Breonna Taylor decision: arrests as protesters take to streets for second night

Breonna Taylor decision: arrests as protesters take to streets for second night

  • Anger over lack of direct charges for police officers spurs new demonstrations in Louisville and across US

Protesters took to the streets of Louisville and other US cities once again on Thursday, as public anger and sadness swelled in the wake of the announcement that no police officers would be charged directly with the shooting death of Breonna Taylor in March.

Tensions were running high in the Kentucky city after a day of peaceful protests turned violent on Wednesday night, when two police officers sustained injuries from gunshots fired at a protest. Local officials have urged calm as protests continue.

On Thursday night police made several arrests, including state representative Attica Scott, a Democrat who has called for justice for Taylor.

“At least 24 people were arrested throughout the evening for charges including unlawful assembly, failure to disperse and riot in the first degree,” the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) said in a statement.

Activists, who were chanting Taylor’s name and marching as police in riot gear blocked roads, had vowed to press on after a grand jury on Wednesday failed to bring homicide charges against the officers who burst into her apartment during a drug investigation in March. Demonstrators turned out despite the city remaining under a 9pm curfew. The protest appeared to end after tense negotiations at about 11pm.

Hundreds of people also turned out again in New York, Philadelphia, St Louis, Baltimore, and other cities across the country to mark the second second night of largely peaceful action, with demonstrators chanting “Say her name! Breonna Taylor!” and holding signs demanding justice.

“The question obviously is: what do we do with this pain?” the Louisville mayor, Greg Fischer, said during a news conference. “There is no one answer, no easy answer to that question.”