LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) — The suspect in Friday’s shooting of a Kentucky State Trooper made his first appearance in court Monday. LeeQuan Taylor, 21, is facing multiple felony charges after allegedly leading authorities on a six-hour manhunt before finally surrendering to officers.
Taylor is charged with:
- Attempted murder of a police officer
- Possession of a handgun by a convicted felon
- Assault, 1st degree
Each charge carries a penalty of at least 10 years, except for the attempted murder of a police officer, which has a minimum sentence of 20 years. Judge Charles Kuster, who is presiding over the case, said it is possible prior charges could impact the final penalty sentenced under a guilty verdict.
Taylor, who appeared for a video arraignment, said he did not have an attorney and asked the court to appoint a public defender. Kuster entered a “not guilty” plea on Taylor’s charges upon the appointment of a public defender.
Cynthiana’s police chief said this is the first officer-involved shooting incident that has happened in the two years he’s spent leading the department.
- KSP trooper shot multiple times in Cynthiana, suspect
- KSP trooper involved in shooting released from hospital
- What we know about the KSP trooper shooting
- LeeQuan Taylor’s bond set at $1M
“This wakes you up, it wakes everybody, it wakes everybody in law enforcement up,” Chief Doug Robinson told FOX 56. Robinson said one of his officers was with a Wildlife & Fisheries officer when they overheard the shots fired, before an assistance call shortly went out to officers. He said the trooper was found responsive and with nearby witnesses trying to give help. Robinson said as more officers responded, their focus was on getting medical assistance and did not know what led to incident.
“We didn’t know the circumstances around it, and of course, our focus was on getting that trooper to safety,” he said.
At least six shots were fired at the trooper, three were caught by the trooper’s bulletproof vest, and two others hit pieces of equipment. Robinson said the only bullet that hit the trooper struck him in his shoulder.
“He did walk on his own, well with some assistance into the ER, he’s a tough young man,” Robinson said.
Robinson commended the community for the outpour of support towards the trooper and mentioned there are efforts happening even in his own church to get meals to the trooper’s family.
“When it happens close to home, everybody feels it, not just this community. Everybody in law enforcement feels that. Everyone that’s married to a law enforcement officer feels that,” Robinson said.