Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron has been given an extension, until Friday, Sept. 2, to release the grand jury recordings from the Breonna Taylor case. The “controversial” decision, made on Sept. 23 by the grand jury, was to only indict one officer on charges that weren’t directly related to Taylor being killed.
Cameron originally filed a motion on Sept. 29 to request a week’s extension to submit the recordings because he thought it necessary to protect the personal information of private citizens that were mentioned. This information included “addresses, Social Security numbers and phone numbers” of the witnesses, according to Courier Journal.
Cameron claimed that the release of the recordings without redacting such important information may lead to an invasion of privacy for the witnesses and be a failure to ensure their protection. He said in a tweet that people who claim he tried to delay the release are being “misleading” and that he is “complying with the Judge’s order.”
One of the grand jurors, who remains anonymous, raised the concern that Cameron “may have misrepresented to the public the case presented to the panel,” CNN said. The lawyer for the juror said the juror wanted to “make sure the truth gets out,” CNN reported.
Cameron remarked, “I deeply care about the value and sanctity of human life. It deserves protection, and in this case a human life was lost. We cannot forget that.” He claimed there’s nothing he can do to relieve Taylor’s family of their grief, but he can provide them with the “facts” of the case and can reassure people that he did all he could.
This decision to allow the release of the recordings comes as Taylor’s family, Taylor’s boyfriend, and Taylor’s family attorney Ben Crump, have all demanded that the jury’s transcripts be released for “transparency,” according to ABC News.
“If you did everything you could do on Breonna’s behalf, you shouldn’t have any problems whatsoever, Daniel Cameron,” Crump said, “release the transcript to see you fought for all of Kentucky’s citizens.”
“We’ve been saying “Say Her Name” for six months… and #BreonnaTaylor‘s name was NEVER mentioned in yesterday’s indictment…” Ben Crump said on Twitter on the day of the grand jury’s decision.
When the grand jury answered if the officer would be punished, a long time demand of many, the decision left hopefuls unhappy. Cameron announced that the officers were justified in the fatal shooting incident that killed Taylor because Taylor’s boyfriend shot at them, The Associated Press said. Brett Hankison, the only officer charged, was guilty of three counts of wanton endangerment for firing shots into houses neighboring Taylor’s. However, there was no indictment for the other two officers who shot Taylor.
Following the grand jury’s decision, Taylor’s family and many others were upset because they believed justice wasn’t served. Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mom, admitted that she “never had faith” in Cameron to investigate her daughter’s shooting, CBS News said. Palmer partially blamed what she called Cameron’s lack of experience.
Similarly to Palmer, some have shared the same fear and concern as Taylor’s family, which is that Cameron didn’t defend Taylor. “Kentucky attorney general didn’t recommend any homicide charges to Breonna Taylor grand jury,” The Hill tweeted on Oct. 1.
“#Repost from @aclu_nationwide: We still demand #justiceforbreonnataylor,” Demi Lovato, singer and actress, said in an Instagram post on Sept. 23, after hearing the court’s decision. The jury’s decision also led to protest in cities across the nation like New York City and Louisville.
Two officers were even shot in a protest in Louisville, according to the New York Times.
“We’re tired of being hashtags. We’re tired of paying for history in our blood and our bodies and being told to respond to this violence and aggression with peace,” regular protester Carmen Jones said, per MPR News. Like her, protesters have been calling for the end of police brutality and the systemic racism in the United States.
City officials in Louisville agreed to pay Taylor’s family a $12 million settlement and promised that they would “institute changes aimed at preventing future deaths by officers,” The New York Times stated. Additionally, the payment was larger than the amount Eric Garner’s relatives received after his murder. Some of the changes include flagging officers who were previously accused of using excessive force.
“When you know what the right thing to do is you do it. Why wait?” Mayor Greg Fischer said, according to the New York Times.