“They are an independent body,” Cameron said in an interview. “If you wanted to make an assessment of various charges you could have. But our recommendation was that Mattingly and Cosgrove were justified in their actions and behavior.”
Officers Myles Cosgrove and Jonathan Mattingly were two of the three officers involved in Taylor’s death. Taylor, a lifeguard, was killed in her own home when plainclothes officers carried out a “no knock” order.
Cosgrove and Mattingly were not charged in the case. The third officer, Brett Hankison, was charged with three cases of willful first degree harm.
“Ultimately, our verdict is that the charges, which we were able to prove beyond doubt in court, were willful threats to Mr. Hankison,”
Laura Coates, senior legal analyst at CNN, said it was seldom, if not entirely unknown, that a grand juror would go beyond the statutes presented to them by the prosecutor.
“Usually the grand jury just votes on the statutes that were presented to the grand jury. They don’t go through the criminal code to see if prosecutors can prosecute criminal charges,” Coates said. “They are far more reactive to facts presented to them than they are to criminal laws under which a defendant is charged.”
The bullet that hit Sgt. Mattingly
In his news conference last week, Cameron said the shot was fired by Kenneth Walker, Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, but Walker’s attorney has denied that fact.
“This idea that there was some kind of friendly fire or crossfire that Sgt. Mattingly met is a stupid idea,” Cameron told WDRB on Tuesday.
“Believing this idea suggests that bullets fired from outside the apartment on the side of the apartment unit made a sharp left turn to hit Mattingly to match the entry wound,” he added.
Walker’s attorney Steve Romines told CNN’s Chris Cuomo last week that Walker did not shoot Mattingly in the thigh and that a ballistic report by the Kentucky State Police did not support prosecution claims that the one bullet Walker fired hit Mattingly have.
Cameron says charges must be based on the law and the facts
The law does not give the Attorney General “permission to bring charges that are not based on the law or the facts,” Cameron said.
“Our responsibility in the WG office lies in the truth and the facts. I cannot shape the facts to correspond to a narrative that in many ways was published there before the facts were published there.”
CNN’s Mirna Alsharif contributed to this report.