Georgia Bureau of Investigation ‘Not Consulted on Charges’ Filed Against Former Cop for Killing Rayshard Brooks

This undated photo provided by the Atlanta Police Department shows Officer Garrett Rolfe. Rolfe, who fatally shot Rayshard Brooks in the back after the fleeing man pointed a stun gun in his direction, is going to be charged, announced during a news conference Wednesday, June 17, 2020. Rolfe had already …
Atlanta Police Department via AP

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday stated that it was not consulted on the charges filed by the district attorney regarding former Atlanta Police Officer Garrett Rolfe, who now faces felony charges in the fatal shooting of Rayshard Brooks.

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard Jr. on Wednesday announced charges against Rolfe — “11 counts, including felony murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon,” per USA Today.

Howard stated that Brooks, who attempted to flee the scene while wielding an officer’s taser, was “running away at the time that the shot was fired” and added that he “did not pose an immediate threat of death or serious physical injury.”

However, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which is looking into the incident, said in a statement on Wednesday that it was not aware of the prior press conference, nor was it consulted on the charges filed by the district attorney.

“Despite today’s occurrence, the GBI will complete its mission of completing an impartial and thorough investigation of this incident and we will submit the file, once completed, to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office,” GBO added.

GBI’s full statement:

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was requested by the Atlanta Police Department on Friday night, June 12th, to investigate an officer involved shooting at the Wendy’s Restaurant on University Avenue. We are in the process of conducting this investigation. Although we have made significant progress in the case, we have not completed our work. Our goal in every officer involved shooting case we are requested to review, is to complete a thorough, impartial investigation before we submit the file to the respective District Attorney’s Office.

The GBI was not aware of today’s press conference before it was conducted. We were not consulted on the charges filed by the District Attorney. Despite today’s occurrence, the GBI will complete its mission of completing an impartial and thorough investigation of this incident and we will submit the file, once completed, to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was requested by the Atlanta Police Department on Friday night, June 12th, to…

Posted by Georgia Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Demonstrators blocked major roadways and lit the Wendy’s, where the incident occurred, on fire on Saturday, a day after the fatal shooting occurred.

As GBI detailed, officers responded to complaints of a man sleeping in the drive thru, effectively blocking traffic. Officers spoke with Brooks in what appeared to be a calm conversation. They attempted to take him into custody after he failed a field sobriety test. As surveillance video shows, tensions erupted as Brooks resisted arrest, getting into a scuffle with the officers and ultimately obtaining control of one of their tasers.

“Officers pursued Brooks on foot and during the chase, Brooks turned and pointed the Taser at the officer.  The officer fired his weapon, striking Brooks,” GBI stated.

“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,” Howard said on Wednesday.

Attorneys for the police officers, however, reject Howard’s argument.

“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,” attorneys for the officers said.

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