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‘I didn’t want Breonna to lose her life’: Fired LMPD officer in Breonna Taylor case, Joshua Jaynes, insists he never lied

Published: Jul. 1, 2021 at 9:25 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 1, 2021 at 11:14 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The officer fired for untruthfulness in relation to the warrant affidavit for Breonna Taylor’s home says he did not lie to obtain it.

Joshua Jaynes was hoping the Louisville Police Merit Board would reverse the former LMPD chief’s decision to fire him for one line he wrote in the warrant. The board heard days of testimony from Jaynes in which he insisted the information he wrote on the warrant was true.

The board upheld former LMPD Chief Yvette Gentry’s termination of Jaynes on Wednesday.

>> FULL COVERAGE: The Breonna Taylor case

“My entire career is being judged on that one line (of the warrant),” Jaynes told WAVE 3 News in an exclusive interview Thursday.

Jaynes said he and a group of other detectives on the LMPD Place Based Investigations Unit (PBI) worked the narcotics case on Taylor’s ex-boyfriend, Jamarcus Glover, for months.

“That binder was two inches thick,” Jaynes said.

Jaynes wrote on the affidavit that, “affiant verified through a US Postal Inspector that Jamarcus Glover has been receiving packages at 3003 Springfield Drive #4.”

Taylor’s apartment was at that address.

Jaynes contended he did verify the information about Glover through Sgt. Jon Mattingly, who actually made the call, but because he didn’t include Mattingly’s name on the warrant, the statement was deemed untruthful by Gentry.

It’s a line that will haunt Jaynes, especially given the price he said his family, including his young children, have paid. Jaynes has received threats and was forced to flee from his home.

“I don’t worry about myself as much as I do my family,” he said. “As a husband and a father, I have a duty to protect them and when this started going on, I knew we had to leave that house.”

Jaynes said he hasn’t been able to find a job due to potential employers’ fears of backlash.

When he heard the board’s decision Wednesday, Jaynes recalled being stunned.

“Just to hear that,” Jaynes said, “it was like none other.”

Janey said he believes he’s being used as a political scapegoat so that city officials can say they fired the officers involved in the Breonna Taylor case. His contention is that the department fired him erroneously because he did not intentionally lie in the warrant and believed the information he provided was accurate.

He pointed to the letter of termination from Gentry herself where she wrote, “I acknowledge that you believe you prepared the warrant in good faith.”

According to Jaynes’s attorney, Thomas Clay, the department’s policy dictates untruthfulness must be an intentional act meant to deceive.

During the hearings this week, Clay presented two points that he said demonstrated Gentry fired him using flawed logic and a lack of information. For example, Gentry testified she was not aware of a key witness’ interview where she said she heard Mattingly tell Jaynes that he’d verified that packages were going to Taylor’s home. Gentry said she’d read the entire file, but did not read the statements by that witness, Kelly Goodlett. Goodlett had given the same statement to not only the department’s own investigators but also the FBI and the attorney general’s office.

Clay also argued Gentry was under the impression Jaynes knew the information was incorrect based on a text message conversation. However, Clay was able to prove that the conversation Gentry relied on happened one month after the warrant had already been executed.

The city’s attorneys claimed Jaynes should have indicated he was not the one who personally verified the information as written in the warrant.

Clay refuted that argument with the “Collective Knowledge Doctrine” which he explained allows an officer to rely on the information of another as his own.

Jaynes says he is going to appeal the board’s decision to the Jefferson County Circuit Court to clear his name.

He said he could have never imagined the outcome of the Glover investigation and the impact it would have on the city, his family, and that of Breonna Taylor’s.

“I didn’t want for any of this to happen,” Jaynes said. “I didn’t want Breonna to lose her life.”

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