Can Police Be Charged for Lying in Search Warrants?

by | Aug 24, 2022 | Firm News

Can a police officer be charged with lying in a search warrant? The answer, from a federal grand jury in Kentucky who reviewed the Breonna Taylor shooting case, is YES. A former Louisville, Kentucky detective, Kelly Goodlett, plans to plead guilty to federal charges for helping falsify a search warrant that led to a botched raid at Ms. Taylor’s apartment. Ms. Goodlett will plead guilty to a federal conspiracy charge for agreeing to falsely state that a fellow detective had verified that the target of a narcotics investigation received packages at Ms. Taylor’s apartment. This led to detectives obtaining a search warrant for apartment, and later executing it, which resulted in the untimely shotting of Ms. Taylor. The decision to prosecute officers for lying to obtain a search warrant is very unusual because officers are rarely prosecuted for lying. Instead, they typically face administrative disciplinary proceeding within their own department. The decision to prosecute the officers in this case sets a very strong example for other state and federal law enforcement agents to follow.