A member of the Breonna Taylor Grand Jury has successfully pressured the Kentucky AG into releasing the deliberation tapes

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/09/30/a-member-of-the-breonna-taylor-grand-jury-has-successfully-pressured-the-kentucky-ag-into-releasing-the-deliberation-tapes.html



Yes, it isn’t on the jury. The others weren’t even on the table, so the grand jury didn’t make any decision about them at all. The spin on that should be they were never cleared of anything either, by a jury, anyway. Their crime remains unaddressed.

Basically, they seem to have picked the cop that shot wildly into the apartment as the scapegoat, probably because he pissed off the other cops who he could have accidentally shot too. The “endangerment” in question probably has nothing to do with the residents of the apartment at all.


Note also that he was only charged for shooting into Chelsey Napper and Cody Etherton’s apartment (next to Breonna Taylor’s), but not into Stanley David’s apartment (above it) despite the fact that bullets entered both of them through the walls and ceiling of Breonna Taylor’s apartment.

The difference? Chelsey Napper and Cody Etherton are white, while Stanley David is Black.

(Napper and Etherton are completely blameless here- their lawyer has said that they would like all 3 officers to face charges for Taylor’s death).


If you listen to AG Cameron’s press conference, he made it quite clear that his office decided that there were to be no charges against the officers for shooting Breonna Taylor before the grand jury was convened. Either the Louisville district attorney or Cameron need to convene a new grand jury. As no jury was given a chance to indict the first time, the idea of double jeopardy shouldn’t apply


It wouldn’t apply even if they had been given the chance to indict- only if the officers had actually been indicted and a jury sworn to try them.


I know nothing about criminal law, but that seems like a bad idea to me. What would stop an overzealous prosecutor from repeatedly bringing the same case to grand juries until finding one that would indict?


“I [Thomas Puccio, a famous district attorney] could indict a ham sandwich”

1 Like

If people can be charged with murder when they commit a crime and someone dies (even if that person was killed by the police), it seems reasonable - and necessary - that it should be true for cops, too - the warrant was invalid, based on false affidavits, after all. (And even if the lies presented as evidence for the warrant were correct, it still didn’t justify a “no-knock”.) Leaving aside the reckless, blind discharge of firearms, which needs to be prosecuted on its own, they committed a crime in being there that directly led to someone’s death.


The way that I read it was basically "It’s not double jeopardy unless the trial actually completes, or at least has a jury listen to it?

1 Like

Grand juries are investigative in nature. One of the rolls of jurors in them is to determine if a crime has taken place, and if there is sufficient evidence to charge a particular person. They do not charge people, or try guilt or innocence.

With the exception of things like murder and capital crimes Grand Jury indictments aren’t required to charge. And as the indictment is non binding nothing requires charging even with an indictment. Though it is difficult to convict if a grand jury declined to indict, and there is little point in going through the process if there’s not intention of charging anyone.

The whole thing is controlled and overseen by a judge, and you need a court order to convene a Grand Jury or admit a case to one. It’s generally not going to happen without new evidence, or more to investigate. And you want those things to be looked at. This is what bars prosecutors from just going back to the well over and over. Even if they did they aren’t going to be able to compel the same witnesses to give the same testimony over and over until they get what they want.

Imagine if Donald Trump was now immune on all the things we investigated him for, just because no one even sought an indictment. Cause you don’t even need to seek an indictment. It’s not neccisarily what these are for. A Grand Jury inquiry is not a trial, it’s a prosecutor asking witnesses questions under oath and placing evidence on court record.

In a Grand Jury no one has been charged or tried. And no determination is made as to guilt. Double Jeopardy protects you from being charged and tried multiple times for the same actions. So it doesn’t apply till you’ve been charged and tried.


I understand what a grand jury is. My question was on the ability of prosecutors to repeat them at will.

Thank you, this answers my question.

This is the complete opposite of what I was saying. I was arguing that no indictment being sought is a reason that further prosecution of the cops is needed.

all this. and oh yeah, weren’t they dressed in uniform, they were in plain clothes. there are questions whether they even tried to identify themselves. and nobody was wearing their body camera.

it’s like a freaking hit squad.


Is the AG up for reelection?

1 Like

Grand juries are simply a farce. Just a tool used by the prosecuting attorneys to get or not get a indictment by simply putting forth selected evidence and witness to get the result they want. I just chuckle to myself every time I hear that a grand jury is being called for. Either someone is getting railroaded or being let off the hook. Off the hook if you carry a badge and a gun of course. The indicted officer in this case is probably 99.9% going to end up getting a not guilty from the jury anyhow.

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.