As protests erupted nationwide regarding the shooting death of Breonna Taylor, documents show that members of the Louisville Metro Police Department were stockpiling negative information regarding Breonna Taylor's boyfriend, Kenneth Walker.
Walker has become a central figure in Breonna Taylor's death. When officers entered Taylor's apartment on March 13, Walker fired off a warning shot from his legal firearm to scare off the people he believed were home invaders. After the shot was fired, officer Jonathan Mattingly discovered that he had been shot in the thigh. In retaliation, the three officers in Taylor's apartment fired off multiple shots and killed Taylor.
In the months following the shooting, protests erupted in support of Taylor, a ballistics report showed that no conclusive that Walker's bullet hit Mattingly and conflicting reports have emerged as to whether or not the trio announced themselves before entering. As attention regarding the case mounted, members of the Louisville Metro Police Department utilized public resources to compile negative information regarding Walker.
Recently released files from internal investigation of the Louisville Metro Police Department show that law enforcement found an image of Taylor holding Walker's legal firearm. Investigators also spent time question Walker about his use of marijuana. Most importantly, law enforcement spent time searching through Walker's text messages in an effort to find evidence that he was selling narcotics and possibly engaging in robberies. One document states that his alleged illegal activity "may have contributed to Walker's actions on March 13, 2020."
Walker's attorney, Steven Romines, has questioned the relevance of the information as it pertains to Breonna Taylor's death. Romines has also raised the possibility that authorities had a conflict of interest when executing the search warrant.
"It's just a cover-up," Romines said.
"And it reflects the fact that over two months into the investigation of Breonna Taylor's death, LMPD [was] more interested in including unsupported allegations to smear Kenny Walker than it [was] in actually finding the truth."
Immediately after the March 13 shooting, Walker was detained before he was ultimately released from custody. He has since filed a civil suit against the city's police department.
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