Fulton County, Georgia District Attorney Paul Howard, Jr. announces charges in Rayshard Brooks case.
The Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe, fired after the killing of Rayshard Brooks last week, now faces 11 charges including felony murder, which could lead to death penalty, a Georgia district attorney announced Wednesday.
A second officer, Devin Brosnan, is facing three charges, including aggravated assault, said a Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard Jr. at a news conference.
During the announcement, Howard said that Brosnan had agreed to give a statement against Rolfe and become a “state’s witness” — but Brosnan’s attorneys later disputed that claim.
Brooks was shot and killed outside a Wendy’s restaurant where he’d apparently fallen asleep in his car in the drive-thru lane. He allegedly failed a field sobriety test — and ultimately was seen wrestling with the officers and running with one of their Tasers leading up to the shooting.
Brosnan’s attorneys said he suffered a concussion when Brooks knocked him to the ground during the scuffle.
“We’ve concluded, at the time Mr. Brooks was shot, that he did not pose an immediate threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or officers,” Howard said at the news conference Wednesday.
Brooks, 27, was seen running across the parking lot with a bright object in his hand, which the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said was the stolen Taser, as an officer chased him, also carrying what appeared to be a Taser.
The Atlanta Police Department fired Rolfe and reassigned Brosnan following the incident. The city’s police chief also offered her resignation..
A lawyer for Brooks’ widow who spoke at Howard’s press conference said “Even in dark times like this, you have to try and see the light,” he said. “And, the positivity of this situation is the courageousness of Officer Brosnan to step forward and say what happened was wrong. It is officers like that who change policing.”