A grand jury announced that fired Officer Brett Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment in connection to the police raid of Taylor’s home on the night of March 13.
Neither the grand jury nor the presiding judge elaborated on the charges.
The decision came after evidence was presented by a team led by Attorney General Daniel Cameron, a Republican.
Hankison could face up to 15 years in jail if convicted.
Hankison was fired in June for violating police department rules.
Interim Police Chief Robert Schroeder said Hankison violated procedures by showing “extreme indifference to the value of human life” when he “wantonly and blindly” fired 10 shots into Taylor’s apartment. Schroeder also said that Hankison violated the rule against using deadly force.
An undated picture shows Brett Hankinson, a Louisville police officer who was fired in June 2020. (Louisville Police Department via AP)
Police officers exchanged fire with Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker, who fired a shot that struck one of the officers, Cameron told reporters during a press briefing on Wednesday shortly after Hankison was indicted.
Ballistics evidence showed Taylor was struck six times, including one shot that killed her. There’s no conclusive evidence that Hankison fired any of the shots, he said.
An FBI analysis showed the fatal shot was fired by Detective Myles Cosgrove.
The investigation found that Jon Mattingly and Cosgrove “were justified in their use of force” after being fired on by Walker, according to Cameron.
Hankison, Mattingly, Cosgrove, and the detective who sought the warrant, Joshua Jaynes, were placed on administrative reassignment after the shooting.
Walker told police he heard knocking but didn’t know who was coming into the home and fired in self-defense.
He was initially charged with attempted murder. That charge was later dropped.
A woman visits the memorial for Breonna Taylor, in Louisville, Ky., Sept. 11, 2020. (Bryan Woolston/Reuters)
Taylor’s family settled with the city for $12 million last week.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, the mayor of Louisville, told a separate press conference earlier Wednesday, “No matter what Attorney General Cameron announces, I urge everyone to commit once again, to a peaceful, lawful response.”
The Kentucky city’s police department declared a state of emergency on Tuesday ahead of the decision on whether to charge any of the officers.
Fischer ordered access to downtown parking garages restricted and set a countywide 72-curfew, beginning from 9 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.