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Federal Officials Invited To Review LMPD Investigation Of Breonna Taylor Killing

 Two Louisville Metro Police Department cruisers are parked under an overpass in Louisville.
J. Tyler Franklin
Louisville Public Media
Two Louisville Metro Police Department cruisers are parked under an overpass in Louisville.

Federal officials will have the opportunity to review the Louisville Metro Police Department's internal investigation into the March 13 raid in which officers shot 26-year-old Breonna Taylor at least eight times, killing her.

People across the country are calling for an outside investigation of the events leading to Taylor's death as her story has become better known in recent days.

LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said Thursday he had reached out to Russell Coleman, the United States Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky, and Robert Brown, special agent in charge of the FBI's Louisville Field Office.

"Both officers will have an opportunity to review the investigation and make any decisions they want to make," Conrad said during a Facebook Live town hall with Mayor Greg Fischer and other city and police officials.

The internal investigation is looking at whether any criminal conduct occurred. He said it is nearly complete, and Fischer said it could wrap up in the coming weeks, Conrad said.

The primary responsibility of reviewing the investigation will fall to Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron's office. Normally that would be handled by the office of the Commonwealth's Attorney, Tom Wine, but he recused the office because he is prosecuting a case against Kenneth Walker.

Walker was at home with Taylor, his girlfriend, when police unexpectedly entered the apartment after midnight as part of a narcotics investigation. Police say the officers identified themselves before entering, but neighbors and Walker say they did not, according to court documents. Walker fired at the officers, believing them to be intruders, his attorney has said. The officers fired back and hit Taylor multiple times. Walker was charged with first degree assault and attempting to murder a police officer.

Fischer said his Thursday his administration invites and welcomes outside review of the investigation.

"Everybody knows it's a tragedy when anybody passes, we get that. We understand the frustration of the family as well when they lose a loved one such as this," he said. "And we understand why we need to have a fair and impartial investigation as well so that justice can take its path after that."

Since first issuing a statement on Tuesday, Fischer has repeatedly described his goal and priority as seeking out the truth and letting justice follow. On Wednesday, he said he was open to review but stopped short of calling for it.

Amina Elahi is LPM's City Editor. Email Amina at aelahi@lpm.org.

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