On Saturday (June 13), T.I. hit the streets with protesters, calling for justice for Rayshard Brooks. Brooks was a 27-year-old black man that was shot by a former police officer at a Wendy’s drive-thru in Atlanta over the weekend.
While speaking into a megaphone, the ATL actor expressed his frustrations pertaining to Brooks’ death. “The man didn’t deserve to die like that,” Tip explained. “We are going to have to organize. We’re going to have to demonstrate but we are going to have to do it with purpose. And when I say purpose, I mean direction. We’ve got to go where we need to go and do what we need to do in those areas.”
He added, “Everybody needs to choose what it is you need to do, pick your purpose and operate with purpose and direction. And if you don’t do it in the name of Tip, do it in the name of Rayshard and all the rest of the people who died at the hands of the police. Love and respect. Rest in peace to Rayshard. Peace and love to everybody who deserves it.”
A few hours after T.I.’s empowering address, news surfaced that the former officer who shot Brooks, Robert Golfe, was terminated from the department. The other cop involved in the incident, Devin Brosnan, was placed on administrative leave. Mayor Keshia Lance Bottoms also revealed that Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields resigned following the aftermath.
“For more than two decades, I have served alongside some of the finest women and men in the Atlanta Police Department,” Shields said in a statement. “Out of a deep and abiding love for this city and this department, I offered to step aside as police chief. APD has my full support, and Mayor Bottoms has my support on the future direction of this department.”