Metro Council committee passes order to investigate Mayor Fischer administration

Metro Council committee passes order to investigate Mayor Fischer administration

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A Metro Council committee will now be investigating Mayor Fischer and his administration regarding the ongoing protests following the deaths of Breonna Taylor and David McAtee.

The Government Oversight and Audit Committee unanimously voted in favor of an order to investigate Tuesday night. The investigation will look into how what the Fischer administration did or did not do regarding the deaths of Breonna Taylor and David McAtee, as well as the protests and unrest they triggered.

“We need to provide [the community] with the facts,” Donna Purvis, Metro Councilwoman for District 5, said about the committee’s investigation. “We need to provide them with answers no matter what comes out of it. But we owe this to them.”

Council members mentioned the community’s questions regarding the ongoing protests and how it has affected downtown businesses.

According to the order the committee passed, the investigation will:

  • Look at the actions and inactions of Mayor Fischer, his administration, and LMPD leading up to the search warrant execution and shooting death of Taylor.
  • Identify all documents, policies, processes, and practices that were in place in Louisville Metro Government that impacted or described the deaths of Breonna Taylor and David McAtee.
  • Identify any shortcomings in training, police, or control systems that led to the execution of a no-knock warrant at Breonna Taylor’s home and her death.
  • Identify any error or omissions in “following procedures, best practices, and follow-up decisions” made by the administration and LMPD in relation to the deaths of Breonna Taylor and David McAtee.
  • Look at the actions and inaction of the administration and LMPD regarding the protests following Taylor’s death.

“Nonetheless people are demanding answers,” Brent Ackerson, Government Oversight and Audit Committee Chair said. “And these are some of the answers they are going to demand. So the moment the FBI finishes, or the Attorney General finishes their investigation, we are immediately teed up to say ‘give us this stuff now’ versus coming back here in a year and having a debate and a vote and everything else.”

Council members also debated Tuesday night over whether to subpoena anyone. The Government Oversight and Audit Committee has the power to subpoena Metro government employees to testify before the committee under oath.

Several council members expressed their concerns that subpoenaing someone may impede the federal investigations.

"I think subpoenas are really, highly unusual and inappropriate in this circumstance and I hope we don't go that route," Councilman Bill Hollander said.

In the end, the committee decided to not subpoena anyone at this time. Council members agreed they do not want to impede any ongoing investigations. Instead, they decided they will invite interim LMPD Chief Robert Schroeder to speak with them, possibly under oath, at their next meeting in two weeks.

Mayor Fischer responded Tuesday prior to the committee's meeting, saying he sent a letter to the council telling them their requests for documents cannot be honored because of current investigations with the FBI and Attorney General.

Fischer also called the threat of a subpoena unnecessary.

“I’m not clear why Council would need to issue subpoenas, since we have never declined to make Metro employees available for council and committee meetings, nor declined to provide any data that we’re able to provide,” Fischer said in a press release Tuesday. “All Council has to do is ask, and we’ll provide what we are able to release.”

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