Following the death of Ahmaud Arbery who was murdered on June 24, the mother of the slain jogger, Wanda Cooper-Jones is fighting for justice for her son and another family who lost their loved one to police brutality.
Cooper-Jones is scheduled to meet with Breonna Taylor’s mom in Louisville, a 26-year-old African-American emergency medical technician, who was fatally shot by Louisville Metro Police Department officers on March 13, 2020. Three plainclothes LMPD officers executing a no-knock search warrant entered her apartment in Louisville, Kentucky and opened fire on her and her boyfriend. She is set to meet her alongside lawmakers and local activists in the ongoing fight for Breonna. Lee Merritt, attorney for Ahmaud’s case, will accompany his mother on the trip as they call for the Louisville police officers involved in the March 13 death of Breonna to be arrested and charged.
In a video call, Cooper-Jones expressed her condolences to Breonna’s Mom saying, “I know it has to be very uncomfortable to know that your child was taken away and no one went to jail as of yet; “Don’t Give Up” on seeking justice. The Arbery family attorney, Lee Merritt, also said, even though there hasn’t been video that’s emerged in Breonna’s case there’s hope for justice because “we’ve seen cases take off because of public pressure.”
According to a report, three individuals have been indicted and charged in Ahmaud’s murder — Travis McMichael, Gregory McMichael and William “Roddie” Bryan and are each facing 1 count of malice murder, 4 counts felony murder, 2 counts aggravated assault, 1 count false imprisonment and 1 count criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.
Meanwhile, one of the officers involved in Breonna’s death, Brett Hankinson, was fired on June 19 after he was found to have violated two standards of operating procedures: obedience to the rules and regulations and use of deadly force.
Hankison, along with officers Myles Cosgrove, and Jonathan Mattingly were assigned to a botched March 13 drug raid in which they were seeking to arrest a suspect they believed lived in the apartment Taylor and boyfriend Kenneth Williams occupied. Police executed a “no-knock” warrant and burst through the door, according to a lawsuit filed by Taylor’s family. The attorney of fired Louisville Metro Police Detective Brett Hankison described his client’s firing as ‘unjustified,’ premature and ‘cowardly political act’ and alleged that Mayor Greg Fischer had bowed to public pressure. David Leightty, with Louisville-based Priddy, Cutler, Naake & Meade, has filed an appeal of Hankison’s firing and is requesting a hearing before the Louisville Police Merit Board.
On June 11, the Louisville City Council voted unanimously to be “no-knock” warrants in a new ordinance called “Breonna’s Law.” According to the Louisvile Courier-Journal, the new law also requires that officers who are serving warrants must wear body cameras, activate them at least five minutes before they execute the warrants, and not turn them off until at least five minutes after the serving has ended.
Unity for Justice, what do think?