The Police Merit Board will hear the appeal of the officer fired for securing the search warrant for Breonna Taylor’s apartment with inaccurate information in June.
Former Interim Chief Yvette Gentry fired Louisville Metro Police detective Joshua Jaynes in January for violations of department policy for truthfulness and search warrant preparation.
Two other detectives fired in relation to Taylor’s death — Myles Cosgrove and Brett Hankison — have not received dates for their respective appeals hearings.
Thomas Clay, Jaynes’ attorney, anticipated the appeal would take at least three days or as long as a week before the board.
The board set aside June 3-4 and 29-30 for Jaynes’ hearing. Clay objected to the hearing being spread over a month’s time.
“Whether there’s a virtual hearing or an in-person hearing, I want this hearing as soon as possible,” Clay said. “I don’t think it’s appropriate to split the hearing up, particularly when you’re doing it over a period of about a month. I think it ought to be done on continuous days.”
Neither board chairwoman Brenda Harral nor board attorney Mark Dobbins could recall any previous hearing lasting as long as five days.
The board has yet to decide if its upcoming meetings will be in-person or held virtually due to COVID-19 precautions. Clay has previously said he’d prefer an in-person hearing for Jaynes, as has Cosgrove’s attorney Scott Miller.
Merit Board personnel have tentatively identified the state fairgrounds as a location for in-person hearings, but concerns remain about security and potential crowd size given the public interest in Jaynes’ and Cosgrove’s appeals.
Police Merit Board meetings are subject to the state’s Open Meetings Act and therefore must be open to the public. While the board has been meeting via video call, the meetings have been streamed on its Facebook page.
Cosgrove’s appeal date is scheduled to be set at the board’s next meeting on May 19.
Hankison’s hearing will not be set until his criminal case for three counts of wanton endangerment for Taylor’s neighbors is resolved. He has pleaded not guilty and his trial is set for Aug. 31 in Jefferson County.
No one is currently facing charges for Taylor’s death.
LMPD Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly was shot in the breezeway outside Breonna Taylor’s apartment. An attorney for Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, said photos show there was no indication of blood in the area.
Jaynes and Cosgrove were both fired by Gentry in January, and Hankison was fired by the previous interim chief, Robert Schroeder, in June.
In an affidavit he swore to a judge, Jaynes wrote that he “verified through a US Postal Inspector that Jamarcus Glover has been receiving packages at 3003 Springfield Drive #4.”
But investigative records show Louisville police were told before the March 13 raid that no packages “suspicious or otherwise” had been delivered to Taylor’s residence in the months leading to the warrant execution.
An investigative report, previously reported by The Courier-Journal, showed another officer, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly asked Shively police to inquire with the U.S. postal inspector about Taylor’s address and Glover.
Jaynes told LMPD investigators last May he “could have worded a little bit differently there.”
Cosgrove, who the FBI concluded fired the fatal shot, was fired for violating the department’s use-of-force policy. Gentry wrote that he “did not identify a specific target” when he fired 16 rounds into Taylor’s apartment.
Hankison was fired for shooting 10 rounds “blindly” into Taylor’s apartment and an adjacent unit.
The board is tasked with reviewing police applicants and setting rules around promotions, qualifications and discipline for officers. It can also review the chief’s disciplinary decisions, determining whether the action was “unjustified or unsupported by proper evidence.”
Per state law, the merit board has five members who serve four-year terms and are appointed by the mayor and approved by Louisville Metro Council. In discipline cases, two police officers elected by LMPD to two-year terms serve as additional members of the board, with voting powers.