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Breonna Taylor's Mother Requests New Special Prosecutor

Tamika Palmer, mother of Breonna Taylor, stands at a press conference in Jefferson Square Park on Sept. 25th, 2020.
Tamika Palmer, mother of Breonna Taylor, stands at a press conference in Jefferson Square Park on Sept. 25th, 2020.

Breonna Taylor’s mother has asked for the appointment of a new special prosecutor to revive the investigation into the actions of the Louisville Metro Police officers who shot and killed her daughter on March 13.

Tamika Palmer submitted an application to the Kentucky Prosecutors Advisory Council on Wednesday, her attorney Lonita Baker said.

In a letter addressed to members of the council, Palmer requested a “competent and capable prosecutor” willing to handle the case. Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s office prosecuted the case and took it to a grand jury last month.

In her letter to the council, Palmer described traveling to Frankfort on Sept. 23 to hear from Cameron about the grand jury proceedings.

“The Attorney General advised me that the grand jury declined to indict other officers and that his team had done the best they could,” she wrote. “A.G. Cameron and one of his prosecutors then advised me that I should consider finding peace through the Lord and watched as I sobbed uncontrollably.”

Palmer also acknowledged the “collaborative and positive” relationship prosecutors maintain with law enforcement, but asked that they set aside those relationships, potential ideals and preconceived notions about these kinds of cases.

“Through this process, we seek to have an independent prosecutor appointed to present a full and unbiased case to a new grand jury,” Baker wrote in an email announcing the news.

The move comes after two anonymous grand jurors publicly refuted Cameron’s statements regarding the grand jury proceedings last month. The grand jury indicted former LMPD detective Brett Hankison on three counts of wanton endangerment for shooting into a neighboring apartment. They did not charge the officers for Taylor’s death.

Cameron said the grand jury agreed not to bring homicide charges against the officers, but two grand jurors pushed back on that as recently as Wednesday morning, saying they were only asked to consider the wanton endangerment charges.

In a “CBS This Morning” interview Wednesday, one grand juror spoke about Palmer.

“I need her to know that it wasn’t us,” said Juror 1, whose identity hasn’t been revealed. “I have no idea how she feels, I can only imagine. But I needed her to know that we tried. We were only allowed to decide on what they gave to us.”

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