Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard Jr. announced Wednesday that former Atlanta Police Officer Garrett Rolfe faces felony charges in the fatal shooting of Rayshard Brooks.
According to WSBTV, Rolfe faces “11 counts including felony murder and aggravated assault, criminal damage to property, and violations to his oath of office.” Howard is recommending no bond for the officer, citing his choice not to provide medical assistance for over two minutes and for kicking Brooks on the ground after the fatal shooting.
The shooting sparked new demonstrations in Georgia’s capital against police brutality, after occasionally turbulent protests in response to George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis had largely simmered down. Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields resigned less than 24 hours after Brooks died.
ABC News reports that Rolfe and Officer Devin Brosnan responded to calls of a man sleeping in his car Friday night at a Wendy’s restaurant and blocking the drive-thru lane. That man turned out to be 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks, who allegedly blew .108% on a breathalyzer test, above the legal limit of .08%.
Police body camera video shows Brooks and officers having a relatively calm and respectful conversation for more than 40 minutes before things rapidly turned violent. Brooks wrestled with officers, snatched one of their stun guns, and turned and pointed it at one of them as he ran through the parking lot. Rolfe then opened fire.
Attorneys for the police officers say, “When Mr. Brooks turned and pointed an object at Officer Rolfe, any officer would have reasonably believed that he intended to disarm, disable, or seriously injure him.”
However, District Attorney Howard said the taser was fired twice, and Officer Rolfe should have known it could not be fired again after the second shot. “We have also concluded that Rolfe was aware that the Taser in Brooks’ possession, it was fired twice, and once it’s fired twice it presented no danger to him or to any other persons,” he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him at email@example.com. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange