One of the Louisville police officers who fatally shot Breonna Taylor is now suing the 26-year-old’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker. This week, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly filed a civil suit against Walker for emotional distress, assault and battery. Mattingly claims he has experienced “severe trauma, mental anguish and emotional distress” from Walker’s actions on the night of Taylor’s death.
Mattingly’s “emotional distress,” his lawyer argued, stems from Walker allegedly shooting him during the raid. When Mattingly and other Louisville officers barged open Taylor’s apartment door, Walker believed the cops to be intruders. As a licensed gun owner, he fired a warning shot, which investigators believe hit Mattingly in the leg.
“Walker’s conduct in shooting Mattingly is outrageous, intolerable and offends all accepted standards of decency and morality,” the lawsuit reads.
In a statement to CBS News, Mattingly’s lawyer added, “Mattingly was shot and nearly killed by Kenneth Walker. He’s entitled to, and should, use the legal process to seek a remedy for the injury that Walker has caused him.”
However, Walker’s attorney called the suit a “baseless attempt to further victimize and harass” Walker and reiterated that he was acting lawfully in self-defense.
“Kenny Walker is protected by law under KRS 503.085 and is immune from both criminal prosecution and civil liability as he was acting in self-defense in his own home,” his attorney, Steve Romines, told CBS.
“Even the most basic understanding of Kentucky’s ‘Stand Your Ground’ law and the ‘Castle Doctrine’ evidences this fact,” he added. “One would think that breaking into the apartment, executing his girlfriend and framing him for a crime in an effort to cover up her murder would be enough for them. Yet, this baseless attempt to further victimize and harass Kenny indicates otherwise.”
Walker was initially arrested and charged with attempted murder for allegedly shooting Mattingly, but the charges were later dropped. He then filed his own lawsuit against the police department and sought immunity under the “Stand Your Ground” law.
Neither Mattingly nor Myles Cosgrove — another officer who fired shots at Taylor — were charged in her death. Only former officer Brett Hankison was indicted by a grand jury on three counts of wanton endangerment.
However, two grand jurors recently came forward and accused Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron of not presenting them with their full range of potential charging options.