On Tuesday (Feb. 9), Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr denied a request from Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis to be removed from the case of Rayshard Brooks, a Black man who was fatally shot by a white police officer last summer.
According to The Hill, Carr wrote that Willis’ request did not provide an adequate reason for her office to be “disqualified from these cases by interest or relationship.” Last month, the district attorney cited concerns about the investigation into former Atlanta Police Officers Garrett Rolfe, who is facing multiple charges for Brooks’ death, including felony murder, and Devin Brosnan.
Willis also listed concerns about the actions of her predecessor, former District Attorney Paul Howard. She says he “obtained arrest warrants against the following defendants for incidents that occurred during the campaign.”
“I believe his conduct, including using video evidence in campaign television advertisements, may have violated Georgia Bar Rule 3.8(g),” she continued. “In addition, as you are aware, my predecessor’s conduct also prompted a referral to the GBI for criminal investigation by you his issuance of grand jury subpoenas at a time when no Fulton County Grand Jury was empaneled.”
Willis believes that Howard’s actions “create sufficient question of the appropriateness of this office continuing to handle the investigation and possible prosecution of these cases.”
However, Carr believes that her concerns are only related to Howard and should not affect Willis’ current role as district attorney. “While I understand the concerns that you have raised, those concerns relate to a potential violation of a rule of the State Bar of Georgia by your predecessor and a potential criminal investigation of your predecessor,” the Georgia attorney general wrote. “Both appear fairly obviously to be matters that are personal to your predecessor in office and that do not pertain to you or your office.”