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KY Clergy Urge Transparency in Breonna Taylor Case

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Protesters have gathered in Louisville for more than 125 days to call for police accountability over the killing of Breonna Taylor. (Adobe Stock)
Protesters have gathered in Louisville for more than 125 days to call for police accountability over the killing of Breonna Taylor. (Adobe Stock)
 By Nadia Ramlagan, Public News Service - KY - Producer, Contact
October 1, 2020

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Faith leaders providing sanctuary for protesters under Louisville's citywide curfew, which lifted on Monday, say they're being targeted by law enforcement.

A legal loophole protects an individual from being in public after curfew if they are traveling to or from a place of worship.

Reverend Ryan Eller, executive director and co-founder of the group New Moral Majority, said churches have been subjected to surveillance drones and a heavy police presence outside their doors.

"There's now a lot of attention and conflict over those sanctuary spaces," Eller said. "And we certainly feel that our religious freedoms, as well as our freedoms of speech, have been violated."

Protests calling for the arrests of the three police officers involved in the killing of 26-year-old Louisville resident Breonna Taylor have continued for more than 125 days. The state Attorney General's Office is expected to publicly release audio recordings of court proceedings in the case Friday.

Eller said despite national media depictions of protest violence, Louisville residents have peacefully marched, and provided food and water, medical care, counseling, and prayer to one another.

He added the number of clergy members who have participated in the protests is unprecedented.

"We have faith leaders who are rabbis and imams, and priests and pastors, White, Black, Latino and from every different racial background that have been supporting this movement," Eller emphasized.

Eller said protesters and Taylor's family have a clear message for Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron.

"There are a number of things that movement leaders, particularly the Black women in our community that have been leading this movement around Breonna Taylor are calling for," Eller said. "The first is quite simple, and that's transparency."

Earlier this week, former police officer Brett Hankison pleaded not guilty to three counts of wanton endangerment for firing into a neighboring apartment during the March raid on Taylor's home.

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