The NAACP Legal Defense Fund (NAACP LDF) released an in-depth report Tuesday on how Attorney General Daniel Cameron mishandled the Breonna Taylor investigation.
The report, titled Justice Denied: An Overview Of The Grand Jury Proceedings In The Breonna Taylor Case, details the investigation after Taylor’s death and how Cameron handled the grand jury proceedings.
“Our review reveals that the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office presented a biased view of the case that favored law enforcement,” the report states. “Contrary to AG Cameron’s statements during the September 23, 2020, press conference, he did not present charges of homicide or explain the justification of self-defense.
“Instead of providing the grand jury with all relevant evidence, the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office made its own determination as to how the case should be resolved and tailored its presentation to guarantee that outcome.”
Cameron received significant backlash for only charging one officer in the incident, but also because one of the jurors, who remained anonymous noted “[t]he grand jury was not presented any charges other than the three wanton endangerment charges against Detective Hankison.”
The report adds Cameron’s presentation of evidence to the grand jurors was done in order to protect the four officers.
The report added prosecutors relied on one witness who supported the officers’ version of events, despite contrary statements by multiple witnesses. Additionally, prosecutors failed to present body camera video or audio evidence and did not give a reasonable explanation.
The NAACP LDF also added prosecutors played the questioning of Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker to the grand jury. Prosecutors failed to show evidence of racial bias against Walker and misled the grand jury regarding the validity of the search warrant. Prosecutors also failed to present evidence showing LMPD officers violated department protocol.
The report includes all three days of the grand jury testimony recording that was released by Cameron’s office after Jefferson Circuit Judge Ann Bailey Smith ordered him to.
The LDF requested Cameron appoint a special prosecutor to resubmit to a new grand jury. Present all relevant evidence and applicable charges and allow the grand jury to pursue additional charges where it deems appropriate.
The group also wants Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear to establish a process for appointing a special prosecutor in cases where a law enforcement officer may have been involved in criminal wrongdoing.