Alicia Keys discusses Breonna Taylor case and says she will ‘continue to speak out’

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Alicia Keys has discussed the handling of Breonna Taylor‘s case and vowed to ‘continue to speak out’ in a new interview with GQ Hype

The 15-time Grammy Award-winning musician, 39, who also took part in a photoshoot and cover for the magazine, added that she’s not sure ‘how long we can go without any justice’. 

Taylor, 26, was shot dead by Louisville Metro Police Department as they served a so-called no-knock warrant at her home in March.   

Speaking out: Alicia Keys has discussed the handling of Breonna Taylor 's case and vowed to 'continue to speak out' in a new interview with GQ Hype

Speaking out: Alicia Keys has discussed the handling of Breonna Taylor ‘s case and vowed to ‘continue to speak out’ in a new interview with GQ Hype 

Celebrities have since reacted with outrage to a Kentucky grand jury’s decision to indict only one of the police officers being investigated for their roles in the fatal shooting of the late 26-year-old last week.  

Alicia, who created the Do You Know What Happened To Breonna Taylor? video campaign in June with Taylor’s mother, artist Rapsody and childhood friend Tamika Mallory, has discussed the handling of the case with GQ Hype.

She said: ‘There is no justice, there is no regard for the life of a black woman who had an incredibly great future… Breonna was essential to the workforce in Louisville and was a bright, shining star, ready to go higher. She deserves to be alive. 

‘She deserves to be able to sleep in her bed and wake up the next morning and continue on with her life. And she deserves for the people who ended her life to be held accountable. 

Killed: Breonna Taylor, 26, was shot and killed by Louisville police on March 13, only one of the three cops involved has been charged

Killed: Breonna Taylor, 26, was shot and killed by Louisville police on March 13, only one of the three cops involved has been charged

‘So how do I think that they handled it? They didn’t handle it! And that is outrageous and completely unacceptable.’

She continued: ‘This is why we continue to speak out. This is why we have to continually say Black Lives Matter and speak Breonna Taylor’s name so what was done will never be forgotten.’

Alicia added: ‘I’m not sure how long we can go without any justice.’

The star went on to reveal that she has ‘such a drive and desire to do great things’ but added that it is both ‘wonderful and detrimental’.

Alicia, who recently released her new album Alicia, said: ‘My mother always overworked. Women tend to overwork because we know that we have to get everything done all the time and be responsible for the outcome… 

‘But I also just have such a drive and such a desire to do great things. And it’s wonderful, but it’s also detrimental.’

'Justice': The 15-time Grammy Award-winning musician, 39, who also took part in a photoshoot and cover for the magazine, added that she's not sure 'how long we can go without any justice' (pictured in 2019)

‘Justice’: The 15-time Grammy Award-winning musician, 39, who also took part in a photoshoot and cover for the magazine, added that she’s not sure ‘how long we can go without any justice’ (pictured in 2019) 

Alicia added that she now has ‘bravery’ and ‘confidence’ to say or feel how she wants to do so.

She said: ‘At the very beginning, I had zero confidence. I mean, I had the confidence that I thought I had. But most of that was kind of put on just to survive the situation.’ 

‘[True confidence, though?] When you really can feel comfortable and grounded and like you belong somewhere? That took until much later…

‘The confidence, I think, increased, and also the bravery to stick to what I wanted to say or to feel how I feel and just get it out there.’

Last week, Kentucky’s Jefferson County Circuit Judge Annie O’Connell announced the grand jury’s decision to charge former detective Brett Hankison with three counts of wanton endangerment in connection to the police raid on the night of March 13.

The first-degree charge, a Class D felony which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison, relates to Hankinson shooting into the neighbouring apartments during the incident, not Taylor’s death.

Campaign: Alicia, who created the Do You Know What Happened To Breonna Taylor? video campaign in June with Taylor's mother, artist Rapsody and childhood friend Tamika Mallory, has discussed the handling of the case with GQ Hype (pictured in January)

Campaign: Alicia, who created the Do You Know What Happened To Breonna Taylor? video campaign in June with Taylor’s mother, artist Rapsody and childhood friend Tamika Mallory, has discussed the handling of the case with GQ Hype (pictured in January) 

Hankinson was fired by the Louisville Metro Police Department in June after officials said he violated policy by ‘wantonly and blindly’ firing his gun during the raid.

Sgt Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, who were also present at the time of the fatal operation, were not charged. Neither the grand jury nor the presiding judge elaborated on the charges.

State Attorney General Daniel Cameron addressed the long-awaited decision shortly after the announcement in a news conference in Frankfort.

He gave a detailed account of the months-long investigation into the events leading up to deadly shooting, which he said had been pieced together by ballistics reports, 911 calls, and witness interviews, due to the lack of bodycam footage.

But Cameron, who is the state’s first Black attorney general, said that the officers were not charged because they acted in self-defence after Taylor’s boyfriend fired at them.

‘I certainly understand the pain that has been brought about by the tragic loss of Miss Taylor. I understand that as an attorney general … I understand that as a black man,’ Cameron told reporters.

‘This team, myself, and the representatives of the Attorney General’s office have taken a lot of criticism and scrutiny. But that scrutiny in many ways was misplaced because there was not a day that people in this office didn’t go to sleep thinking about this case.

‘Criminal law is not meant to respond to every sorrow and grief, and that is true here. But my heart breaks for the loss of Miss Taylor,’ the AG said.

Investigators believe Cosgrove was responsible for firing the bullet that took Taylor’s life. Taylor was shot at least five times after officers barged into her apartment while acting on a search warrant for a drug investigation.

Her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, opened fire when police burst in, hitting Mattingly. Walker was charged with attempted murder of a police officer, but prosecutors later dropped the charge.

Walker had told police he heard knocking but didn’t know who was coming into the home and fired in self-defence.

Cameron said Cosgrove and Mattingly were not charged after investigators determined their actions were justified because Walker opened fire.

Warrant: Breonna and her boyfriend Kenneth Walker had been sleeping in bed when the officers served the warrant at around 1am

Warrant: Breonna and her boyfriend Kenneth Walker had been sleeping in bed when the officers served the warrant at around 1am 

‘According to Kentucky law, the use of force by (Officers Jonathan) Mattingly and (Myles) Cosgrove was justified to protect themselves,’ he said. ‘This justification bars us from pursuing criminal charges in Miss Breonna Taylor’s death.’

The three officers did not take part in the obtaining of the warrant, he said.

The raid had been widely reported by the media as a ‘no-knock’ warrant however, further investigations later proved the cops had knocked before entering.

Walker had also told investigators he did hear knocking, but maintained the cops had not identify themselves as police.

They knocked on Taylor’s apartment door and announced their presence outside, which Cameron said was corroborated by a neighbour who witnessed the arrival.

Getting no answer, Cameron said police officers ‘breached the door’ and gained entry into the apartment.

Pictured: State Attorney General Daniel Cameron addressed the long-awaited decision shortly after the announcement in a news conference in Frankfort (pictured on September 13)

Pictured: State Attorney General Daniel Cameron addressed the long-awaited decision shortly after the announcement in a news conference in Frankfort (pictured on September 13) 

Mattingly entered first, and at the end of a corridor saw Taylor and with Walker who was pointing a gun.

Walker fired, injuring Mattingly in the thigh. Mattingly returned fire, and his colleagues began shooting soon after, Cameron said. Hankison fired 10 bullets, Cameron said.

Six bullets hit Taylor, though there is no ‘conclusive’ evidence that any came from Hankinson’s gun, Cameron said. Bullets fired by Hankison travelled into a neighbouring apartment.

Taylor, 26, was killed shortly after midnight on March 13 when three plainclothes officers used a battering ram to force their way in to her Louisville home with a so-called no knock warrant.

Fearing intruders, her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired a gun. The three officers fired their guns, striking Taylor five times.

Cameron, a Black Republican, has said his investigation into Taylor’s death is ongoing, but has declined to confirm media reports that he is convening a grand jury to vote on whether to bring criminal charges against the officers. 

Earlier this month, the city of Louisville agreed to pay Taylor’s family a record-breaking $12million in a wrongful death lawsuit that her mother Tamika Palmer filed against the city and its police department back in April. 

'Self-defence': Cameron, who is the state's first Black attorney general, said that the officers were not charged because they acted in self-defence after Taylor's boyfriend fired at them (pictured is a memorial for the late EMT, in Louisville, KY, earlier this month)

‘Self-defence’: Cameron, who is the state’s first Black attorney general, said that the officers were not charged because they acted in self-defence after Taylor’s boyfriend fired at them (pictured is a memorial for the late EMT, in Louisville, KY, earlier this month) 

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