Louisville man fatally shot in protest, suspect in custody

Louisville man fatally shot in protest, suspect in custody

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – A suspect was arrested in the death of a Kentucky man who was fatally shot in a protest in Louisville over the murder of Breonna Taylor, police said on Sunday.

The suspect was hospitalized and interviewed by homicide investigators, said Louisville police chief of police Robert Schroeder at a news conference. The person’s name was not released immediately.

Police discussed with prosecutors about the criminal charges to be filed, Schroeder said

27-year-old Louisville-born Tyler Charles Gerth died after being shot in Jefferson Square Park in downtown Louisville, authorities said.

In a video of the footage shown at the press conference, the suspect was surrounded by several people before shots were fired and people sought cover. Schroeder said the suspect had participated in the protests from the beginning and had been arrested several times.

“He had been repeatedly asked by other members of the park for his destructive behavior,” said Schroeder.

Another social media video later showed that at least one person was bleeding profusely on the floor.

The shooting was at least second during nearly a month of protests in Louisville over Taylor’s death. Seven people were injured on May 28 when gunfire broke out near City Hall, prompting Taylor’s mother to make a statement asking people to demand justice “without hurting each other.”

Taylor, a 26-year-old black woman, was murdered at her home in Louisville in March by police who conducted a search warrant. Demonstrators have called for the officers involved in her death to be charged. One of the officers was recently fired.

Several dozen people gathered in the park on Sunday. A few Louisville police officers arrived to hand out flyers saying camping and cooking were prohibited at the site at night, but protesters could continue collecting during the day. Police removed tents from the site and told protesters to pick them up at a separate location.

John Kriner knelt on the spot for nearly 30 minutes to pray for peace. He said it was his first visit.

“I just want there to be peace,” said Kriner.

For weeks, the park was the epicenter of protests in Louisville after the police murders of Taylor and George Floyd, who died last month at the hands of Minneapolis police.

Taylor’s friend, Kenneth Walker, was originally charged with attempted murder after firing a shot at one of the officers who entered the house. Walker has said he thought he was defending from an intruder.

The search warrant that allows police to enter without first announcing their presence was recently banned by the Louisville Metro Council.

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Associated Press Writer John Raby in Charleston, West Virginia contributed to this report.

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