Breonna Taylor Decision Sparks New Wave of National Protests

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Adam Bear, Staff Writer

On September 23, Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced that one of the three officers involved in Breonna Taylor’s death, Brett Harkinson, would be charged with wanton endangerment, or the engagement in conduct which creates a substantial danger of death or serious physical injury to another person with an indifference to human life. The other two officers involved were not indicted. 

The announcement comes after the nationwide resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement, for which Taylor’s death has become a motivating force. The demand for justice, especially for Taylor, was a common theme of the demonstrations. The chant  “Breonna Taylor: say her name,” is heard at many protests.

The decision has further galvanized protestors, who have taken to the streets demanding not only justice for Ms. Taylor but also an end to police brutality and justice for all of its victims. Since September 23, major demonstrations have occurred in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington, and Philadelphia. Demonstrations turned violent in Louisville on September 23, when two police officers were shot. Both officers are in stable condition with no life-threatening injuries, police said.

Although the decision on Ms. Taylor’s killing has not been deemed adequate by the Black Lives Matter movement, their protests have affected some change. On June 11, the Louisville Metro Council unanimously passed what has been dubbed “Breonna’s Law”, banning the use of no-knock warrants. In addition, Taylor’s family has been provided with $12 million from the city of Louisville through a civil settlement, along with a promise of police reform. It is yet to be seen whether that promise will be kept.