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Wednesday, 23 September 2020

Cop who was shot by Breonna Taylor's boyfriend emails colleagues to say 'the good guys are demonized, and the criminals are canonized' as Louisville braces for AG's decision on whether to charge him and other officers over her death

 An officer who was shot by Breonna Taylor's boyfriend when he entered her apartment in March, told his more than 1,000 colleagues in an email on Tuesday that 'the good guys are demonized, and the criminals are canonized' as Louisville braces for the attorney general's decision on whether to charge him and two other officers in connection to her death. 

Sgt Jonathan Mattingly, who was one of three cops involved in the shooting, voiced his support for the officers and defended his actions the night Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT, was killed. 

Kentucky Attorney General, Daniel Cameron, said he will soon decide whether the charges will be brought against Mattingly and two other officers involved in the shooting.  

In the email, obtained by the Courier-Journal, Mattingly said that Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and top police officials had 'failed all of us in epic proportions'.

'Regardless of the outcome today or Wednesday, I know we did the legal, moral and ethical thing that night. It’s sad how the good guys are demonized, and the criminals are canonized.

'I wish I were there with you leading the charge. I’ll be praying for your safety. Remember you are just a pawn in the Mayors political game. I’m proof they do not care about you or your family, and you are replaceable.'

Referring to protesters, Mattingly, who was shot in the leg by Taylor's boyfriend the night police entered her apartment, explained to the officers that they 'DO NOT DESERVE to be in this position'.

'The position that allows thugs to get in your face and yell, curse and degrade you. Throw bricks bottles and urine on you and expect you to do nothing,' he added. 

Mattingly, who was one of three officers involved in the shooting, sent the email to the officers on Tuesday voicing his support for them and defending his actions the night Taylor (pictured), a 26-year-old EMT, was killed

Mattingly, who was one of three officers involved in the shooting, sent the email to the officers on Tuesday voicing his support for them and defending his actions the night Taylor (pictured), a 26-year-old EMT, was killed

Referring to protesters, Mattingly, who was shot in the leg by Taylor's boyfriend (pictured with Taylor) the night police entered her apartment, explained to the officers that they 'DO NOT DESERVE to be in this position'

Referring to protesters, Mattingly, who was shot in the leg by Taylor's boyfriend (pictured with Taylor) the night police entered her apartment, explained to the officers that they 'DO NOT DESERVE to be in this position'

'The position that allows thugs to get in your face and yell, curse and degrade you. Throw bricks bottles and urine on you and expect you to do nothing,' Mattingly said about protesters (pictured Monday night) who have taken to the streets to demand justice for Taylor

'The position that allows thugs to get in your face and yell, curse and degrade you. Throw bricks bottles and urine on you and expect you to do nothing,' Mattingly said about protesters (pictured Monday night) who have taken to the streets to demand justice for Taylor 

Mattingly claimed that the officers' 'civil rights mean nothing' to city officials, but 'the criminal has total autonomy'.

Taylor's boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, told police he fired one round after Taylor's door was broken down and Mattingly entered. Walker said he did not know police were at the door.

Mattingly's attorney, Kent Wicker, said that Mattingly's email was 'expressing his support for (fellow officers) and their work during these difficult times'.

The email came the same day that Louisville officials prepared for more protests and possible unrest ahead of the attorney general's announcement.


With timing of the announcement still uncertain, Fischer declared a state of emergency due to the potential for civil unrest, hours after police said they would restrict access in the city's downtown area. 

The mayor and police said they were trying to plan ahead of time to protect both demonstrators and the people who live and work there.

But some involved in protests seeking justice for Taylor questioned why the police were going to such 'overkill' lengths when the city has been the site of peaceful protests for months.

'This is certainly an over-response to the local protests that have been happening in our community,' said Sadiqa Reynolds, who heads the nonprofit Louisville Urban League and lives downtown. Protesters have been demonstrating in and around the city for nearly 120 days, she said.

The email came the same day that Louisville officials prepared for more protests and possible unrest ahead of the attorney general's announcement. Many of the streets in downtown Louisville are blocked off (above)

The email came the same day that Louisville officials prepared for more protests and possible unrest ahead of the attorney general's announcement. Many of the streets in downtown Louisville are blocked off (above) 

Police officers control access to downtown Louisville, Kentucky on Tuesday in anticipation of the results of a grand jury inquiry into Taylor's death

Police officers control access to downtown Louisville, Kentucky on Tuesday in anticipation of the results of a grand jury inquiry into Taylor's death

Louisville is sealed off as city braces for Breonna Taylor decision
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When Reynolds and hundreds of others staged a peaceful protest on Kentucky Derby day, police blocked off streets surrounding Churchill Downs and stationed dozens of officers at the track, which was without fans inside.

'This city keeps meeting the desire for justice with this preparation for war,' she said.

In a news release Tuesday, the Louisville Metro Police Department said it was placing barricades around Jefferson Square Park, where protests over Taylor's death have been held, and the perimeter of the downtown area; allowing only pedestrians in the blocks immediately surrounding the park; restricting vehicle traffic in other areas of downtown and limiting access to parking garages.

The department apologized in a statement Tuesday for the inconveniences to workers and downtown residents during the preparations.

'However, public safety is our number one priority, and it would be irresponsible if we did not take preemptive action to preserve it,' the statement said.

'Our goal is ensuring space and opportunity for potential protesters to gather and express their First Amendment rights after the announcement,' Fischer said. 

'At the same time, we are preparing for any eventuality to keep everyone safe.'

Attorney General Daniel Cameron (pictured) has declined to set a deadline for his decision. Earlier this month, he remarked that 'an investigation, if done properly, cannot follow a certain timeline'

Attorney General Daniel Cameron (pictured) has declined to set a deadline for his decision. Earlier this month, he remarked that 'an investigation, if done properly, cannot follow a certain timeline'

Brett Hankison
Myles Cosgrove

The other officers who could face charges are Brett Hankison (left) and Myles Cosgrove (right). Hankison was fired while Mattingly and Cosgrove remain on the force on administrative assignment 

Attorney General Cameron has declined to set a deadline for his decision. Earlier this month, he remarked that 'an investigation, if done properly, cannot follow a certain timeline'.

Interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder said officials from Cameron's office have promised to try to give authorities a heads-up.

Taylor, a Black emergency medical worker, was shot multiple times on March 13 by officers who entered her home using a no-knock warrant during a narcotics investigation. 

The warrant used 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.

Large protests over Taylor's death that at times became violent erupted in late May in the city but most demonstrations since then have been peaceful. 

Celebrities, athletes, activists and Taylor's family have for months pushed Cameron to criminally charge the officers involved in the raid.

Last week, the city of Louisville settled a lawsuit from Taylor's family for $12million and pledged several police reforms as part of the agreement.

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