BG Freedom Walkers protest Republican Women’s Club of SOKY dinner guest

The event was set to have governor candidate Ryan Quarles, as well as author and former Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly speak.
Published: Jan. 17, 2023 at 11:22 PM EST
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - It was March 13, 2020 when Breonna Taylor was shot and killed in a no-knock warrant search, leading to protests throughout the country.

Those protests continued as former Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly, who was involved in the raid on Taylor’s home, was set to speak at an event hosted by the Republican Women’s Club of South Central Kentucky.

“It doesn’t have anything to do with parties, it’s about human rights, about spreading love and peace,” said BG Freedom Walkers Founder Karika Nelson. “We just had Martin Luther King Jr’s honor day yesterday. Today, we’re in the streets, trying to keep a young African Americans name alive, that was murdered by a white officer.”

The club has since postponed the event, and has released a statement on the matter, saying:

“In order to protect our freedoms of speech and due process, we are committed to providing peaceful forums to present information and opinions by knowledgeable parties regarding issues and events of our day.”

The Freedom Walkers, however, are looking for a bit more

“I felt like Mattingly had his time in court. That was his platform to say what he needed to say,” said BG Freedom Walkers President, Summer Shannon. “He was given freedom of speech, I don’t think he deserves any other platforms and he definitely doesn’t deserve to profit off murdering an innocent black woman.”

“I do think an apology to the community would be something that should be done,” said BG Freedom Walkers member, William Compton. “Just doing things that would help women and not to promote someone who’s murdered them.”

There’s no report at this time on when the event will be rescheduled, or if Mattingly will be in attendance, but the BG Freedom walkers say if he is, they’ll be there too.

The event was also going to include guest speaker and gubernatorial candidate, Ryan Quarles. Quarles sent a statement to WBKO, saying he canceled plans to attend.

Quarles said that he was, “invited independently of other speakers, and due to the controversial nature of another speaker at this event, decided to reschedule to a later date”

Ryan Dearbone, President of the local chapter of the NAACP, also denounced the event saying:

“We are deeply troubled by reports that a local organization is hosting a meeting with one of the individuals who were a part of the no-knock warrant shooting that caused the death of Breonna Taylor.”

Dearbone added that this was not a matter of politics, but of human life.