The Atlanta police officers involved in the fatal encounter with Rayshard Brooks, a Black man, against the backdrop of citywide protests over George Floyd’s murder, won’t face any charges related to his death.
Officers Devin Brosnan and Garrett Rolfe will no longer face the combined 14 charges for fatally shooting Brooks, 27, in front of an Atlanta Wendy’s on June 12, 2020, Georgia special prosecutor Pete Skandalakis announced Tuesday.
An investigation into the shooting found the officers were justified in their actions because Brooks took a Taser from Brosnan and fired it at Rolfe, giving the cop no other option.
“Brosnan and Rolfe committed no crimes,” Skandalakis said during Tuesday’s press conference. “The use of deadly force was objectively reasonable and they did not act with criminal intent.”
On the night of the shooting, Brooks reportedly fell asleep in a Wendy’s drive-thru line. When police responded to the scene, they conducted a sobriety test, which showed Brooks was not fit to drive.
As Brosnan and Rolfe tried to arrest Brooks on a DUI charge, a struggle ensued. Brooks punched Brosnan and grabbed his Taser then fired it at them. He ran from the officers while still aiming the Taser at them before Rolfe drew his gun and fired twice, killing Brooks.
Brooks’ death stirred even more outrage in Atlanta, which was already seeing weeks of daily protests over the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Georgia’s own Ahmaud Arbery earlier that year.
The Atlanta Police Department’s chief at the time, Erika Shields, stepped down from her post as a result of Brooks’ shooting. City Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms fired Rolfe, though he was reinstated by the city’s Civil Service Board the following year.
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