Two basketball legends seem to have the same opinion about the Breonna Taylor case — the police were in the right. Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal both claim that Taylor died because her boyfriend shot at the police.
On March 13, Taylor was shot when three Louisville police officers executed a on-knock warrant on Taylor’s apartment that she shared with her boyfriend Kenneth Walker. Believing they were intruders, Walker fired his licensed weapon and gunfire from the officers followed. Taylor, 26, was struck six times and died at the scene.
Barkley and O’Neal are siding with the police despite public outrage and protests across the country.
Kentucky’s Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced last week that a grand jury had not sought criminal charges against the three police officers for their roles in Taylor’s death. Only one officer, Brett Hankison, was charged with “wanton endangerment” for firing his gun into the wall of a neighboring apartment, The Daily Mail reported. Hankison was fired from the department in July. The other cops remain on duty.
During a recent the TNT pregame TV show, Barkley said the police were in the right in shooting Taylor because “her boyfriend shot a cop.”
Barkley said that Taylor’s death couldn’t be compared to the police killing of George Floyd because Taylor’s boyfriend fired at officers first, ABC 6 reported.
“I feel sad that this young lady lost her life. I think the no-knock warrant is something we need to get rid of across the board. But we do have to take into account that her boyfriend shot at the cops and shot a cop,” Barkley said.
O’Neal in 2019 became a deputy in the auxiliary department of Florida’s Broward County Sheriff’s Office, serving as an honorary law enforcement officer. He’s been a reserve police officer or honorary deputy in multiple jurisdictions including Miami Beach, Doral, Golden Beach, the Port of Los Angeles, Tempe, Ariz. and Clayton County, Ga.
He agreed with Barkley and added that the police were simply “doing their job.”
“When you have a warrant signed by the judge, you are doing your job, and I would imagine that you would fire back,” O’Neal said.
Both O’Neal and Barkley were attacked on social media for defending police officers who killed Taylor and blaming her boyfriend.
“Taylor’s BF Kenneth Walker didn’t shoot at cops, he thought their apt was being broken into & as a licensed gun holder shot a warning shot; Evidence strongly suggest the cop shot himself or partners shot him,” Robert Littal BSO @BSO· tweeted.
He added, “Barkley is an entertaining TV personality, but when it comes to race and police brutality his track record is shaky at best. He blamed Eric Garner for his own death and thinks black people are lying about police brutality”.
Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 73: Jamarlin Martin Jamarlin makes the case for why this is a multi-factor rebellion vs. just protests about George Floyd. He discusses the Democratic Party’s sneaky relationship with the police in cities and states under Dem control, and why Joe Biden is a cop and the Steve Jobs of mass incarceration.
Hip-hop star Ice Cube weighed in on Twitter, “America has never been a democracy to Black People, it’s always been a dictatorship. But instead of one dictator, we’ve had to deal with millions of them.”