LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Breonna Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, was somber as the Department of Justice released a report detailing how Louisville Metro Police “engage in a pattern or practice of conduct that deprives people of their rights under the Constitution and federal law.”
Palmer said the DOJ has finally said what she’s known for three years: the raid on her daughter’s home and her death at the hands of police should have never happened.
“It goes to say, I always knew she would be great, that she would do good things. It shouldn’t have took this,” Taylor’s mother said.
Attorney General Merrick Garland released his department’s scathing report from Louisville days before the third anniversary of Breonna Taylor’s death at the hands of LMPD officers.
Louisville attorneys Sam Aguiar and Lonita Baker, along with Tamika Palmer, held a news conference Wednesday to share their reactions to the report, which offered a long list of abuses committed by LMPD.
Baker said the only “positive” to come from the death of Breonna Taylor is it hopefully prevents other people from suffering the same fate.
“This isn’t just an LMPD problem, it’s a city problem. It’s prosecutors who have allowed police officers to present flimsy cases and push for plea bargains. It’s prosecutors who have refused to hold officers who engage in criminal behavior accountable,” Baker said.
Aguiar said LMPD needs to immediately expand its capacity to investigate citizen complaints of officers and have officers held accountable when it’s determined wrongdoing has occurred.
“If you don’t have a system of being able to document these complaints, make them part of an individual’s file. Investigate them, hold them accountable,” Aguiar said.
“It’s easy to say it until we actually start using those policies and procedures… it’ll just keep repeating itself,” Palmer added, and that’s exactly what she is trying to prevent.