A minor county sheriff’s office in the state has recruited the police detective who fatally shot Breonna Taylor during a violent raid on her apartment in Louisville, Ky. This has sparked both praise and criticism from residents of the rural county.
According to David Wilhoite, the county executive, Myles Cosgrove, one of the two policemen who shot Ms. Taylor in March 2020, was just employed by the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office. Northeast of Louisville, Carroll County is about an hour’s drive away.
After the overnight raid, which incited a wave of protests across the nation in the spring and summer of 2020, Mr. Cosgrove, a white man, was sacked by the Louisville Police Department. According to an F.B.I. investigation, he was the one who fired the shot that killed Ms. Taylor, a Black 26-year-old ER technician who had aspirations of becoming a nurse.
The news of the hire came as a shock to Carrollton, the county seat of Carroll County, albeit opinions in the city were divided. Morgan Zeyak, who expressed concern that the police had hired a “trigger-happy” cop, was among the roughly two dozen protesters who gathered outside the county courthouse to voice their opposition to the employment.
“I hope we get him out of his position,” said Ms. Zeyak, 21, who is Black and lives in Carrollton. “I don’t feel comfortable with him on the police force.” The mother of Ms. Taylor, Tamika Palmer, who resides in Louisville, expressed her displeasure in a statement after learning that Mr. Cosgrove will once more be employed as a police officer.
“When are these cops going to stop protecting bad cops?” Ms. Palmer said. “The people in that county have now got a killer with a badge they’ve got to deal with.” However, proponents of the hiring were easy to find in the roughly 11,000-person county, which is 94 percent white and where 71 percent of voters supported former President Donald J. Trump in the 2020 election.
Many residents of the town who wished to remain anonymous said they had no concerns about Mr. Cosgrove policing the neighborhood. Carol Weatherholt said she did not comprehend the uproar over his employment after she arrived at the courthouse to pick up some paperwork only to discover the doors barred due to the protest.
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“He was never charged, so I don’t know what the protesters are worried about,” said Ms. Weatherholt, 65, who is white. “It’s ridiculous.” In Carrollton’s orderly downtown, where the Ohio River meanders by and offers broad views of barges and the Indiana countryside on the other side, Ernest Welch Jr. owns a restaurant.
He expressed concern that the county was bringing negative attention to itself just as the region was beginning to see a rebirth. Increase in Strep. Here Are Some Tips to Reduce Your Risk. Religious Pop Star Conveys ‘God and Faith’ to Secular Israel.
Wearing a nap dress to the altar “I don’t think he should be in our little county,” Mr. Welch, 72, who is also white, said of Mr. Cosgrove. “We didn’t need another deputy sheriff. I’m afraid it will be a mess if it is not settled soon.” Jarrod Beck, Mr. Cosgrove’s attorney, stated that he had no more comment on the new position.
Mr. Cosgrove has never been accused of a crime, and the Kentucky Law Enforcement Council decided in November not to revoke his certification, allowing him to serve the state as a police officer. States have acted to decertify officers, particularly those who are accused of crimes, in other high-profile situations where officers used lethal force.
This occurred last month in the adjacent state of Tennessee, where the state tried to decertify four policemen accused of fatally beating Tyre Nichols. Other police agencies have come under fire for selecting officers who killed people in questionable situations.
Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old Black youngster playing with a pellet gun in a Cleveland park when he was shot and killed by a white police officer last year, was recruited by a Pennsylvania police department for a short time before he was fired in response to public protest.
When the Louisville police searched for evidence of drug selling by her ex-boyfriend, they raided Ms. Taylor’s flat. Last year, a detective who was involved in obtaining the raid’s search warrant acknowledged that the police had misled the judge who gave the raid his approval.
The former detective claimed that in actuality, there was substantially less of a relationship between Ms. Taylor’s ex-boyfriend and her flat than the police had claimed. Ms. Taylor’s new boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired one shot at the doorway as police officers pried open the apartment door, hitting one of them in the leg. Later, Mr. Walker claimed that he had not heard the officers identify themselves and that he thought they were invaders.
Three officers opened fire in response, striking Ms. Taylor with two of their bullets. No charges have been brought against Mr. Cosgrove or the other officer who fired the shot that struck Ms. Taylor. According to the prosecution, the police were unaware that the search warrant was partially fabricated when they conducted the operation.
Four of the policemen engaged in the raid were the subject of federal charges brought by the Justice Department last year. Not one of them was Mr. Cosgrove. A fourth officer, Brett Hankison, was charged with violating the rights of Ms. Taylor’s neighbors by carelessly firing bullets that flew through Ms. Taylor’s apartment and into theirs.
Three of the officers were charged with providing false information to a judge in order to obtain a warrant to search the apartment. A jury found Mr. Hankison, the sole officer in the case who was charged by the state, not guilty of endangering the neighbors.
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