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Officials Say Man Killed In Louisville After Protesters Fire On Police, National Guard

The Kentucky State Police is investigating a man’s death after protesters exchanged gunfire with police and National Guard officers in Louisville.
Gov. Andy Beshear announced the investigation on Monday after the man was killed earlier that morning. Beshear did not name the victim, though local reports and social media posts identify the dead man David McAtee, the owner of a popular barbecue joint, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
“Last night at around 12 a.m., it is our understanding that the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) and the Kentucky National Guard were dispatched to 26th and Broadway. While working to disperse a crowd, LMPD and National Guard returned fire resulting in a death. Given the seriousness of the situation, I have authorized the Kentucky State Police to independently investigate the event,” Beshear said.
LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said the incident took place just after midnight as officers began breaking up a crowd of people in a grocery store parking lot. Police have not yet identified the civilians who allegedly shot at law enforcement or know if McAtee was one of the shooters.
“Officers and soldiers began to clear the lot and at some point were shot at,” Conrad said on Monday. “Both LMPD and National Guard members returned fire.”
“We are collecting video from the incident and expect to release what we have some time today,” Conrad said.
Louisville is under a 9 p.m. curfew since the outbreak of violent riots over the death of Breonna Taylor. Taylor was a black emergency medical technician who was shot and killed in her home in March after police broke down her door while searching her home as part of a larger narcotics investigation.
David McAtee was not a protester, according to WLKY news anchor Stephon Dingle. McAtee is the owner of a barbecue joint and was not part of any protest over Taylor’s death but was just hanging out in the parking lot. The lot has been a popular spot for locals to gather outside of the curfew, witnesses told Dingle.
Breshear met with McAtee’s family on Monday. It is unclear what was shared.
Fascinating image as @louisvillemayor arrives at the scene and walks with police escort to comfort the family of David McAtee, shot to death outside his business by law enforcement this morning. This as residents yell expletives calling the move political and saving face. @ WLKY
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Protests over Taylor’s death coincided with the protests and riots in Minneapolis over the death of George Floyd. Taylor was shot eight times after police officers busted down the door to her home and exchanged gunfire with her boyfriend Kenneth Walker, who said that officers never announced themselves before breaking in. The police officers contest Walker’s claim and say they knocked several times and announced themselves before storming the house.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and LMPD Training Division Commander Maj. Paul Humphrey denounced the wave of violence that has gripped the city and said Sunday that the protests over Taylor’s death have devolved into “riots.” The mayor has instituted a curfew and called in the National Guard to curb the violence.

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