Unreleased Footage Gives an Inside Look at the Night Breonna Taylor Died

VICE News' 22-minute documentary, largely comprised of never-before-seen footage, provides a much more complete sense of what happened.
October 6, 2020, 8:31pm

When Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced the result of his office's investigation into the death of 26-year-old Breonna Taylor, he made what happened on March 13 seem simple: Three officers—now former Louisville Metro Police Department Detective Brett Hankison, Detective Myles Cosgrove, and Sgt. Jon Mattingly—fired their weapons during a botched raid on Taylor's apartment. And none of them could be charged for Taylor's death, because her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired first.

The response was immediate, and negative. Protesters took to the streets, insisting this wasn't the justice they’d been marching for every day for months. One grand juror even filed a motion to break the secrecy that normally surrounds grand jury proceedings, alleging that the attorney general was using the grand jury’s decision to shield himself.

On October 2, Cameron's office released 15 hours of audio tapes of prosecutors presenting evidence to the grand jury. VICE News has reviewed the tapes in their entirety, as well as much of the investigative file, which was compiled by LMPD investigators and handed over to Cameron's office and includes hundreds of hours of bodycam footage and officer interviews, plus thousands of pages of documents.

And together, the tapes and documents tell a much more complicated—and hazy—story than the one Cameron told.

In a 22-minute documentary largely comprised of never-before-seen footage, VICE News gives a much more complete sense of what happened on the night Taylor was killed, including the immediate chaos caused by the botched raid, the long list of policy violations that followed, the failure to secure the crime scene, and the inconsistencies and contradictions in testimonies by the officers involved. The documentary also compares what AG Cameron told the public to what the evidence actually shows, and how that evidence was—or in some cases wasn't—presented to the grand jury.