LeBron James not surprised at Breonna Taylor grand jury decision.

SHOWS: ORLANDO, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES (SEPTEMBER 24, 2020) (NBA - SEE RESTRICTIONS)

1. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LEBRON JAMES SAYING:

"I can't say we were surprised at the verdict, none of us were surprised at it and that's what's even more devastating, that none of us were surprised at what the outcome was."

2. WHITE FLASH

3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LEBRON JAMES SAYING:

"I think at the end of the day respect is to respect. You just look at the history of America and the disrespect that Black women has got for the last 400 years, you can't turn a blind eye to that.

"When I look at my household, seeing my daughter who's five on her way to six, my wife, my mom, rest in peace, my grandmother, so many Black women have done so many things for me and seeing the sacrifices that they made, especially my mom when I was growing up, they were still disrespected along the way, and it's still like that today.

"In the case of obviously Breonna Taylor's case it just showed once again that the walls of the neighbours is more important than her life."

4. WHITE FLASH

5. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LEBRON JAMES SAYING:

"I felt it was important to let Black women know that they're not alone. No matter the disrespect or what they may feel don't stop. Because that's exactly what they want you guys (the press) to do, they want you guys to stop, the want you guys not to be as powerful as you guys are, not as strong as you guys are, as determined as you guys are, they want you all to be at bay."

STORY LeBron James said on Thursday (September 24) that the grand jury decision not to bring homicide charges against officers involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor was no surprise.

Speaking after he had helped the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Denver Nuggets 114-108 to take a 3-1 lead in the Western Conference finals, James expressed his frustration at the verdict.

"I can't say we were surprised at the verdict, none of us were surprised at it and that's what's even more devastating, that none of us were surprised at what the outcome was."

On Tuesday the grand jury decided that none of the three white officers who collectively fired 32 gunshots as they stormed Taylor's apartment would be charged with causing her death.

One of the officers was indicted on charges of endangering Taylor's neighbors with several stray bullets he fired into an adjacent apartment during the ill-fated March 13 raid, carried out as part of a narcotics investigation. The other two officers were not charged at all.

"So many Black women have done so many things for me and seeing the sacrifices that they made, especially my mom when I was growing up, they were still disrespected along the way, and it's still like that today," James added.

"In the case of obviously Breonna Taylor's case it just showed once again that the walls of the neighbours is more important than her life."

Taylor, 26, a Black emergency medical technician and aspiring nurse, was struck by six bullets moments after she and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, were roused from bed in the commotion of the raid. Walker exchanged gunfire with the police.

The grand jury decision, announced by Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, was immediately denounced by civil rights advocates as the latest miscarriage of justice in a U.S. law enforcement system corrupted by racial inequity.

Cameron said there was "no conclusive" evidence that any of the 10 shots fired by former Detective Brett Hankison, the officer indicted on wanton endangerment charges, ever struck Taylor.

His two colleagues, Sergeant Jonathan Mattingly and Detective Myles Cosgrove, used justified force under Kentucky law because they were returning fire - a combined total of 22 rounds - after Walker shot at them first, wounding Mattingly in the thigh, according to Cameron.

Walker has said he fired a warning shot because he feared a criminal intrusion and did not hear police identify themselves.

(Production: Andy Ragg)

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