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CONTACT: Center for Justice Research
The Center for Justice Research reacts to the lack of police accountability in the death of Breonna Taylor
Houston, Texas (September 26, 2020) – It happened again – a police officer killed a Black person and was not charged for the murder.
More than six months after Breonna Taylor’s death, the Kentucky attorney general announced there were no criminal charges for the officers who killed her while executing a no-knock warrant. Incredulously, wanton endangerment is the only charge doled out in the wake of Ms. Taylor’s death.
“The refusal to hold police officers accountable for shooting and killing Black Americans just like the ones who killed Ms. Breonna Taylor threatens the entire identity of policing in our society,” said Dr. Howard Henderson, founding director of the Center for Justice Research. “When the police are not subject to the same laws as the average citizen, there can be no true justice in America.”
Police departments everywhere swore that last time would be the last time. They implemented body cameras. They focused on de-escalation training. They marched with protestors. Despite all of these policy changes, the police are still killing Black people with impunity. It is clear that policies and training have failed to keep Black communities safe. Until police culture and systemic issues within law enforcement are addressed, police will continue to abuse special privileges at the expense of fragile communities.
“We will continue to fight for police reform until people of all races and backgrounds – Black, Hispanic, Asian, White, Indigenous, poor or wealthy – are treated equitably by law enforcement,” Henderson said. “We will honor Breonna Taylor by doing everything within our abilities to stop as many unnecessary deaths by police as humanly possible.”
MORE ABOUT THE CENTER FOR JUSTICE RESEARCH
The Center, founded in January 2018, is located on Texas Southern’s campus in Houston’s historic Third Ward, the city’s oldest African-American community. Houston has the third-largest criminal justice system in America. CJR offers a pipeline for CJR researchers to investigate and find solutions in a complex criminal justice system.The Center for Justice Research is committed to creating justice reform-oriented solutions for the reduction of mass incarceration by connecting and applying academic thought to practical challenges. As a university-level research center, the Center for Justice Research provides a culturally responsive approach to mass incarceration and to criminal justice reform. Our targeted research advances data-driven solutions by supporting innovation, collecting committed reformers, compelling policy arguments and engendering broad consensus amongst community stakeholders.