Beyoncé leads tributes to late Breonna Taylor on her birthday: “Happy heavenly birthday”

Taylor was shot dead by police in a raid on her home in March 2020

The likes of Beyoncé and Michella Obama led tributes to the late Breonna Taylor over the weekend on what would have been her 28th birthday.

Taylor was shot and killed by officers during a botched raid on her home in Kentucky in March 2020. Last September, Kentucky’s Attorney General Daniel Cameron failed to charge the police officers who fatally shot her.

A Kentucky grand jury indicted former detective Brett Hankison, who was charged with three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment relating to gunfire which entered a neighbouring apartment [via BBC News].

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But the other officers John Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, the latter of whom fired the shot that killed Taylor, were not charged.

Taylor would have turned 28 last Saturday (June 5), which prompted an outpouring of tributes online.

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Posting on her official website, Beyoncé wrote: “Happy Heavenly Birthday Breonna Taylor”, alongside a photo of Taylor as a child.

Obama, meanwhile, said she was “thinking” of Taylor and shared an artwork by artist Amy Sherald.

Other tributes came from actress Viola Davis, who wrote: “Happy heavenly birthday Breonna!! We will never forget. We will always keep fighting.”

Numerous artists also made statements calling for justice for Taylor in the immediate aftermath of her death. These include Beyoncéwho penned an open letter to the Kentucky Attorney General, and The Weeknd, who called for justice for Taylor and Jacob Blake in his acceptance speeches at the MTV VMAs 2020.

In June, Rihanna wrote on Instagram that Taylor’s “killers are at home watching Netflix on the couch. WTF is America?!” 

Earlier that month, on Taylor’s 2020 birthday of June 5, artists including Solange, Selena Gomez and Megan Thee Stallion made renewed calls for justice.

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