Breonna Taylor's family settles wrongful death lawsuit with $12 million payout

15 September 2020, 19:49 | Updated: 15 September 2020, 19:53

Breonna Taylor's family have settled a wrongful lawsuit over her death
Breonna Taylor's family have settled a wrongful lawsuit over her death. Picture: Family handout

The family of Breonna Taylor will be paid $12 million (£9.1 million) by the city of Louisville to settle a wrongful death lawsuit, it has been announced.

Breonna, a 26-year-old EMT, was shot and killed in her own home after being shot by white police officers who were using a "no-knock" warrant.

At the time of writing, no one has been arrested or charged in connection with her death.

Ms Taylor's fatal shooting by police serving a narcotics warrant at her home sparked months of protests in Louisville and calls nationwide for the officers to be charged.

State attorney general Daniel Cameron is investigating police actions in the March 13 shooting.

The lawsuit, filed in April by her mother, Tamika Palmer, alleged the police used flawed information when they obtained a "no-knock" warrant to enter the black woman's apartment.

Ms Taylor was shot several times and police found no drugs at her home.

Ms Taylor was shot in her own home in Louiseville, Kentucky
Ms Taylor was shot in her own home in Louiseville, Kentucky. Picture: PA

The suit accused three Louisville police officers of blindly firing into Ms Taylor's apartment, striking her several times.

Her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, was in the apartment with her and was legally armed.

Believing the officers to be intruders, as he didn't hear them announce themselves, Mr Walker fired a single shot that struck an officer in the leg.

The settlement will include reforms on the handling of warrants by police.

The city has already taken some reform measures, including passing a law named for Taylor that bans the use of no-knock warrants. Police typically use them in drug cases over concern that evidence could be destroyed if they announce their arrival.

Mayor Greg Fischer fired former police chief Steve Conrad in June and last week named Yvette Gentry, a former deputy chief, as the new interim police chief. Ms Gentry would be the first black woman to lead the force of about 1,200 sworn officers.

The largest settlement previously paid in a misconduct case was $8.5 million in 2012, to a man who spent nine years in prison for a crime he did not commit, according to news reports.