Breonna Taylor’s family: Firing of officers ‘not justice’

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Family of Breonna Taylor are criticizing what they’re calling minimal action from the city of Louisville. 

The Louisville Metro Police Department announced Wednesday it would fire two additional officers tied to Taylor’s death. 

“The firing of the officers, I just think that it comes with procedure and protocol,” Taylor’s cousin Tawanna Gordon, who lives in West Michigan, said.

Taylor, 26, a Grand Rapids native, was shot and killed in a botched raid in her Louisville apartment in March.

After Taylor’s story got national attention and sparked fierce protests across the nation, the city of Louisville announced it would fire one of three officers tied to her death. The Taylor family was later awarded a settlement of $12 million in a civil suit related to the incident. Shortly after that, Kentucky’s attorney general announced charges of wanton endangerment against the one officer previously fired. There were no charges directly related to Taylor’s death. 

On Wednesday, LMPD officially terminated two more officers, Myles Cosgrove and Joshua Jaynes, but the Taylor family says it’s still not enough. Her family had previously called for arrests, charges and policy changes. 

“It’s just not justice to tell someone that they’ll lose their job. Breonna didn’t just lose her job. She lost her life and that you can’t get back,” Gordon said.

While the officers will be able to move on to new careers, Taylor’s family says they’re still mourning a loss and black and brown people still live in fear of facing violence at the hands of police.

Gordon said if the stories of people like Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and countless others isn’t enough to show you Black and brown people live in a different America, police reaction as supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol compared to summer Black Lives Matter protests should give people a crystal clear picture. 

“I’m not surprised that the handling them versus the way they handled us is the way that it is. They’ve painted that picture for centuries since Christopher Columbus,” Gordon said.

Taylor’s family says with the outcome of the Georgia runoff elections and President-elect Joe Biden set to take office in a few weeks, they’re hoping to see significant police reform across the country. 

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