The police chief in Louisville, Kentucky has been fired after it was revealed that officers involved in the shooting death of a local business owner during George Floyd protests early Monday did not have their body cameras activated.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer announced the decision to cut Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad during a Monday afternoon press conference.
‘This type of institutional failure will not be tolerated,’ Fischer said.
Conrad was slated to retire on July 1.
Officers in the Louisville police force had been required to wear active body cameras following the death of Breonna Taylor – a 26-year-old black EMT who was killed in her home in March by Louisville police carrying out a ‘no-knock warrant’.
Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad (above) was relieved of duty by Mayor Greg Fischer on Monday after it was revealed two officers involved in the shooting death of a local business owner at George Floyd protests earlier that day did not have their bodycameras activated
At 12.15am Louisville police and the National Guard were sent to break up a crowd of protesters at a parking lot and ‘returned fire’ after someone shot at them, and ended up killing David McAtee (above), 53-year-old black man who owned YaYa’s BBQ in western Louisville
In the incident officers with Louisville police and the National Guard were sent to break up a crowd at a parking lot around 12.15am and ‘returned fire’ into the group.
‘Officers and soldiers began to clear the lot and at some point were shot at. Both LMPF and National Guard members returned fire, we have one man dead at scene,’ Conrad said in a statement following the confrontation.
The victim was later identified as David McAtee, a 53-year-old black man who owned YaYa’s BBQ in western Louisville and was lovingly referred to as ‘the BBQ man’ by locals.
The two officers involved in the shooting were either not wearing or did not have their cameras activated and have been placed on administrative leave.
‘That is completely unacceptable. And there is no excuse for their clear failure to (follow) our policy,’ Acting Chief Rob Schroeder said.
Officers in Louisville had been ordered to wear active body cameras following the March death of 26-year-old black EMT Breonna Taylor. Conrad (above) had previously announced he would retire on July 1
Mayor Greg Fischer shared this statement mourning the death of David McAtee
Gov Andy Beshear shared this statement saying he has authorized the Kentucky State Police to launch an independent investigation
Surveillance footage and police radio transmissions were released by the LMPF on Monday but didn’t provide answers in the incident. More footage from the incident will be released.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear condemned the incident in a statement Monday morning saying: ‘LMPD and the Kentucky National Guard returned fire resulting in death’ and that he has asked the Kentucky State Police to independently investigate the shooting.
At his morning pres conference Beshear called on authorities to release body camera footage and was outraged to learn there was none.
Now he hopes for cell phone or other citizen video of the confrontation to emerge.
‘I believe the people of Kentucky deserve to see it for themselves,’ he said.
On Sunday night alone more than 40 people were arrested marking the city’s fourth consecutive night of protests in Louisville
Army National Guard Soldiers stand with Louisville Metro Police officers during a protest against the deaths of Breonna Taylor by Louisville police and George Floyd by Minneapolis police in Louisville, Kentucky on Sunday night
The National Guard and Louisville Metro Police pictured armed with batons and shields blocking a street during Louisville protests on Sunday
A man raises his arms during a protest in Louisville on Sunday night
Officials haven’t said if the crowd in the parking lot of Dino’s Food Mart consisted of protesters or customers. The gathering came after the 9pm curfew in Louisville.
Protests took place in Louisville over the weekend to denounce the death of black man George Floyd, who died last week after a white police officer in Minneapolis kept a knee on his neck for over eight minutes in a disturbing video that has sent shock waves across the country.
Louisville police officers had been ordered to keep their bodycams activated following the police killing of 26-year-old black EMT Breonna Taylor (above) in March during a botch drug raid
Protesters also decried the police killing of Breonna Taylor. Taylor’s family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit claiming that she and her boyfriend thought their home was being broken into when officers entered without knocking. Her boyfriend shot at officers because they didn’t identify themselves and in turn Taylor was shot eight times in her bed.
On Sunday night alone more than 40 people were arrested marking the city’s fourth consecutive night of protests in Louisville.
On Thursday seven people were shot in the city during protests that took a violence turn. Officers were not involved in those shootings, Police Sgt. Lamont Washington said at the time, as per NBC.
Late Monday a crowd gathered at the parking lot in front of McAtee’s shop to mourn together. Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer arrived after 11am and was seen hugging and consoling McAtee’s mother.
Now locals are voicing their outrage over the death of McAtee.
‘He didn’t hurt nobody, didn’t deserve to get shot down like he did. I don’t know what happened, but whatever happened here, my brother didn’t do nothing wrong. He was an innocent person, and innocent bystander. He did not deserve this at all,’ McAtee’s sister said to Wave3.
She said that the crowd that gathered wasn’t a park of Louisville protests and that this group gathered every Sunday night for food and music and her brother always served food as his restaurant was next door to Dino’s Food Mart.
McAtee’s mother called him a ‘community pillar’.
‘He left a great legend behind. He was a good person. Everybody around him would say that. My son didn’t hurt nobody. He didn’t do nothing to nobody,’ she said to the Courier-Journal.
She said her son even had a good relationship with police and would give law enforcement officers free meals.
‘He fed them free. He fed the police and didn’t charge them nothing,’ she said.