Oprah Winfrey is doing her part to keep attention on the case of Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old EMT worker who was killed on March 13 when three officers from the Louisville Metro Police Department burst into her home on a no-knock search warrant and shot her five times.
NPR reports that the former talk show host has taken out 26 billboards in Louisville, Kentucky, that show Taylor’s image. Winfrey is also calling for justice with the billboards.
The website UntilFreedom.com is shown next to Taylor’s image. The organization describes itself as an “Intersectional social justice organization rooted in the leadership of diverse people of color to address systemic and racial injustice.”
The group has also been a major voice in seeking justice for Taylor, just as Winfrey has.
On the opposite side of the website listing is a quote from Winfrey that says, “If you turn a blind eye to racism, you become an accomplice to it.”
News of the billboards comes shortly after the media mogul had a photo of Taylor on the latest cover of her O, The Oprah Magazine. It was the first time in two decades that Winfrey wasn’t on the cover herself.
Taylor’s apartment was raided on a no-knock search warrant after officers were investigating two men that they thought were selling drugs at a home not even close to her residence.
One of those men was Taylor’s ex-boyfriend, and police believed he was having drugs sent to her apartment, so they were able to secure the no-knock warrant.
Taylor was sleeping in bed with her boyfriend Kenneth Walker when police burst in, and because they didn’t have to identify themselves, Walker believed they were criminal intruders. So he grabbed his firearm and shot one of them in the leg as they were barging in.
The officers responded with heavy gunfire, striking Taylor five times. There were no drugs found at her residence, nor any evidence that it was being used to receive drug packages.
After the raid Walker was charged attempted murder of a police officer, but the charge was dropped in May.
Taylor’s case has certainly received a lot more attention since George Floyd died in Minneapolis, Minnesota, while being arrested by a police officer in May.
Besides Winfrey, celebrities like Beyoncé and Rihanna have called for justice in the Taylor case.
On Tuesday, July 14, Until Freedom led a protest in Louisville, where people marched to Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s home, who’s in charge of the case.
The 34-year-old Black Republican clearly didn’t care for the march, which was evident in a statement that he released afterward.
“We continue with a thorough and fair investigation, and today’s events will not alter our pursuit of the truth,” he said. “The stated goal of today’s protest at my home was to ‘escalate.’ That is not acceptable and only serves to further division and tension within our community.
“Justice is not achieved by trespassing on private property, and it’s not achieved through escalation,” he added. “It’s achieved by examining the facts in an impartial and unbiased manner. That is exactly what we are doing and will continue to do in this investigation.”
Winfrey was one of the celebrities who celebrated Taylor on social media Friday, June 5, which would have been Taylor’s 27th birthday.