Revelations from a member of the grand jury convened in relation to the police murder of Breonna Taylor is further exposing authorities’ efforts to cover up the cops’ crime. The juror, who can not currently reveal their identity, yesterday filed a motion requesting permission to publicly discuss the grand jury’s proceedings, and demanding that related transcripts and recordings be released.
This dramatic new development forced Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron to admit that he did not even attempt to convince the grand jury to indict the police officers who killed Breonna Taylor on murder charges — or anything, for that matter. Cameron admitted “the only charge recommended was wanton endangerment.” The wanton endangerment offense related to shots fired by an officer into a neighbor’s wall, not the shots that killed Taylor.
In most cases, a grand jury is convened because authorities know that they will almost certainly be able to secure an indictment from the process. The accused does not have any representation in the proceedings — it is just the prosecutor and the jurors in a room — and for this reason it is often used to indict political activists on false charges.
But the juror’s motion claims that in this instance Attorney General Cameron used the grand jury as “a shield to deflect accountability and responsibility” for his decision to let the cops get away with their crime. Cameron did not want to indict the killer cops, and so he simply did not give the grand jury the option to do so.
Movement refuses to give up on demand for justice
The murder of Breonna Taylor has become a nationally and internationally known case, and a focal point of the nationwide uprising against racism. Following the outrageous announcement of no murder charges last week, the movement refused to accept defeat. On a daily basis in Louisville and across the country protesters have taken to the streets in a renewed surge of struggle.
This major break in the case is raising hopes that justice can still be won. As the state-level proceedings are further exposed as an elaborate cover-up operation, the movement against racist police violence has been given new momentum.
John Winstead, a participant in the demonstrations in Louisville that followed the announcement of no murder charges, argued that “the grand juror coming forward in the Breonna Taylor case to set the record straight is a direct result of the protests happening in Louisville and around the country. If it weren’t for the mobilization of the Black community and the entire working class this case would have surely been swept under the rug and another victim of police murder would have been unjustly ignored.”
The governor of Kentucky and the mayor of Louisville — both Democrats — have mobilized the national guard and huge numbers of militarized police to repress demonstrators. But this has not intimidated the movement into silence. “The people have stood up and there is no sign they will be backing down anytime soon,” Winstead told Liberation News.