly yelled, “Police, search warrant!” before ramming the door open. But Walker and 11 other witnesses at Taylor’s apartment complex claimed they didn’t hear police announce themselves.
Mattingly told ABC News last year, “We expected that Breonna was going to be there by herself. That’s why we gave her so much time. And in my opinion that was a mistake.”
“What would I have done differently … number one, we would have either served the no-knock warrant or we would have done the normal thing we do, which is five to 10 seconds. To not give people time to formulate a plan, not give people time to get their senses so they have an idea of what they’re doing,” Mattingly said. “Because if that had happened … Breonna Taylor would be alive, 100 percent.”
No drugs were found in Taylor’s home. Walker initially was charged with attempted murder of a police officer, but the charges were dropped.
One officer involved in the shooting, Brett Hankison, was fired, and the others were placed on administrative duty.
But at first no one was charged, igniting protests across the U.S.
Daniel Cameron, Kentucky’s attorney general, said the officers were justified in their use of deadly force because Walker fired the first shot.
In September, Cameron convened a grand jury to investigate possible charges against the officers. A grand jury indicted Hankison on three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment of Taylor’s neighbors, for firing into the apartment directly behind Taylor’s, where three people were inside. Hankison pleaded not guilty.
In January, two other officers involved, Myles Cosgrove and Detective Joshua Jaynes, were fired from the department. Cosgrove fired the shot that killed Taylor per a ballistics analysis. Jaynes wasn’t at the shooting but prepared the search warrant.
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