A civil suit alleges police entered Breonna Taylor's apartment unannounced, prompting a shootout that also injured an officer

By Chris Harris
May 12, 2020 02:24 PM
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The family of an aspiring nurse working as an EMT who was fatally shot by police in her Louisville, Ky., home, has filed a lawsuit against the city's police department.

Breonna Taylor, 26, who had been on the frontlines battling the coronavirus, was killed shortly after midnight on March 13 by Louisville Metro Police Department officers executing a drug warrant, reports the Courier-Journal, the Washington Post, and WDRB.

The lawsuit, which was filed on April 27, alleges police were actually looking for a man who lived in Taylor's building but not her apartment, who had been apprehended before officers allegedly entered Taylor's apartment unannounced.

According to the suit — which accuses the officers and the department of wrongful death, excessive force and gross negligence — Taylor was shot eight times.

Taylor's boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, was in her apartment when the officers executed the warrant, according to the suit, which further alleges he shot at police as they breached the front door.

The suit alleges officers responded by firing more than 20 bullets into the apartment.

A spokeswoman for the Louisville Police tells PEOPLE via email that "we have a current internal investigation going on as it relates to this case, as well as the lawsuit," adding, "therefore it would be inappropriate for us to make any comments about it at this point."

None of the officers involved in the incident have been charged.

Instead, Walker, a 27-year-old licensed gun owner, was arrested by police on attempted murder of a police officer and first-degree assault charges.

Walker was unharmed in the incident, but one of the shots he allegedly fired struck Sgt. John Mattingly of the Louisville police, according to the reports.

Mattingly, who was shot in the leg, is expected to fully recover, the reports state.

Walker has pleaded not guilty to the two counts against him. PEOPLE was unable to reach Walker's attorney for comment.

Mom: 'No Reason Breonna Should Be Dead'

"Not one person has talked to me. Not one person has explained anything to me," Palmer said. "I want justice for her. I want them to say her name. There's no reason Breonna should be dead at all."

Palmer added: "She was an essential worker. She had to go to work. She didn't have a problem with that. … To not be able to sleep in her own bed without someone busting down her door and taking her life. … I was just like, 'Make sure you wash your hands!'"

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Attorney Ben Crump, who filed the suit on Palmer's behalf, also represents the family of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25-year-old who was shot and killed in Georgia while on a jog earlier this year.

"If you ran for Ahmaud, you need to stand for Bre," Crump told the Post.