Atlanta Police Hold Sick-Out to Protest Officer’s Murder Charge
Jun 19 2020
"We have enough resources to maintain operations & remain able to respond to incidents". "Please don't hesitate to call if you have an emergency", the department tweeted Thursday.
On Wednesday, Mr Howard announced a murder charge against Rolfe and an aggravated assault charge against a second officer, Devin Brosnan, who the district attorney said stood on Mr Brooks' shoulder as he struggled for his life.
Despite the city's denial, Vince Champion, the southeast regional director of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers, presented a different account: He got calls throughout the night saying officers were calling out and walking off their shift.
"What they realized is that the city, meaning the mayor and the police department, does not support them", Champion said.
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, who has issued orders calling for reforms in policing, also insisted that the department would be able to operate effectively despite the callouts and said numerous department's partner agencies had been notified in case they needed to call in others. She also said: "If we have officers that don't want bad officers weeded out of the force, then that's another conversation we need to have".
Floyd's death set off peaceful and violent protests around the world against racism and what the demonstrators said was disproportionate use of force against black men by white police officers in the United States.
A funeral for Brooks will be held Tuesday at Atlanta's storied Ebenezer Baptist Church, where civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. preached.
Police were called after Mr Brooks was found asleep at the wheel of his vehicle, blocking the drive-through.
During the incident, Brooks spoke with the two officers for over 40 minutes, and began to struggle when officers attempted to place him in handcuffs.
"They didn't know he only had a taser in his hand", Carlson incorrectly said in response to the clip, before falsely accusing Abrams of manufacturing a fact that has been verified by the Atlanta police as well as the county district attorney.
While Brosnan did not fire his gun, Howard charged him with aggravated assault for allegedly standing on Brooks' body after he was shot and for violating his oath of office by not rendering medical aid immediately after he went down.
"As the video shows, this could have been avoided by just letting him run away, giving him another day", attorney Shean Williams said at a Thursday news conference.
The attorney also said Brooks committed at least five felonies on the police before he was shot.
"It's just what I felt like was going to happen because that's what's been happening lately", he said during the news conference.
Rolfe's lawyers said he feared for his and others' safety and was justified in shooting Brooks.
Rolfe's attorneys said he reacted after he thought he "heard a gunshot and saw a flash in front of him".
Brooks was killed last Friday after failing a field sobriety test and resisting an arrest by two Atlanta officers. The maximum sentence for someone convicted of felony murder is death, but Howard told CNNon Thursday he would not seek capital punishment. He was also charged with 10 other offences punishable by decades behind bars.
"Stacey Abrams, who pretends to be the governor of Florida, despite losing that office, and many other Democratic officeholders tell us that officer Rolfe deserves to face execution because Rayshard Brooks only had a taser", Carlson said, mistakenly identifying Abrams as having run for governor in Florida instead of Georgia. In a press release on Wednesday, the attorneys said Brooks took Brosnan's stun gun from him and used it against the officer.