Protesters in Santa Ana decry lack of charges in Breonna Taylor’s killing

Demonstrators in Santa Ana, outraged by the lack of charges filed against two Louisville officers who fired at Breonna Taylor, leaving her dead following a police raid gone wrong in March, voiced their disillusionment with the justice system Wednesday, Sept. 23.

A grand jury in Kentucky announced it would not indict Sgt. John Mattingly and Det. Myles Cosgrove in connection with Taylor’s death on March 13. It found that the officers were justified in shooting at her and her boyfriend, who opened fire at people he thought were intruders in their apartment.

A former detective was charged Wednesday with three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment for actions he took during the raid. Brett Hankinson had no involvement in her death, but is accused of firing blindly through a door and window of an apartment neighboring Taylor’s. No drugs were found in her home.

Evan Jarboe, a 26-year-old native of Louisville, Ky., who now lives in Garden Grove, held a sign that read “Justice 4 “Breonna Taylor.” He decried the three charges handed against one officer in connection with Taylor’s death, describing them as an insult and too lenient.

“It’s a slap in the face to the city and the utmost disrespect for people who for the last six months have been protesting (Taylor’s killing), he said.

Jarboe was one of about 25 protesters gathered at the intersection of Bristol Street and McFadden Avenue at 7 p.m. They shouted “No Justice, No Peace, No Racist Police,” and other slogans.

Abel Delacruz, a 22-year-old  organizer with the activist organization By Any Means Necessary, pumped up the crowd with a fiery speech delivered through a megaphone.

“Our only option is to keep fighting in the streets to free us from the actions of these racist cops,” he said.

Tomie Ortiz, who also belongs to Any Means Necessary, said changing the bad behavior of some police officers will only occur if protesters remain vigilant.

“The power is always with the people from the bottom up,” said the 22-year-old Santa Ana College student.

The demonstration in Santa Ana was peaceful, and protesters disassembled at about 8 p.m. No police were seen at the event.

Meanwhile, large crowds of protesters gathered in Louisville leading to tension between them and law enforcement. Gunfire rang out at some point amidst demonstrations, leaving two officers wounded Wednesday evening.

Protester Evan Jarboe, originally from Kentucky, said Wednesday’s decision (by the grand jury) was, “a slap in the face, for Breonna” and added, “a first responder killed in the sanctity of her own home.” Jarboe was protesting in Santa Ana on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (Photo by Karen Tapia, Contributing Photographer)

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