Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear is calling for more transparency in the Breonna Taylor case. On Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, according to CNN, Beshear specifically called out Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron.
“The current situation raises serious concerns, as multiple grand jurors are now claiming that Attorney General Cameron has not been truthful to the public about what occurred in the grand jury process,” Beshear said in a statement. “I trust Kentuckians with the truth, and the next step should be to release all information, evidence, grand jury conversations, recorded or not — everything.”
The governor’s statement was released after a second anonymous juror revealed that jurors were not given an opportunity to consider homicide charges in Taylor’s case.
On Oct. 7, Cameron filed a motion to prevent members of the grand jury from speaking about Taylor’s case after an anonymous juror filed a motion on Sept. 28 to speak publicly about the case, saying Cameron used grand jurors “as a shield to deflect accountability and responsibility for these decisions.”
The juror’s motion also asked the court to release a recording of the full grand jury proceedings. One day later, Cameron released about 15 hours of audio recordings of the proceedings, but the recordings did not include the charges that were presented to the jurors. Cameron never gave the grand jury the option of murder charges because he claimed that Taylor’s boyfriend fired gunshots at officers first, an account that was not confirmed by the ballistics report.
The anonymous juror wanted to publicly discuss “charges that were not presented to the grand jury, explanations of the law that were not provided to the grand jury, defenses or justifications that were not detailed during the proceedings, witnesses that did not testify, potential defendants that were not presented, and/or individuals or officials who were not present for the proceedings.”
On Thursday, a second grand juror echoed the sentiments of the first grand juror, stating that “no opportunity to consider anything else was permitted” and looking “forward to continuing to help set the record straight.”
Cameron claims that allowing the jurors to speak about the proceedings would create havoc.
“The grand jury process is secretive for a reason, to protect the safety and anonymity of all the grand jurors, witnesses and innocent persons involved in the proceedings,” Cameron said in a statement. “Allowing this disclosure would irreversibly alter Kentucky’s legal system by making it difficult for prosecutors and the public to have confidence in the secrecy of the grand jury process going forward.”
On March 13, three police officers — Brett Hankison, Jonathan Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove — entered Taylor’s apartment after obtaining a no-knock warrant. The officers fired more than 20 shots, resulting in Taylor’s death.
Hankison, who was fired from the force in June, is being charged for firing his weapon indiscriminately into Taylor’s apartment and other adjoining units, but not with Taylor’s death. In turn, he was given a $15,000 bond and could face up to only five years in prison.