Det. Brett Hankison was informed in a letter signed by the the police chief that his employment with the department “is terminated,” effective immediately.
“I find your conduct a shock to the conscience,” Police Chief Robert Schroeder wrote in the letter. “I am alarmed and stunned you used deadly force in this fashion.”
CNN reached out to Hankison and his attorney for comment but has not heard back.
Protests against police brutality that erupted after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis last month have, in Louisville, largely centered on Taylor’s death.
Hankison violated standard operating procedure when his “actions displayed an extreme indifference to the value of human life” when he “wantonly and blindly fired ten (10) rounds” into Taylor’s apartment, Schroeder wrote in the letter.
Some of the rounds Hankison fired went into an apartment next door, “endangering the three lives in that apartment,” Schroeder wrote.
“The result of your action seriously impedes the Department’s goal of providing the citizens of our city with the most professional law enforcement agency possible,” he wrote. “I cannot tolerate this type of conduct by any member of the Louisville Metro Police Department. Your conduct demands your termination.”
Lonita Baker, an attorney for Taylor’s family, said Friday that the family was “excited to get this news and are encouraged by it.”
“This is just one step though,” Baker added. “We’re waiting for the other officers to be held accountable and for additional charges to be filed but this is a step in the right direction.”
Baker said on Friday that Breonna’s mother “enjoyed getting this bit of news.”
Both letters said Hankison was disciplined in January 2019 for reckless conduct that injured an “innocent person,” without giving details.
The officers were carrying out a search warrant in a narcotics investigation when they entered Taylor’s apartment just before 1 a.m. on March 13, according to the police department.
The no-knock warrant issued by police included Taylor’s house because, according to a police affidavit for a search warrant for the raid, which was obtained by CNN, authorities suspected a man involved in a drug ring was receiving packages of drugs at her home.
On May 21, the FBI’s Louisville office announced it was opening an investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death.
Also in late May, the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department said it would require all sworn officers to wear body cameras.