The Baltimore Ravens organization released a powerful social justice statement on Aug. 27 which listed, among its specific demands, for the police officers involved in the death of Louisville woman Breonna Taylor be arrested and charged.
Statement from the Baltimore Ravens: pic.twitter.com/Q8kOzQ8qAZ— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) August 27, 2020
After a grand jury decision Wednesday to not indict two police officers and charge a third with a crime unrelated to Taylor’s killing, a few Ravens feel justice wasn’t served.
“Personally, it sucks,” safety Chuck Clark said. “As a team, that was one of the first things we put out as our mission statement, to have those cops arrested. To hear the verdict that came down from that, there’s no justice to it. We — and when I say we, not just the Ravens, I’m talking everybody across the country — it’s almost as if we let her down in that situation. For somebody to be in their house sleeping, and for that to happen to them, unarmed, it’s as if we let her down in that situation.”
Taylor was killed in her home in Louisville after three police officers attempted to serve a no-knock police warrant. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, has said he heard no one announce themselves and instead thought intruders were breaking into the home. He says he fired one shot before officers returned fire, killing Taylor.
Wednesday in Louisville, protests broke out after news of the decision. One officer was charged with wanton endangerment, a charge that applies to the risk he put on Taylor's neighbors by recklessly firing his weapon, but does not hold the officer responsible for her death.
As of Thursday morning, the Ravens had not discussed the story as a team. They’re still focused on the Kansas City Chiefs, who are set to come to Baltimore for Monday Night Football next week. Still, it was on the minds of a few players as they went through another week of practice.
Quarterback Lamar Jackson, who attended the University of Louisville, had the tragedy hit a bit closer to home.
"When I got up this morning, I was seeing it on social media of her not getting no justice,” Jackson said. “We got other things in the world that get justice, that don't really need justice. But people want to push that issue a lot more than our Black lives that’s mattering — Breonna Taylor being one of them. It's crazy we never get justice for serious things on our side of the part in America, where it should be freedom of speech, land of the free. I don't really feel like it's being that way for Black people sometimes. That’s what I have to say about that.”