Louisville Police Department Cancels Vacation, Days Off for Personnel in Preparation for Breonna Taylor Ruling

The Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) declared a state of emergency on Monday to prepare for a forthcoming announcement from Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron in the Breonna Taylor investigation.

LMPD Interim Chief of Police Robert Schroeder announced the state of emergency in a letter addressed to all LMPD personnel that was obtained by the Louisville-based television station WDRB. All vacation days and time-off requests for LMPD personnel have been suspended as part of the declaration, according to the memorandum.

The decision was made "to ensure we have the appropriate level of staffing to provide for public safety services and our policing functions," Schroeder wrote. The state of emergency is effective immediately and will continue until further notice, his memo said.

Breonna Taylor memorial
Tamika Palmer (center), mother of Breonna Taylor, is comforted as she looks over a memorial dedicated to her daughter on September 15, 2020 in Louisville, Kentucky. On Monday, the Louisville Metro Police Department said it has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of an announcement in the Breonna Taylor case. Brandon Bell/Getty

Cameron's office has not yet said when a decision will be made in the case or when the ruling will be publicly announced. Newsweek reached out to Cameron's office for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

According to the Louisville-based television station WAVE, federal officers were expected to be placed around federal buildings, which the station said would be closed this week. LMPD officers were instructed to prepare for a possible decision in the case this week, WAVE reported.

"The public may also see barriers being staged around downtown, which is another part of our preparations," LMPD Sgt. Lamont Washington told WDRB.

The LMPD told The Louisville Courier Journal on Monday that its Professional Standards Unit was investigating six officers in connection with Taylor's death. The department told the paper that officials within the unit launched the investigation and that, if any of the six officers are found to have taken actions at odds with department policies, they could face a range of disciplinary actions, including a written rebuke or a termination letter.

The investigation by the LMPD's Public Integrity Unit is independent of the Professional Standards Unit's investigation, according to the paper. The former is the one that was sent to Cameron's office for further evaluation.

Last week, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer announced that Taylor's family would receive a $12 million settlement, the largest connected to allegations of police misconduct in the city's history. At the time, Fischer said that his office wanted to move forward with the settlement as Cameron's investigation continued.

The shooting that took Taylor's life on March 13 is one of several incidents involving alleged violence against Black Americans by police that inspired the wave of Black Lives Matter protests in the U.S. and abroad throughout the summer. Taylor was inside her Louisville apartment with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, at the time that plainclothes officers served a no-knock warrant. Walker later told police he did not hear the officers announce themselves at the door and fired his gun at them when they forcibly entered the home, believing them to be intruders. Taylor was fatally struck when the officers returned fire.

One LMPD officer involved in the incident was fired in June and two others were placed on administrative reassignment, but none currently face criminal charges. At the end of August, Cameron said his office received a "critical" ballistics report in the case but did not publicly disclose the report's findings.

This story has been updated with additional information and background.