Suspect in Shooting of Two Louisville Police Officers Identified

Louisville Police secure the area after 2 police officers were shot during a protest in Louisville, Kentucky, September 23, 2020. (Lawrence Bryant/Reuters)

The suspect accused of shooting two Louisville, Kentucky police officers during protests Wednesday night has been identified by the Louisville Metro Police Department.

Larynzo Johnson, 26, was arrested Wednesday and has been charged with assault of a police officer and wanton endangerment. He will be arraigned on Friday.

Johnson “intentionally used a handgun to fire multiple bullets at officers” who were at the scene of protests downtown that erupted in response to the state attorney general’s decision to charge only one of the police officers who fatally shot Breonna Taylor. Police said witnesses observed Johnson firing at officers before fleeing the scene, and video of the incident obtained by law enforcement showed him shooting a handgun in the direction of police. Johnson was also in possession of a handgun when he was arrested, the complaint filed in Jefferson County said.

Two Louisville police officers were shot and sustained serious injuries. One of the officers was in surgery Wednesday night.

Earlier on Wednesday, Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s office announced first-degree wanton endangerment charges against one of the officers who shot and killed Taylor, a black 26-year-old emergency medical worker, on March 13. The officer was not charged with murder, and the other two officers involved in the fatal shooting were not charged.

Taylor was shot eight times in her apartment as Louisville police officers executed a search warrant for two men who were known to reside there. The warrant was issued because police suspected that a man connected to a drug ring was receiving packages containing drugs at Taylor’s apartment, but no drugs were found in the raid.

Protesters “set fires, caused property damage and failed to disperse after being warned,” according to the complaint. Demonstrators also looted several businesses and climbed on top of city vehicles, police said. Nearly 100 protesters were arrested during the protests.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer declared a state of emergency on Tuesday “due to the potential for civil unrest” as the city braced for the grand jury decision on charges against the officers. The mayor also implemented a three-day countywide 9p.m. curfew.

Protests also broke out Wednesday night in Atlanta, New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.

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