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Dak Prescott joined the chorus of outrage and sadness from athletes responding to a Louisville grand jury’s decision to not charge three officers in the death of Breonna Taylor.
The Dallas Cowboys quarterback addressed the issue during a news conference on Thursday.
“Yeah, that’s disgusting,” Prescott told reporters when asked about the decision. “I don’t understand that one at all. There’s a lot of things in this country that I don’t understand that we’re looking at right now.
“That’s simply unacceptable. Don’t understand an officer not being charged in that case.”
Grand jury exonerates police in Breonna Taylor’s death
A Louisville grand jury indicted former detective Brett Hankison Wednesday on three felony charges of wanton endangerment in the shooting. Those charges are related to Hankison allegedly endangering the safety of three of Taylor’s neighbors when he fired shots into her apartment on March 13.
Detective Myles Cosgrove and Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly were not charged, and no charges were filed in the death of Taylor after officers fired 32 rounds into her apartment while serving a no-knock warrant.
Officers responded after Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired at what he thought was an intruder. Walker told authorities that he asked the officers to identify themselves as they tried to break down the door. He says that when they didn’t, he fired in self defense.
Dak Prescott speaking out more
NFL quarterbacks are notoriously reserved when it comes to social issues in a league that values team over individual more than any other American sports league. That expectation is amplified in Dallas, where team owner Jerry Jones closely guards his franchise’s image as “America’s team.”
Prescott largely toed that line through his first few years in the league, but has spoken out more this year amid the nation’s race reckoning. Thursday’s comments were his starkest yet.
Prescott’s previous statement on police violence
Prescott also spoke out in June in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police. He released a statement in support of protesters, declaring “I am with you.”
He also condemned looting and stated his “utmost respect” for police while pledging $1 million to police departments “to improve our police training and address systematic racism through education and advocacy in our country.”
Change in tone
There was no conciliatory message for police in Prescott’s statement Thursday — only a call for change via the ballot box alongside his initial reaction to the grand jury decision.
“As I continue to say, it’s about us educating ourselves, about us getting registered to vote and going out there and doing that — making sure that we’re educated about who we’re voting for and what they’re going to do while they’re in office,” Prescott continued.
Prescott, who has also spoken out recently advocating for mental health awareness, appears to be finding his voice and is increasingly willing to use it.
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