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Louisville police release body cam footage after officer shot and injured 2 teens

A screenshot from a video shots the body camera footage of a police officer holding a gun. He's standing outside a garage with the sliding door closed.
Courtesy LMPD
The video released by LMPD shows officer Brendan Kaiser responding to a call of teens allegedly breaking into a detached garage.

Louisville police identified Officer Brendan Kaiser as the person who fired his weapon while responding to a call of multiple kids who allegedly broke into a detached garage.

Warning: This story contains descriptions of a shooting. 

The Louisville Metro Police Department released body camera footage today from the officers involved in a Feb. 20 shooting in which two teenagers were injured.

LMPD identified Officer Brendan Kaiser as the person who fired his weapon while responding to a call of multiple kids who allegedly broke into a detached garage in the 800 block of South 38th Street. The department did not identify the second officer shown in the footage with his gun drawn.

In a written statement at the start of the video, LMPD says the two officers pulled out their weapons because “they did not know who was inside” the garage or “whether the individuals were armed.”

The footage released Friday afternoon shows Kaiser calling for additional officers roughly six minutes after arriving at the garage. Over the radio he says he has the individuals trapped inside.

About five minutes after Kaiser’s radio call, someone inside pulls up the sliding garage door, and multiple kids run out. While attempting to grab one of the kids, Kaiser fires his gun.

The video provides little clarity as to whether Kaiser pulled the trigger or if it was an “accidental” discharge, as LMPD claimed in a press conference shortly after the shooting occurred. Kaiser can be seen in the footage with his finger off the trigger, as is department training, but view of the gun is lost as Kaiser runs into the garage. A loud pop is audible in the video.

In a statement within the video, LMPD said there was “no evidence at the scene that would’ve indicated anyone was injured.” Two teenagers later arrived separately at Norton Children’s Hospital and Norton Children’s Downtown with gunshot wounds.

“After putting together all available evidence, including body camera video, the detectives ultimately determined that the teens were at the garage on South 38th Street,” the department stated in the video.

LMPD released Kaiser’s personnel file Friday along with the body camera footage. Kaiser joined the department in 2016 and has since wracked up multiple policy violations.

In April of 2020, he was suspended without pay for four days for failing to de-escalate a situation after responding to a call along Broadway. Kaiser was also reprimanded in 2018 for using profanity and “inappropriate force” against a child while responding to a break-in. He also failed to activate his body-worn camera during that incident.

Kaiser was exonerated of wrongdoing after using deadly force during an April 25, 2018 shooting, although his personnel file does not elaborate on what occurred. The Courier Journal reported that night that a Louisville police officer shot and killed Issac Jackson, 42, after Jackson allegedly attacked another officer. Kaiser also received at least a dozen commendations during his career.

LMPD said the Feb. 20 shooting remains an ongoing administrative and criminal investigation. Once the investigation is complete, the department will hand over the files to Kentucky State Police for review before submitting them to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

Kaiser is currently on administrative leave.

Support for this story was provided in part by theJewish Heritage Fund.

News Youth Reporting
Roberto Roldan is the City Politics and Government Reporter for WFPL. Email Roberto at rroldan@lpm.org.

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