Metro Louisville

Former Louisville Metro Police Department Officer Kelly Goodlett appeared virtually in federal court Friday for charges related to Breonna Taylor’s killing. 

Goodlett faces one count of conspiracy for allegedly working alongside a former LMPD detective to falsify the warrant application for Taylor’s home and fabricating reports to cover it up after the deadly raid. The maximum penalties she could face are five years in prison, a fine of $250,000 and a $100 special assessment — a fine that’s imposed on people convicted of federal crimes.

The U.S. Department of Justice charged her on information, which means a grand jury didn’t indict Goodlett. 

While she hasn’t yet, Goodlett’s attorney said she intends to plead guilty at a plea hearing Aug. 22. 

Federal prosecutors decided against detaining Goodlett throughout the legal proceedings. However, Regina Edwards, a federal magistrate judge with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky, imposed some conditions on her freedom.

“One is that the defendant should surrender a passport. There has to be no contact with co-defendants. And there’s to be no possession of firearms — and that means no firearms in the home in which you reside,” Edwards said.

According to Goodlett’s attorney, Brandon Marshall, her husband is a law enforcement officer, required to keep service weapons in close proximity and stored at home. He proposed an alternative to the restriction. 

“The family has a gun safe with an electronic-style combination lock, and that combination can be changed,” Marshall said. “What we would propose to the court as a potentially suitable condition would be for the husband to personally alter and update the combination to a number that only he knows.”

Edwards and federal prosecutors agreed to the change. The judge also set a $10,000 bond, should Goodlett violate any condition of her release.

The U.S. Probation Office is responsible for monitoring Goodlett and conducting routine check-ins, at its discretion.  

Last week grand juries indicted three other current and former officers for their roles in Taylor’s death. The officer whose shots resulted in Taylor’s death faces no charges.

Brett Hankison faces charges for two civil rights violations in relation to his alleged use of unjustified and unconstitutional excessive force during the raid when firing his gun through a covered window and glass door.

Joshua Jaynes is charged with conspiracy alongside Goodlett. He and Kyle Meany also face obstruction and civil rights violations charges for knowingly using and signing-off on the falsified search warrant application for Taylor’s home and for allegedly lying to investigators and FBI agents. 

They’ve all pleaded not guilty and have jury trials scheduled in October. 

Goodlett resigned from the police department late last week after Chief Erika Shields initiated the process to terminate her and Meany. He’ll have the opportunity to contest his firing at a private meeting with Shields on the afternoon of Wednesday, Aug. 17. Meany’s police powers will remain suspended until then. 

What’s still ongoing and separate from last week’s indictments and charges is the DOJ investigation into LMPD, which started in April, 2021. Federal officials are looking into whether the police department has a “pattern or practice” of using excessive force and violating constitutional rights. They’re also reviewing all details related to the Breonna Taylor killing, including before and after the incident. It’s unclear exactly when the investigation outcome will be available, but an announcement is expected any day. 

Since the deadly raid of Taylor’s home more than two years ago, Louisville Metro has banned no-knock warrants — and the police department has expanded body camera requirements

But just last month, police shot and injured a man while executing an arrest warrant at a crowded event. This showed what experts say are similar levels of recklessness and public endangerment

 

Yasmine Jumaa is WFPL’s race and equity reporter.