FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) -- Gov. Andy Beshear says he spoke with President Trump on Wednesday night after two Louisville Metro Police officers were wounded during protests that followed the grand jury decision not to indict two of the three LMPD officers who fired shots during the Breonna Taylor incident.
Taylor, a Black emergency medical worker, was shot several times by white officers after one of them was fired upon and wounded in the leg by her boyfriend, while police were conducting a raid during a March drug investigation. No drugs were found.
During a Thursday press briefing at the Capitol, Beshear said the President initiated the call and described the conversation to reporters.
“His comments were that it appeared we had things under control,” Beshear said. “He did make an offer that if at a later point we needed additional assistance, he would provide it. But he stated, and I agreed, that at this time we have appropriate levels of law enforcement or peacekeepers there and that, if necessary, we have the ability on the state level to increase that support. It was a good call and I appreciate him making it.”
President Trump also had a message for the family of Breonna Taylor, when asked by reporters in Washington on Thursday afternoon. “I think it’s a sad thing, and I give my regards to the family of Breonna. I also think it’s so sad what’s happening with everything about that case, including law enforcement. So many people suffering, so many people needlessly suffering. But with respect to Breonna, we give our regards to the family.”
The governor said he was able to speak on the phone Wednesday night to one of the LMPD officers who were shot, Maj. Aubrey Gregory, who has been released from the hospital. “He was surrounded by family and friends. He is going to have a full recovery, at least to my knowledge.”
He says he did not speak to the other LMPD officer, Robinson Desroches. “He is stable and recovering. I talked to his mom during a period when they were still working to ensure his stability.”
As for the Wednesday night shooting itself, Beshear said, “I want to condemn this act of violence in the most stark terms. It is absolutely wrong. The answer to violence can never be more violence. We want to make sure that these individuals that were out there last night and will be out there again tonight are safe, and we need to ensure that any type of activity or demonstrations remain nonviolent and peaceful.”
The governor said 745 new cases of the coronavirus were reported to state officials on Thursday. 107 of them were from children ages 18 and younger, 20 of whom were children ages 5 and under. The youngest was just 6 days old. This brings the total to 64,158 cases in Kentucky,
“Again, it seems like we are seeing a larger and larger and larger portion of positive cases being our young people,” he remarked.
There were also 13 more deaths on Thursday, raising the total to 1,137 Kentuckians lost to the virus. They include a 97-year-old woman from Bell County; an 86-year-old woman from Christian County; a 96-year-old woman from Fayette County; two women, ages 90 and 97, from Jefferson County; an 82-year-old man from Perry County; and four women, ages 62, 84, 89 and 94, and three men, ages 69, 87 and 88, all from Warren County.
“It’s a hard number for any given day; 13 individuals,” Beshear said. “And one here was a friend of mine from northern Kentucky, who I just learned about an hour and a half ago, had passed away after a multi-month battle with COVID-19,”
As of Thursday, there have been more than 1.3 million coronavirus tests performed in Kentucky. The positivity rate was 4.57 percent, down from Wednesday’s 4.62 percent, and at least 11,570 Kentuckians have recovered from the virus.
Johns Hopkins University reported on Thursday that there have been more than 32 million cases of the coronavirus reported worldwide, along with nearly 980,000 deaths. In the U.S., confirmed cases now stand at more than 6.9 million, with 202,563 deaths.
Read about other key updates, actions, and information from the Beshear administration on the response to the pandemic at kycovid19.ky.gov.
The governor’s next scheduled press briefing will be Monday at 4 p.m and will be live-streamed on his Facebook page and YouTube channel.