As the country is waiting to see if the police officers who killed Breonna Taylor in her own home will be charged, reality tv star Porsha Williams is speaking out about her activism for the 26-year-old EMT worker.
In an essay for PEOPLE, Real Housewives of Atlanta star Porsha Williams wrote, “It would be wrong of me to sit at home in my comfort while people I love are suffering injustice. I believe that love is an action word. I love my skin color, I love my heritage and I love my daughter. It is my job, my duty, to protect the things I love.”
She continued, “The reason I kissed my daughter at home, got on a plane during a pandemic and protested in Kentucky two times now was because people were forgetting about the “extreme indifference to the value of human life," as Louisville Metro interim chief Robert Schroeder described former officer Brett Hankison's actions. We needed to escalate the conversation again and demand action.”
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The 39-year-old also added, “I’ve been arrested twice in the name of justice and, ironically enough, have spent more time in jail than the people I’m protesting against. Yes, I can repeat that: I’ve now spent more time in jail than the people I’m protesting against.”
Williams was arrested in July for protesting at the home of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron over the lack of justice for Breonna Taylor. She reportedly would have faced up to five years in prison (charges were dropped July 17).
It's been 194 days since Breonna Taylor was killed while sleeping in her apartment in Louisville. After months of protests and demands for justice from activists across the globe, Kentucky attorney general Daniel Cameron is expected to make an announcement about whether or not the state will put criminal charges against the cops who killed her.
In anticipation of the possible announcement this week, the Louisville police chief Robert Schroeder has declared a state of emergency for the Louisville Metro Police Department.
On March 13, Louisville police officers shot Taylor, 26, at least eight times while serving a “no-knock” narcotics search warrant at her home as part of a narcotics investigation into her former boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover. However, Glover had been arrested earlier that night in a different location and no drugs were found in Taylor's home.
The police officers — Jonathan Mattingly, Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankinson — were placed on administrative reassignment after the shooting and Hankison was later fired.
Last week, the city of Louisville announced a $12 million settlement with the estate of Breonna Taylor, which set a precedent as the largest civil settlement in the history of the city.
The settlement also came with the implementation of several police reforms called "Breonna's Law," including a requirement that search warrants be approved by police commanders before a judge sees them. It also would give housing credits to Louisville Metro Police Department officers who agree to live within the city, and seeks authority for drug and alcohol testing of officers involved in shootings. Social workers would also be dispatched with police officers in cases where assistance is needed with mental or emotional distress, and an early warning system to identify officers with red flags.
Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mother, said about the settlement, “A lot of decisions goes into coming into these agreements and, you know, for me, it's thinking about making sure that I'm doing the right thing and doing the right thing by Breonna.” The family is still also calling for the officers involved in Taylor’s death to be charged.
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