Families wait for nearly 90 protesters to get released from jail

Activist group Until Freedom provides legal representation to those arrested

Families wait for nearly 90 protesters to get released from jail

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - From local supporters to reality stars, nearly 90 people were arrested for protesting in the front yard of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s newly-purchased home Tuesday afternoon.

Until Freedom organized Tuesday’s protest. Its organizers said the group came to Louisville to teach and support protesters. Tuesday’s protest started with a group planning meeting and ended with 87 people arrested.

Protesters marched to Cameron’s home after 4 p.m., then settled in on his lawn. Cameron’s office is investigating Breonna Taylor’s case. Taylor was shot and killed by LMPD narcotics officers while they attempted to execute a search warrant at her home on March 13. One officer has been fired since the shooting.

Louisville Metro Police officers arrested 87 people in a Tuesday demonstration, LMPD Sgt. Lamont Washington confirmed, after they refused to leave Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s yard.
Louisville Metro Police officers arrested 87 people in a Tuesday demonstration, LMPD Sgt. Lamont Washington confirmed, after they refused to leave Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s yard. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

Protesters claim there has been no movement in the investigation, and no steps taken by officials to charge the officers involved. Cameron has said there is no deadline for the investigation and has asked the public to be patient. Protesters told WAVE 3 News other states have changed regulations and held police accountable for other officer-involved deaths. Protesters said they feel they’ve waited long enough, and want accountability for what happened to Taylor.

Until Freedom organizers said they came to Louisville because protesters have done all they can do. Organizers and protesters said they prepared for and expected arrests.

Michelle and Ed Pennix sat with dozens of people outside Louisville’s jail overnight and into the day Wednesday, waiting for the release of the 87 protesters, including their 18-year-old daughter Grace Pennix.

“We just have to keep the momentum going,” Michelle Pennix said. “The fact that our daughter could be part of that (Tuesday) makes us very proud of her.”

The Pennixes said their daughter has been participating in protests for months and said they know getting arrested is part of the risk. They said they’d been waiting for their daughter’s release since 6 p.m. Tuesday. Releases on Wednesday were slow. Individuals or small groups were released every few hours.

“We know when you stand for right, everything else will fall in line,” Michelle Pennix said. High-profile, civil rights attorney Lee Merritt has worked with the families of Ahmaud Arbery and Botham Jean and is now in Louisville representing some of Tuesday’s protesters.

“I’m confident that minus corruption those charges will be dropped,” Merritt said. “They should never have been filed in the first place. Protesters, peaceful protesters without incident, shouldn’t have been charged with a felony.”

Merritt said the arrests show that Cameron knows how to use the law and arrest when crimes are committed.

“They know how to make arrests when crimes take place so this should be a demonstrative for Mr. Cameron about what exactly needs to be done to the killers of Breonna Taylor,” Merritt said.

Until Freedom said it was planning to wait outside the jail until every protester is released. The Pennixes said they were told their daughter was expected to be released late Wednesday afternoon.

“Of course we’re going to be happy (when) she’s out,” Grace’s father Ed said.

“Then we get right back to it,” Michelle Pennix said. “On to the next one.”

Until Freedom provided legal representation for each protester. The organization said it is not done in Louisville and is planning more actions.

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