Published on: Monday, April 26, 2021

The Justice Department will launch an investigation into the Louisville Metro Police Department to determine if there is a pattern of discrimination or excessive force within its ranks, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Monday (article available here).

The investigation marks the launch of the second such "pattern or practice" investigation since Garland took over as attorney general and comes more than a year after the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor by Louisville, Ky., police fueled worldwide protests against police violence and racial injustice. Taylor, a 26-year-old Louisville emergency medical technician, was shot and killed in her home in March 2020 by police as they attempted an early-morning narcotics raid on her apartment. She was neither the subject of the warrant nor was the suspect at Taylor's home.

The probe "will determine whether LMPD engages in unconstitutional stops, searches and seizures, as well as whether the department unlawfully executes search warrants on private homes."

Monday's announcement follows the launch of a similar "pattern or practice" investigation of the Minneapolis Police Department last Wednesday. That move came a day after a jury convicted former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin on murder charges for the death of George Floyd.