In his first sit-down interview, Breonna Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, opened up about the night that Louisville police officers killed the 26-year-old emergency room technician.
Walker, 27, spoke to CBS This Morning’s Gayle King about the moments leading up to, and following, Taylor’s death. “To the world she’s just a hashtag, a picture and all of that, but to me [she] was much more,” said Walker. “More than a girlfriend too, I think that’s what I want the world to know the most. My best friend, the most important person to me on earth and they took her.”
According to Walker, he and Taylor were in bed watching a movie when Louisville Metro Police officers used a battering ram to burst through Taylor’s apartment door. Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, Myles Cosgrove were identified as the officers who killed Taylor. Walker maintains that they never announced themselves.
Though he admitted to being scared, Walker said that he had to protect Taylor, so he grabbed his legally-owned weapon and fired one shot. “That was the one time I had to use [my gun]. If it was the police at the door and they just said it was the police…me or Breonna didn’t have a reason at all not to open the door.”
Police returned fire, letting off more than 16 shots. “I don’t think I’ve ever herd so many gunshots at the same time. I’ve never been to war, but I assume that’s what war sounds like.”
Walker grabbed Taylor’s hand and pulled her down to the floor to shield her from the gunshots. He then looked over and realized that she was shot. After the bullets subsided, Walker called his mother before dialing 911. In the emergency call, he can be heard saying that someone shot his girlfriend, but he wasn’t sure who it was. Walker pointed out that if he had known police were the shooters, he wouldn’t have called 911. “I wouldn’t have been calling the police on the police, that doesn’t even make sense.”
As he walked outside of the apartment, still unsure of what happened, Louisville police pointed guns in his face. He was arrested and charged with attempted murder, after police claimed that he shot Mattingly. “I was in the back of the car. I got [dragged] all the way down the street, it was cold and wet. I don’t have on any socks and shoes and they were just dragging me. I had scabs on my feet from that.”
Authorities never gave him an update on Taylor’s condition. He learned of her death from watching the news while sitting in a jail cell. The charges against Walker were later dropped and he was released from custody.
“If I didn’t live you probably wouldn’t know about Breonna, or Kenny Walker,” he added. “I don’t want everybody to know about Kenny Walker, long as everybody knows about Breonna Taylor.
“She took care of a lot of people. It’s a lot of people that need her bad right now, including me.”
Watch the full interview below.