Attorney General Daniel Cameron filed a motion in Jefferson Circuit Court on Wednesday to keep the proceedings and testimony in the Breonna Taylor case from being made public by allowing a grand juror to be interviewed.
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron had until Wednesday to respond to an anonymous grand juror who wants to speak freely about the Breonna Taylor case.
A judge made the ruling in court Monday in response to a motion filed last week by the unnamed grand juror asking to speak freely about the proceedings.
The motion was filed in the case of Anonymous Grand Juror #1 v. Commonwealth of Kentucky.
Cameron argues in his motion that the proceedings and testimony before a Grand Jury are required by law to remain secret. The motion also points out that the anonymous grand juror does not seek to limit the scope of his or her disclosures. This type of broad and unchecked disclosure could jeopardize not only witnesses and other grand jurors but also set a dangerous legal precedent for future grand juries, Cameron said.
“As I’ve stated prior, I have no concerns with a grand juror sharing their thoughts or opinions about me and my office’s involvement in the matter involving the death of Ms. Breonna Taylor,” said Attorney General Cameron. “However, I have concerns with a grand juror seeking to make anonymous and unlimited disclosures about the grand jury proceedings. The grand jury process is secretive for a reason, to protect the safety and anonymity of all the grand jurors, witnesses, and innocent persons involved in the proceedings. Allowing this disclosure would irreversibly alter Kentucky’s legal system by making it difficult for prosecutors and the public to have confidence in the secrecy of the grand jury process going forward.”
The Attorney General’s motion notes that the case filed by Anonymous Grand Juror #1 is similar to a case filed by a grand juror following a 2014 police-involved shooting resulting in the death of Mr. Michael Brown. That case, Doe v. McCulloch, was initiated by a member of the St. Louis County grand jury in the case. The court rejected the grand juror’s request to “completely invalidat[e] Missouri’s grand jury secrecy laws as applied to her[.]”
The Kentucky Commonwealth’s Attorneys' Association released a statement that says in part:
“Individual dissatisfaction with a grand jury proceeding, or with another grand juror, or with the prosecutor’s comments or legal interpretation are not compelling reasons to set aside the rules of grand jury secrecy.”