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Protests Continue In Louisville Over Deaths In Recent Police Shootings

Source: Brett Carlsen / Getty

A Louisville cop will go to jail for two years for excessive force against a protester during racial justice protests in May 2020. The Department of Justice announced Tuesday, Feb. 1, that a federal district court judge sentenced former Louisville Metropolitan Police Department officer Cory P. Evans to two years in prison and two years supervised release.  

“Former officer Evans abused his authority by violently retaliating against a surrendering arrestee who had been exercising his First Amendment rights during a demonstration in Louisville, during the racial justice demonstrations in the spring of 2020,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department will continue to hold accountable officers who violate their oath and the Constitution.” 


According to the Courier-Journal, Evans pleaded guilty last August for the beating of Marty Chester. The latter was among protesters during protests that erupted after the killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. He was charged with depriving an individual’s rights under the color of law.  

During sentencing, Evans’ attorney tried to justify his actions by claiming that Chester was engaging in illegal activity. But the assistant U.S. attorney assigned to the case nipped that line of argument in the bud by noting there was no evidence Chester was in the process of engaging in illegal activity. Evans tried to claim he was under stress and just tired, but that wasn’t enough to get him out of some jail time.

While the Justice Department and FBI praised the Louisiana Metropolitan Police Department’s Public Integrity Unit for its cooperation, there were previous concerns about the unit’s transparency during the investigation into Taylor’s death. Ultimately, none of the officers involved in shooting Taylor were ever held accountable for her killing. Brett Hankison, the officer involved in the shooting incident, will stand trial for felony wanton endangerment for firing into a neighbor’s apartment. 

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News reports indicate that Hankison was previously accused of sexual misconduct. The Public Integrity Unity previously cleared him of wrongdoing, but a woman filed suit against him in November 2020, claiming he assaulted her.

Under the direction of Attorney General Merrick Garland, the Department of Justice launched a pattern or practice investigation into both the Louisville Metro Police Department and the Louisville Metro in April 2021. Such investigations can lead to longer-term interventions with the local police department. 


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Ex-Louisville Cop Gets Jail Time For Excessive Force During 2020 Racial Justice Protests  was originally published on