Two months ago, Breonna Taylor, an EMT in Louisville, thought her home was a safe haven. The thought that the people who would break that covenant are police probably was not top of mind. Oh, by the way, this hard working EMT is dead. She was also African-American.
The following paragraphs from an updated article tell the tragic story.
Breonna Taylor: Family files lawsuit after Louisville police shoot EMT 8 times in ‘botched’ drug raid
By: Crystal Bonvillian, Cox Media Group (updated May 13, 2020)
“Breonna Taylor was pulling long hours at two of Louisville’s hospitals as an emergency room technician and certified EMT working on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic as the disease began spreading throughout the U.S.
Taylor was home asleep with her boyfriend in the early morning hours of March 13 when police officers executing a drug warrant busted down their door and opened fire, killing her. The 26-year-old was shot at least eight times.
No drugs were found in the couple’s home. Neither Taylor nor her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, had a history of drug arrests, according to a lawsuit filed by her family.”
This wrongful invasion and killing happened two months ago. It is only now making national news. Why? She waa shot eight times in her own bed. Why?
We just learned about Ahmaud Arbery’s vigilante murder a few weeks ago. Why is it that murders of African-Americans are happening and failing to garner attention?
We cannot tolerate vigilantism in our country. And, we must ask our police to get it right before they charge into someone’s house in the middle of the night.
There seem to be open questions about what happened. The warrant said the police could enter without knocking. The police said they knocked first before entering. Yet, there were no body cameras in use to tell us what happened. Taylor’s boyfriend has been arrested for attempted homicide as he allegedly fired at an officer, but has pleaded innocent due to self-defense.
I know police have a dangerous job. Yet, they must do everything in their power to get it right. One of my recurring concerns is why so many shots? Too many times I read eight, eleven, fifteen and even 41 shots, like the infamous Springsteen song, when a person of color is involved. And, why must the warrant be served in a manner which is conducive to confrontation? Awakened people are likely scared out of their wits. I know I would be.
We owe it to Taylor’s parents to understand why their daughter is dead? Why did a devoted EMT, bone tired from helping people, have to die? Why did she have to be shot eight times? Why did police feel a forced entry in the middle of the night was the best route? And, one final question, would the raid have been in the middle of the night if the suspects were white or, maybe more affluent and white?
I do know this. If this were your or my child, we would feel every bit as upset at what happened as Taylor’s parents. We would want some damn answers.