New Book '12 Seconds in the Dark' Destroys False, Breonna Taylor Narrative

AP Photo/Darron Cummings

On the night of March 13, 2020, Louisville police executed a search warrant on the residence of Breonna Taylor. Approximately one minute after the police first announced themselves six times with “police, we have a warrant!” the door was breached, and Sgt. John Mattingly stepped into a dark threshold. Before setting foot into the eight-plex unit, he saw two figures in a dark and narrow hallway about 25 feet away.


With just the glint of light from a TV and the lights from their handguns’ muzzles, the next thing he saw was a flash from a handgun, and he was struck in a femoral artery. Mattingly went down and he fired his service weapon, while other officers fired at the location from which someone (Kenneth Walker) had just tried to kill Mattingly. Twenty-year-veteran Sgt. Mattingly was bleeding out. His lieutenant grabbed his police vest and dragged him from the doorway. From the moment the door was breached until he was grabbed by his fellow officer totaled 12 seconds.

Mattingly’s newly released book, detailing what really happened on March 13, 2020, is titled: “12 Seconds In The Dark.”

The book begins with Mattingly recounting a “day in his life”: investigating a murder, and then receiving a call about a gunshot fired. He and other officers investigate, not knowing if there’s a shooter waiting in ambush. Not knowing any of that, at the door they still announced themselves as the police.

On the Taylor raid, Mattingly had no “connection” with the people and places named in the warrant. He had volunteered to help serve the warrant. Why, then, after serving “over 2,000” standard warrants, would Mattingly suddenly decide that, on this case which he had no personal investment in, he and six other cops would suddenly breach a door without announcing (as required by the warrant)? One can start with that incongruity.


It won’t surprise anyone that Mattingly’s painstaking review of the facts will not match the hyperbolic, false narrative developed days later, and repeated ad nauseum by celebrities, athletes, and politicians. LeBron James tweeted to his millions of followers on numerous occasions, suggesting that Taylor was murdered by rogue cops on a no-knock warrant. The media cast the cops as cowboys–working on a no-knock warrant–who busted down the door and started shooting, killing Taylor in her bed.

Oprah has an even bigger audience than LeBron James. She continues to refer to Breonna Taylor as an “award-winning EMT.” No, she wasn’t. Taylor was fired as an EMT and placed on the “do not rehire” list. This isn’t “victim shaming;” its simply relaying a fact, as opposed to a lie meant to build a false story.

Our current Vice President literally referred to the cops on that raid as murderers. She’s never retracted that claim.

Those lies, repeated by Oprah and Lebron James, to name just a few, have fueled red-hot hate and subjected Mattingly to constant death threats–including threats to kidnap, torture, and murder his family.

Breonna Taylor’s death was tragic. Mattingly mourns her death, because it was entirely unnecessary and caused completely by her boyfriend shooting a cop; but race-baiting pundits, willing media, and celebrities continue, to this day, to push a false narrative about what happened, and even who Breonna Taylor was.


The bandwagon of lies includes that Kenneth Walker called 911 and reported that he didn’t know who shot Taylor, but leaves out that he called his mother before dialing 911 to tell his mother that that cops were there. It included omissions like claiming that 12 witnesses didn’t hear the cops announce themselves, then failing to report that some of those “witnesses” lived two buildings away, and couldn’t have heard anything. Or that after Taylor had died of her wounds, likely because Walker wouldn’t just surrender, then he obscenely blaming Taylor for firing the shot that struck Mattingly. Or finally, the well heeled, “the cops didn’t find any drugs or money” at Taylor’s apartment canard. That’s true – and only true because when investigators wanted to return to Taylor’s place to execute the search warrant, permission was denied. All of this is detailed on Mattingly’s book.

Mattingly admits that mistakes were made. He regrets waiting a minute and delivering six warnings before the door was breached. But the big, after-the-fact mistakes had nothing to do with him.

I used to try cases as a trial attorney, so I have a fondness of facts. Mattingly’s fact are compelling.  Mattingly paints a clear picture and presents a rock solid case that blows up the common narrative about the death of Breonna Taylor. In short, the common story still told is just a myth.


His book was set to be published by Simon & Schuster, but the publishing house took the coward’s path and backed out.

“12 Seconds In The Dark” is published by the Daily Wire’s new publishing arm. Congratulations to them. Mattingly’s book is well worth the read.



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