Trial dates pushed back for former officers federally charged in Breonna Taylor case
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS) — The trial dates for two of the former Louisville Metro Police (LMPD) officers charged in connection with Breonna Taylor’s death have been pushed back, officials said.
Judge Charles Simpson said the original schedule to have fired Det. Joshua Jaynes and fired Sgt. Kyle Meany face a jury on Oct. 11 wasn’t feasible. He made the move to give defense attorneys time to comb through more than 60,000 documents of evidence.
The exact timetable is unclear, though Simpson said setting a trial date now would be “premature.” Instead, he set a status update hearing for Feb. 21, 2023, to check on progress virtually.
Jaynes’ attorney Thomas Clay believes it could be nearly a year or longer before the former officers face a jury.
In federal court Wednesday, defense attorneys said there are more than 300,000 pages of discovery to go through, and prosecutors said hundreds of thousands more could be coming.
They discussed the discovery, saying it included dozens of audio and video recordings, and info from GPS trackers.
“Judge Simpson declared the case to be complex, which we expected given the volume of discovery that’s been produced by the United States,” Clay said. “Given the fact that this case has been delayed so long, we’ll have to wait and see what the sentiments are in this community once the trial date approaches.”
Clay mentioned he wants to move the trial out of Louisville because of the heavy publicity, but said that’ll likely be a discussion with Simpson months down the line when they can make a motion for change of venue.
Meanwhile, delays in the case aren’t what activist Brian Spencer wanted to hear. He said he understands the process can take time but doesn’t want anyone to drag their feet.
“We want it to be right,” Spencer said. “We’re not expecting this to happen overnight, but we do expect them to act with a sense of urgency.”
LMPD fired Meany after the U.S. Department of Justice charged him with deprivation of rights and lying to FBI agents.
Jaynes is also federally charged with depriving Taylor of her constitutional rights and with conspiracy for trying to cover up the false warrant affidavit used to raid Taylor’s home.
Clay says this also means former Det. Kelly Goodlett’s sentencing likely will be moved back as well, considering experts expect her to be a key witness in her former colleagues’ trials. The expectation is her plea agreement conditions are contingent upon her testimony.