Seven shot in Louisville, Kentucky, USA, after protests over killing of black woman, police say : International de
Seven people have been shot and at least one is in critical condition after protests in Louisville, Kentucky over the killing of Breonna Taylor, a black woman fatally shot in her apartment in March.
- Breonna Taylor, 26, was shot dead by police inside her apartment in March
- Attention around the case has intensified after her family sued the city’s police department
- About 500 to 600 demonstrators have marched in Kentucky to call for justice
It comes as rioters set alight a police station in Minneapolis after the death of an African-American man George Floyd, who was seen on video gasping for air while a white police officer knelt on his neck.
Ms Taylor, a 26-year-old emergency medical technician, was shot eight times on March 13 after Louisville narcotics detectives knocked down the front door.
No drugs were found in the home.
Louisville Metro Police confirmed in a statement early on Friday (local time there were at least seven shooting victims, at least one of whom was in critical condition.
However, the police said they did not fire any shots in the incident but had made some arrests. They had earlier tweeted that there was a large crowd in the downtown area around 2nd street.
“No officers discharged their service weapons,” police spokesman Sergeant Lamont Washington said in an email.
The situation downtown “remains fluid and continues to evolve,” Sergeant Washington told Reuters in an emailed statement.
Earlier in the night, about 500 to 600 demonstrators marched through the Kentucky city’s streets.
The protests stretched for more than six hours, ending in the early hours of Friday as rain poured down.
Late on Thursday, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer shared a post on Twitter which he said was written on behalf of Ms Taylor’s mother, urging protesters to be peaceful.
“Understandably, emotions are high,” he said in the tweet.
“As Breonna’s mother says let’s be peaceful as we work toward truth and justice.”
Mr Fischer also tweeted a video that he said was a message from Ms Taylor’s family.
“Louisville, thank you so much for saying Breonna’s name tonight. We are not going to stop until we get justice,” a woman says in the video.
“But we should stop tonight before people get hurt. Please go home, be safe and be ready to keep fighting.”
Attention on Ms Taylor’s death has intensified after her family sued the police department earlier this month.
The case has attracted national headlines alongside the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery, a black jogger, in a Georgia neighbourhood in February.
Meanwhile, live video from downtown Louisville around 12:30am showed some protesters behind makeshift wooden barricades, which appeared to be made out of picnic tables spray-painted with the words “You can’t kill us all.”
A small fire inside a garbage bin was visible in the middle of the street.
Police in body armour and face shields held batons and lined up around Louisville City Hall.
They appeared to fire rubber bullets and deploy tear gas canisters, fogging the air and inducing coughs among the remaining members of the crowd.
Protesters were shown filming police with their mobile phones.
Kentuckians are still under social distancing mandates driven by the coronavirus pandemic. Many protesters wore masks.
Chants early on Friday included “No justice, no peace” and “Whose streets? Our streets.”