Audio from interviews with Louisville police Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, one of the officers involved in Taylor’s fatal shooting, reveals new details about what transpired that night.
After midnight on March 13, Mattingly led a group of at least seven officers into Taylor’s home under the assumption that drugs were being sold out of the home. In the interview, Mattingly claims that police knocked on Taylor’s door and announced themselves several times and says that a neighbor who lives above Taylor came outside and got into some form of a verbal altercation with the officers. After no response, Mattingly began hitting the door with a battering ram. After three hits, the door broke loose, and the officers entered the home.
Mattingly says he was about 20 feet away from where a “male” and a “female” were standing. He claims that as soon as he “cleared the room” inside, the male, identified as Taylor’s boyfriend #KennethWalker fired a shot at him. Mattingly returned fire at both Taylor and Walker. Taylor, 26, died after being shot at least eight times. Police say they were executing a search warrant and claim to have worn plain clothes that had the word “police” on the front and back. No drugs were found in the apartment. Mattingly’s interview was performed two weeks after Taylor’s murder.
Walker was indicted for the attempted murder of a police officer and assault, but the charges were dismissed after public outcry. The Kentucky Attorney General’s office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are looking into the case, according to NBC News. The outlet reports that no charges have been filed against the three offices who shot at the victims that night. Since then, Taylor’s family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against officers. One officer has been fired, according to NBC. Walker said he heard the knock but got no answer to who it was. Fearing that it was a push-in robbery, Walker grabbed his licensed gun and fired a shot when police broke in, The New York Post reports.
After the fatal shooting, officers reportedly went up to Walker and told him there had been a “misunderstanding.” “Why’d he say to me that there was a misunderstanding?” Walker asked when he was being interviewed hours after the raid. “I don’t know,” Sgt. Amanda Seelye, a member of the Louisville department’s Public Integrity Unit, said. “That’s some new information for us as well.” He responded, “I’m not an idiot. They figured out something. They did something wrong.”
During Mattingly’s interview, Sgt. Jason Vance said Mattingly “rightfully” returned fire. “That’s kind of like what I was getting to because of your positioning, you know, initially when you’re shot. And then rightfully so, you’re returning fire,” said Vance. “Mm-hmmm,” Mattingly replied.