DA expects decision on charges against cop involved in Rayshard Brooks killing soon
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said that a decision will be made 'sometime around Wednesday'
A decision will be made this week about whether charges will be brought against the officer involved in the death of Rayshard Brooks, the unarmed Black man killed in Atlanta.
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard told CNN’s Fredericka Whitfield Sunday that a decision will be made “sometime around Wednesday” after he was fatally shot Friday night at a Wendy’s in Atlanta. In his opinion, the 27-year-old had not posed any immediate danger to Garrett Rolfe, the officer who killed Brooks.
READ MORE: Rayshard Brooks family attorney says cops waited 2 minutes before checking for pulse
Police spokesman Carlos Campos confirmed that Rolfe, hired in 2013, was fired shortly after the killing. The other officer, Devin Brosnan, was placed on administrative duty and has been in the department since 2018.
“(Brooks) did not seem to present any kind of threat to anyone, and so the fact that it would escalate to his death just seems unreasonable,” DA Paul Howard said.
“If that shot was fired for some reason other than to save that officer’s life or prevent injury to him or others, then that shooting is not justified under the law.”
Fired Atlanta officer Garrett Rolf said after shooting #RayshardBrooks “I got him” according to Fulton County, GA. D.A Paul Howard on CNN. Decision on charges “likely by Wednesday”. He can face murder or felony murder according to D.A Howard. pic.twitter.com/6N0moCDFZ9
— Arantxa Loizaga (@arantxaloizaga) June 14, 2020
Murder, felony murder, or voluntary manslaughter are some of the possible charges that Rolfe faces in response to the Friday killing.
The comments from Howard echo that of Mayor Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. On Saturday, a day after Brooks died, she spoke out against the use of deadly force.
“While there may be debate as to whether this was an appropriate use of deadly force, I firmly believe that there is a distinction between what you can do and what you should do,” Bottoms said.
READ MORE: Prominent Atlanta leaders react to the police shooting of Rayshard Brooks
According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Brooks was shot after he ran away from two officers who attempted to detain him. The police were called on him after employees of the fast-food restaurant alleged that a man was asleep in the drive-thru, blocking other cars. After administering a sobriety test, the police proceeded to arrest the motorist after he failed.
As seen in the video of the arrest, a skirmish between Brooks and officers took place for nearly half a minute.
“He’s got my f—ing Taser,” an officer said, according to the body camera footage.
Brooks managed to break free from the officers and is then shown running. He has then tased. As Brooks continued to run away, three gunshots were fired into his back. Brooks was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital but died during surgery. The video was captured by a citizen in a car of Wendy’s parking lot.
Brooks left behind four children, three daughters, and one step-son. He was planning to celebrate the birthday of his eldest daughter on Saturday. His family, through their lawyer, said that he did not have to die and there was no reason for him to be shot.
“If the officer had been a bit more empathetic and a bit less scared, we probably wouldn’t have a dead client,” L. Chris Stewart, the family attorney said.
Stewart also alleged in a press conference that the white officers did not check Brooks’ pulse until 2 minutes after shooting the 27-year-old in the back. The officers instead opted to pick up their shell casings, first, before checking to check on Brooks’ condition, according to information Stewart said he gathered from witnesses.
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