LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Eight days before the Breonna Taylor shooting, LMPD’s interim chief wrote that he was “intimately” familiar with the novel police squad which served the warrants the night she was killed. The Place Based Investigations Squad, or PBI, was in its infancy at the time, modeled after the PIVOT concept in Cincinnati.
PBI’s first case was investigating Taylor’s ex-boyfriend Jamarcus Glover who lived on Elliott Avenue. That investigation led detectives to serve the warrants on Taylor herself the night of her fatal shooting.
On Feb. 28, 2020, two weeks before Taylor’s death, WAVE 3 News Troubleshooters learned of a meeting involving several city agencies and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer explaining the PBI Squad, how they operate, and who was in charge. Some of those agencies included the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office, Develop Louisville, and LG&E, and MSD.
Chief Robert Schroeder wrote in an email dated March 5 in response to the meeting, “Being on the inside of the team, I am intimately familiar with the project. While I understand there was some resistance in later sessions, my session felt like the room was buzzing with an enthusiastic response.”
At the time, the only investigation the PBI group was on was Glover’s, and it is unclear what specific information about the investigation Schroeder knew at the time.
Attorneys for Taylor’s family believe PBI was tasked to investigate Glover by Mayor Fischer’s administration in order to acquire the home he lived in to make room for a real estate development in west Louisville. That’s a claim Fischer has repeatedly denied, along with the suggestion that members of his team had talks with LMPD about clearing out Elliott Avenue.
Documents obtained exclusively by WAVE 3 News, specifically regarding the Elliott Avenue Project, showed the Office of Community Development was in contact with LMPD and Placed Based Investigations. Those documents were dated November of 2019.
WAVE 3 News also learned through open records requests that a non-profit called Keeping It Real, Inc. was brought on in November of 2018 to work on Elliott Avenue with the city. According to those records, they received a $110,000 grant to get the ball rolling on the project. The founder of that group, Reverend Anthony Stillwell, wrote that he spent time talking to people in the neighborhood about what they want to see there. He envisioned Elliott Avenue as a place for all residents, regardless of income or age.
The reports submitted by Stillwell also describe him reaching out to the University of Kentucky to be part of the project and come up with renderings for it.