KENTUCKY —A Jefferson County Circuit Court judge has ordered Attorney General Daniel Cameron to release grand jury recordings and he will comply on Wednesday.
What You Need To Know
- Judge orders the release of grand jury recordings
- Cameron to release recordings Wednesday
- Breonna Taylor grand juror files motion for release of transcripts, recordings
Monday, Judge Ann Bailey Smith ordered the release of the grand jury recordings during former Louisville Metro Police Department Detective Brett Hankison's arraignment. Hankison, the only officer involved in Taylor's death to face charges from the grand jury, pleaded not guilty to three counts of wanton endangerment during the arraignment.
Attorney General Daniel Cameron released the following statement in response, saying he will comply with the judge's order:
"The Grand Jury is meant to be a secretive body. It’s apparent that the public interest in this case isn’t going to allow that to happen.
"As the special prosecutor, our team has an ethical obligation not to release the recording from the Grand Jury proceedings, and we stand by our belief that such a release could compromise the ongoing federal investigation and could have unintended consequences such as poisoning the jury pool. Despite these concerns, we will comply with the Judge’s order to release the recording on Wednesday. The release of the recording will also address the legal complaint filed by an anonymous grand juror.
"We have no concerns with grand jurors sharing their thoughts on our presentation because we are confident in the case we presented. Once the public listens to the recording, they will see that over the course of two-and-a-half days, our team presented a thorough and complete case to the Grand Jury. Our prosecutors presented all of the evidence, even though the evidence supported that Sergeant Mattingly and Detective Cosgrove were justified in their use of force after having been fired upon by Kenneth Walker. For that reason, the only charge recommended was wanton endangerment."
In another development, a grand juror in the Taylor case filed a motion on Monday in Jefferson Circuit Court, requesting the release of the recordings and transcripts from the grand jury's proceedings.
"There is a compelling public interest for these proceedings to be released of a magnitude the city and the Commonwealth have never seen before that could not be confined, weaving its way across the country," says the motion. "The citizens of this Commonwealth have demonstrated their lack of faith in the process and proceedings in this matter and the justice system itself. Using the grand jurors as a shield to deflect accountability and responsibility for these decisions only sows more seeds of doubt in the process while leaving a cold chill down the spines of future grand jurors."
The motion states that the "full story and absolute truth" of how the case was handled is in the public interest.
"The full story and absolute truth of how this matter was handled from beginning to end is now an issue of great public interest and has become a large part of the discussion of public trust throughout the county," it states. "The legal system has placed the grand jurors in this matter on an island where they are left to wonder if anyone who finds them will treat them well or hold the pain and anger of the lingering questions against them."
Last week, the attorneys for Taylor's family demanded Cameron release the transcripts from the grand jury proceedings.
“That’s why we are standing here today united in solidarity declaring and demanding that he release the transcripts of the grand jury proceedings, so we can know if there was anybody giving a voice to Breonna Taylor,” civil rights lawyer and member of the Taylor family's legal team Ben Crump said.