Officer Brett Hankison, who was fired in the aftermath of the shooting, was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment

Officer Brett Hankison, who was fired in the aftermath of the shooting, was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment 

The white Louisville police officer charged in relation to Breonna Taylor‘s death could face up to five years in prison after being charged with wanton endangerment for shooting into a neighboring apartment the night the black EMT was killed. 

A Kentucky grand jury on Wednesday brought charges against one of three officers involved in the raid on Taylor’s apartment that saw her shot dead by police in front of her boyfriend on March 13.

Officer Brett Hankison, who was fired in the aftermath of the shooting, was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment, Attorney General Daniel Cameron said at a news conference.

The charges stem from Hankison’s bullets travelling into a neighboring apartment when he and two other officers opened fire.

They do not relate to the shooting death of Taylor. 

Charges of wanton endangerment are brought when a person is found to have recklessly engaged in conduct, without concern for human life, that puts a person at risk of death or serious injury.   

A Kentucky grand jury on Wednesday brought charges against one of three officers involved in the raid on Breonna Taylor's apartment that saw her shot dead by police in front of her boyfriend on March 13

A Kentucky grand jury on Wednesday brought charges against one of three officers involved in the raid on Breonna Taylor’s apartment that saw her shot dead by police in front of her boyfriend on March 13 

Myles Cosgrove

John Mattingly

Hankison’s two colleagues, Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, were not charged because the investigation found their actions were justified. Those two other officers were reassigned to administrative duties in the aftermath of the shooting

WHAT IS WANTON ENDANGERMENT? 

The charge: 

Charges of wanton endangerment are brought when a person is found to have recklessly engaged in conduct, without concern for human life, that puts a person at risk of death or serious injury. 

The punishment: 

Wanton endangerment in Kentucky is a class D felony.

It can bring a sentence of up to five years in prison.

‘A person is guilty of wanton endangerment in the first degree when, under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life, he wantonly engages in conduct which creates a substantial danger of death or serious physical injury to another person,’ state law says. 

Wanton endangerment in Kentucky is a class D felony and can bring up to five years in prison. 

Hankison, who was indicted on three counts, could potentially face up to 15 years.

Before charges were brought, Hankison was fired from the city’s police department on June 23. 

A termination letter sent to him by interim Louisville Police Chief Robert Schroeder said the white officer had violated procedures by showing ‘extreme indifference to the value of human life’ when he ‘wantonly and blindly’ shot 10 rounds of gunfire into Taylor’s apartment. 

He is the only officer to be fired and charged in relation to the Taylor case.

Hankison’s two colleagues, Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, were not charged because the investigation found their actions were justified, the attorney general said. 

Those two other officers were reassigned to administrative duties in the aftermath of the shooting. 

Bullet holes and blood smeared on the walls could be seen in one evidence photo from inside Taylor's apartment after she was shot dead

Bullet holes and blood smeared on the walls could be seen in one evidence photo from inside Taylor’s apartment after she was shot dead

Taylor's living room was left riddled with bullets after the March 13 shooting by police

Taylor’s living room was left riddled with bullets after the March 13 shooting by police

The charges stem from Hankison's bullets travelling into a neighboring apartment when he and two other officers opened fire. Pictured above are the bullet holes found in Taylor's apartment

The charges stem from Hankison’s bullets travelling into a neighboring apartment when he and two other officers opened fire. Pictured above are the bullet holes found in Taylor’s apartment 

In creating his account of Taylor’s death, the attorney general said his investigators had no video footage from the shooting.

‘Therefore, the sequence of events had to be pieced together through ballistics evidence, 911 calls, police radio traffic and interviews,’ Cameron said.

The three officers involved did not take part in the obtaining of the warrant, he said. 

They knocked on Taylor’s apartment door and announced their presence outside, which Cameron said was corroborated by a neighbor who witnessed the arrival. Getting no answer, they ‘breached the door.’

Mattingly entered first, and at the end of a corridor saw Taylor and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, with Walker pointing a gun.

Walker fired, injuring Mattingly in the thigh. Mattingly returned fire, and his colleagues began shooting soon after, Cameron said. 

Hankison fired 10 bullets.

Six bullets hit Taylor but there is no ‘conclusive’ evidence that any came from Hankinson’s gun, Cameron said. 

Bullets fired by Hankison traveled into a neighboring apartment. 

Crime scene photos from the investigation show a number of shell casings in and near the EMT's apartment after she was shot dead by police on March 13

Crime scene photos from the investigation show a number of shell casings in and near the EMT’s apartment after she was shot dead by police on March 13



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