Rayshard Brooks: what newly released footage of the fatal shooting shows
Atlanta police chief resigns after unarmed black man killed by officer
Atlanta Police have released bodycam and dashcam footage showing the fatal shooting of an unarmed African-American man by an officer from the force on Friday.
Rayshard Brooks, 27, was killed while attempting to flee from two white police officers at a Wendy’s drive-thru in Georgia’s capital. His death has reignited protests in the city following weeks of worldwide demonstrations triggered by the killing of George Floyd in May.
And public anger has been fuelled by videos of last week’s shooting that are being shared by both the authorities and witnesses.
Footage captured on security cameras, police body cameras, dashboard cameras and by bystanders shows that Brooks was “apparently asleep behind the wheel” when he was approached by police officer Devin Brosnan, CNN reports.
Bronson - who was responding to a report of a man sleeping in his car - is seen knocking on the window and then opening the car door, saying: “Hey man, you’re parked in the middle of the drive-thru line here.”
In close-up footage from a body camera worn by the officer, Brooks appears “disoriented and incoherent”, according to the broadcaster.
Brooks eventually moves his car into a nearby parking spot, where Brosnan then asks if he has been drinking. Brooks says he has had one drink and the police officer calls for back-up.
Fellow officer Garrett Rolfe arrives a few minutes later and uses a breathalyser on Brooks.
Rolfe tells Brooks that he believes he has been drinking and goes to handcuff him, but a struggle breaks out when Brooks resists.
A bystander’s video then shows Brooks “running across the parking lot with what appears to be a police Taser in his hand”, The Guardian.
–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––For a round-up of the most important stories from around the world - and a concise, refreshing and balanced take on the week’s news agenda - try The Week magazine. Start your trial subscription today –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Footage from the Wendy’s security cameras shows Brooks “turning as he runs and possibly aiming the Taser at the pursuing officers before one of them fires his gun and Brooks falls”, the newspaper says.
An autopsy conducted on Sunday showed that Brooks died from blood loss and organ injuries caused by two gunshot wounds. The manner of his death was homicide, an investigator for the medical examiner said in a statement.
Brosnan has been placed on administrative duty, while Rolfe, who is believed to have fired three shots at Brooks, has been sacked.
According to CBS News, district attorney Paul Howard has said that three charges could apply against Rolfe: murder, felony murder and aggravated assault.
Atlanta’s police chief, Erika Shields, has also resigned following the killing. “Out of a deep and abiding love for this city and this department, I offered to step aside as police chief,” she said in a statement on Saturday.
Her resignation has done little to quell unrest over Brooks’ death, however. The BBC reports that the Wendy’s where he died was set on fire on Saturday, while on Sunday “more than 100 people turned out in the rain at the site of the shooting for a peaceful protest”.