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Breonna Taylor's mother: 'I never had faith in' Kentucky AG Daniel Cameron

The lawyers for Taylor's family called on Cameron to release the evidence he presented to the grand jury.
Image: Louisville Reacts After Cop Charged With Wanton Endangerment In Breonna Taylor's Death
Bianca Austin, aunt of Breonna Taylor, Attorney Ben Crump, Ju'Niyah Palmer, Breonna Taylor's sister, Tamika Palmer, mother of Breonna Taylor, and Attorney Lonita Baker arrive ahead of a news conference at Jefferson Square Park on September 25, 2020 in Louisville, Ky.Brandon Bell / Getty Images

Tamika Palmer, Breonna Taylor's mother, said she "never had faith" in Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, as lawyers for the family demand the release of evidence.

Attorneys Ben Crump, Lonita Baker, and Sam Aguiar joined Taylor's family for a press conference Friday to address the grand jury's decision not to charge the three Louisville officers with Taylor's March 13 death during a drug raid at her apartment.

Only one officer, former detective Brett Hankison, was indicted by the grand jury on Wednesday. The charge, first-degree wanton endangerment, accuses Hankison of firing gunshots into a neighboring apartment.

During Friday's press conference, Taylor's aunt read a message from Palmer.

"I never had faith in Daniel Cameron to begin with," Bianca Austin said. "I knew he was too inexperienced to deal with a job of this caliber. I knew he had already chosen to be on the wrong side of the law the moment he wanted the grand jury to make the decision. What I had hoped is that he knew he had the power to do the right thing. That he had the power to start the healing of this city."

Austin, who wore Taylor's EMT jacket, continued, "I was reassured Wednesday of why I have no faith in the legal system, in the police, in the laws that are not made to protect us Black and brown people."

Taylor, 26, an emergency medical technician, was killed after police broke down the door of her apartment as part of a narcotics investigation. The subject of the probe lived at a different address.

Her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired a shot at the door, striking police Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, according to authorities. Walker, who had a license to carry, said he believed it was a home invasion.

Officers had obtained a no-knock warrant, but police and one witness said officers announced themselves, Cameron said at a news conference Wednesday. Walker has said that he and Taylor did not hear anyone say "police."

Crump questioned what evidence Cameron presented to the grand jury and called for the transcripts to be made public.

"Did he present any evidence on Breonna Taylor's behalf? Or did he make a unilateral decision to put his thumb on the scales of justice to help try to exonerate and justify the killing of Breonna Taylor by these police officers? And in doing so, make sure that Breonna Taylor's family never got their day in court," he said at the press conference.

"Release the transcript so we can have transparency. If you did everything that you could do on Breonna's behalf you shouldn't have any problem whatsoever, Daniel Cameron, to releasing the transcript."

Baker echoed Crump's comments.

"Not only do we want the recordings and the transcript, what we also want is for you to quit dodging the questions. You were asked at the press conference, did you make a recommendation, you refused to answer," she said.

Gov. Andy Beshear has made similar statements.

"Since the attorney general has determined not to pursue certain charges, it's time to post all the information, all the facts, all the interviews, all the evidence, all the ballistics, to truly let people look at the information,” he said during an appearance Thursday on MSNBC.

A spokesperson for Cameron's office responded to the governor, saying, "We appreciate Governor Beshear’s team providing assistance to our office and the Commonwealth over the last few days in preparation for today’s announcement. However, releasing that information now would compromise the federal investigation and violate a prosecutor’s ethical duties."

Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice presidential nominee and a former prosecutor in California, called the lack of charges for Taylor's death a "gut punch" but didn't say whether she would have brought a case against the three officers.

"I don't know all the details of the case, but I will say this, that there needs to be transparency about what happened, and that family and that community deserve justice," Harris said Friday during a NAACP virtual event.