Protests, chaos continues to grip Atlanta in wake of Rayshard Brooks’ death
UPDATED 9:35 AM PT — Sunday, June 14, 2020
Atlanta, Georgia was up in arms Sunday morning following the fatal shooting of a black man at the hands of a police officer. The Atlanta Police Department confirmed Garrett Rolfe, the officer at the center of the incident, has been fired, while the second officer involved, Devin Brosnan, has been put on administrative leave.
The news came after Rolfe shot 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks Friday night in a Wendy’s restaurant parking lot.
Two officers were called to the parking lot, where it appeared Brooks was asleep behind the wheel and blocking traffic in the drive-thru. Surveillance and body cam footage showed Rolfe speaking with Brooks before performing a sobriety test.
A struggle between Brooks and the officers ensued when they attempted to place him in cuffs for allegedly being over the legal limit. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Brooks grabbed a Taser from one of the officers before attempting to run away.
“At that point, the Atlanta officer reaches down, retrieves his weapon from his holster, discharges it, strikes Mr. Brooks there on the parking lot and he goes down. That information has been corroborated by a witness that we have interviewed, that’s information we have at this point. I will tell you again that that’s what it appears, looking at the Wendy’s surveillance video, to the naked eye.” – Vic Reynolds, Director of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation releases surveillance footage from an Atlanta Wendy’s showing the moment Rayshard Brooks was fatally shot by an officer: pic.twitter.com/ndS5aTiRd2
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) June 13, 2020
The city’s mayor and a lawyer for the Brooks family claimed there was no justification for the use of deadly force in this case.
“In Georgia, a Taser is not a deadly weapon. That’s the law, that’s what the cops are trained to do. It’s not a deadly weapon. I’ve had cases where officers have used Tasers on victims and they argue with us in court that Tasers aren’t deadly, that Tasers aren’t harmful. That’s the case law here, that Tasers are not deadly weapons. So before we even hear from their lawyers, who are going to say the same old thing they always say, you cannot have it both ways. You can’t say he ran off with a weapon that could kill somebody when you say it’s not deadly.” – Chris Stewart, attorney for the family of Rayshard Brooks
Violence and unrest over Brooks’ death has since erupted across the city. Protesters have blocked an interstate and set fire to the Wendy’s where the shooting took place.
An investigation into the incident is underway and the information gathered will be passed on to the Fulton County District Attorney’s office for review.