Louisville Council Votes to Ban No-Knock Warrants After Breonna Taylor’s Killing
Mayor Greg Fischer said he plans to "sign 'Breonna’s Law' as soon as it hits my desk"
Council members in Louisville, Kentucky, voted unanimously to put an end to no-knock warrants following the killing of Breonna Taylor by police.
On Thursday, the Louisville Metro Council passed "Breonna's Law" with a vote of 26-0, banning the Louisville Metro Police Department from practicing the procedure in Jefferson Country, according to WLKY.
The controversial police tactic played a role in the death of Taylor back in March after her family says police entered her home unannounced and she was shot. Police have said they knocked and identified themselves before entering the home, but witnesses have disputed that claim.
"Our action tonight sets an example for other cities to follow. We will never experience the loss Breonna’s family is dealing with every day," Metro Council President David James told the outlet. "We are with them, and at the same time, this council is saying the time has come to right a wrong, a wrong of more than 400 years."
Added James, "I am proud that we are first in justice for all."
Mayor Greg Fischer tweeted after the vote that he plans to "sign Breonna’s Law as soon as it hits my desk." Fischer added that he "wholeheartedly" agrees that, for no-knock warrants, "the risk to residents and officers with this kind of search outweigh any benefit."
"This is one of many critical steps on police reform that we’ve taken to create a more peaceful, just, compassionate and equitable community," wrote Fischer.
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In a statement responding to the vote, American Civil Liberties Union — Kentucky executive director Michael Aldridge said the decision is a "small bit of justice for Breonna’s mourning family and our angry, heartbroken city."
"It’s an important, but small step in the fight to eradicate racist police violence that has taken too many lives," said Aldridge. "Government officials on all levels must do more to rein in police power, address problems within their police departments, increase transparency, and end disparate treatment of Black people in all institutions of power."
Aldridge added, "We will continue to fight for these desperately needed changes in Breonna’s memory. We are joined with all those that have taken to the streets tonight to say her name: Breonna Taylor."
Immediately after the vote made news, crowds of people in the city gathered in celebration, cheering and clapping for the decision.
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“I feel like they took a part of me,” Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, recently told PEOPLE. “This should never have to happen to anyone else again.
“I'm so grateful for people wanting justice, and just standing up and trying to be a voice for her,” Palmer added. “She's becoming a part of history. She was amazing. She really was — not because she was my daughter, but because of the person she was. ... To know her is to love her.”
To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:
- Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.
- ColorofChange.org works to make the government more responsive to racial disparities.
- National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help black youth succeed in college and beyond.