LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville Metro Police Chief Erika Shields is firing Kyle Meany after a pre-termination meeting she had with him Friday. Meany, one of the four Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officers charged by the U.S. Department of Justice in a probe of Breonna Taylor’s death.
Shields announced the termination in a statement provided to Spectrum News, citing the federal charges Meany faces as grounds for termination.
“I fully respect the judicial process and realize Sgt. Meany has yet to be heard before a jury of his peers. That being said, he is facing multiple federal charges after a lengthy investigation by the DOJ,” she said. Though Shields acknowledged that the judicial process has yet to play out, she defended her decision, saying, “As an employer, the character of our organization is paramount and it is not reasonable to expect continued employment under such conditions.”
“I made the decision to terminate Sgt. Kyle Meany after careful consideration and not with ease,” she said in her statement.
Shields began the process of terminating both Meany and Kelly Goodlett, another officer charged in the probe, immediately after Attorney General Merrick Garland announced federal charges on Aug. 4.
Meany, 35, along with former officers Brett Hankison and Joshua Jaynes, are facing federal indictments as the FBI investigates the circumstances surrounding Breonna Taylor’s death after the execution of a no-knock warrant by LMPD.
Goodlett resigned from LMPD on Aug. 5, rather than face termination. She was not indicted but charged on information, and is expected to plead guilty to falsifying a search warrant and filing a false report to cover it up.
Federal prosecutors allege Meany, Jaynes and Goodlett conspired to cover up lies on the search warrant that was issued to justify the deadly no-knock raid on March 13, 2020.
Hankison, who was dismissed from the department in 2020, was one of the officers at Taylor’s door and one of three who fired shots that night. He was acquitted by a jury of state charges of wanton endangerment earlier this year in Louisville.
The first indictment — charging Jaynes and Meany in connection with the allegedly false warrant — contains four counts. The second indictment — against Hankison — includes two civil rights charges alleging that Hankison willfully used unconstitutionally excessive force, while acting in his official capacity as an officer, when he fired his service weapon into Taylor’s apartment through a covered window and covered glass door.
The DOJ is conducting two separate investigations — a Civil Rights investigation in Breonna Taylor’s death and a broader ‘pattern or practice’ investigation into LMPD as a whole.