Woman files sexual assault lawsuit against officer charged in Breonna Taylor’s death
One of the officers who killed Breonna Taylor is now being accused of sexual assault, and according to the lawsuit, this isn’t the only time he’s preyed on and sexually harassed or assaulted other women. Brett Hankison, who was fired from the Louisville police force after his involvement in Taylor’s murder, is now facing a sexual assault lawsuit months after a woman came forward with rape allegations against him.
Brett Hankison, the only person charged in the police killing of #BreonnaTaylor, is being sued for sexual assault.
— AJ+ (@ajplus) November 11, 2020
Margo Borders initially shared the story of her assault on Facebook in June, saying that in 2018 when she was 22, a then-42-year-old Hankison, who was working as police security at a bar she frequented, offered to drive her home and since she was inebriated and he was a police officer, she felt safe taking him up on the offer. The Washington Post reports that in the lawsuit, Borders describes how Hankison dropped her off at her home, invited himself inside, and then when she passed out in her bedroom, she says he raped her. “[He] stripped off his clothes and willfully, intentionally, painfully and violently sexually assaulted Margo,” the lawsuit reads. Borders reportedly came to and yelled at him to get off her, at which point he left. Borders says the violent act left her emotionally and physically scarred, her bedsheets covered in blood. Like many victims of sexual violence, Borders didn’t initially she didn’t speak out, fearful that nobody would believe her.
“I never reported him out of fear of retaliation,” Borders wrote in her June Facebook post. “I had no proof of what happened and he had the upper hand because he was a police officer. Who do you call when the person who assaulted you is a police officer? Who were they going to believe? I knew it wouldn’t be me.”
Sadly, Borders isn’t the only one with a Brett Hankison story. Emily Terry shared a similar account on Instagram, describing how Hankison offered her a ride home from a bar. She says he made sexual advances on her in the police car and luckily, Terry was able to get out of the car and run away. The next day her friend reported the behavior to the police, but nothing came of it.
In Borders’s lawsuit, she obtained similar stories of sexual misconduct from eight other women, most of which involved him offering to drive women home outside the same bar. Additionally, Hankison has a history of allegations of sexual abuse, none of which led to disciplinary action with the Louisville Metro Police Department. The lawsuit also states that once he was investigated by LMPD’s Public Integrity Unit for sexual misconduct when he allegedly “demanded sexual favors in exchange for not placing criminal charges” against a woman.
Currently, Hankison is out on bail, awaiting trial for the Taylor case where he is being charged with counts of “wanton endangerment in the first degree,” meaning, he’s been charged with endangering the lives of Taylor’s neighbors. None of the officers involved in the Breonna Taylor shooting faced any charges relating to her actual death.