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Simon & Schuster said it will not distribute an upcoming book by one of the Louisville cops that was involved in the May 2020 raid that left Breonna Taylor dead.
The about-face, reported by the New York Times, comes after calls to boycott the distributor if it didn’t cut ties with the publisher that inked a book deal with Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, 48.
Mattingly is penning “The Fight For Truth: The Inside Story Behind the Breonna Taylor Tragedy,” for Tennessee-based Post Hill Press, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
The book is set to hit shelves by the fall, and Mattingly will not be available for press until then, the newspaper said.
The Courier Journal learned Mattingly was cashing in on the incident when he asked a staff photographer for permission to use a photo from last year’s protests on Tuesday, according to the report.
Post Hill Press focuses on “pop culture, business, self-help, health, current events, Christian, and conservative political books,” according to its website.
News of Mattingly’s book was swiftly met with criticism on social media, that reportedly led to Simon & Schuster’s backing out of the project.
Shannon Coulter, who organizes a boycott campaign with more than 90,000 followers, directly called out Simon & Schuster on Twitter Thursday.
“I notice one of the publishers you distribute, @PostHillPress has given a book deal to one of the guys who fired shots in Breonna Taylor’s apartment. Same guy who sued her boyfriend for “emotional distress.” Will you be distributing this?,” she tweeted.
“Stay focused, y’all,” Democratic state Rep. Attica Scott tweeted. “People love to profit off of Black pain and tragedy. It sells”
Mattingly was shot by Taylor’s boyfriend Kenneth Walker — who had a weapons license and thought the police were intruders — and fired off multiple rounds, one of them hitting the sleeping EMT.
The FBI found Detective Myles Cosgrove fired the fatal shot. He and two other cops were fired from the department in the shooting’s aftermath.
The drug suspects the cops were seeking did not live at the apartment, and no drugs were found at the scene.
A grand jury cleared the officers of criminal charges in connection with Taylor’s death in September, sparking days of protests and unrest across a country grappling with police shootings against black people.
Mattingly has been cleared of wrongdoing by the department, and is the only officer involved to have spoken publicly about the deadly raid.
He sued Walker in October, claiming the bullet wound he suffered in the thigh left caused him “severe trauma,” and was the subject of multiple threats — including at least one which caused his family to flee their home, the newspaper reported.
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