/  06.13.2020


A 27-year-old Black man was fatally shot in the back by an Atlanta police officer Friday (June 12) night, CNN reports

Police responded to a call at approximately 10:33 p.m. ET about a man, identified as Atlanta resident Rayshard Brooks, who fell asleep at the drive-thru of fast food restaurant Wendy’s, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said in a statement. 

Once police arrived, Brooks was given a field sobriety test and failed it. The GBI states Brooks resisted arrest, resulting in a tussle with the officers. One officer pulled out his taser and according to witnesses, Brooks allegedly reached for the taser and another officer shot him. It was all captured on video by witnesses at the scene.

“The GBI is aware that there is video posted on social media captured by witnesses in this incident,” a tweet from the GBI reads. “We are reviewing the video & the early investigative information in this case. We’ll provide an update as soon as we can.”

Brooks was then taken to the hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. One officer was also taken to the hospital for an injury but was later released.

The case has been handed over to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, making it GBI’s 48th police shooting the agency has investigated this year. It will be turned over to prosecutors for review once the investigation is complete. 

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard issued a statement Saturday (June 13) afternoon.

“My office has already launched an intense, independent investigation of the incident,” Howard said. “Members of the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office were on scene shortly after the shooting, and we have been in investigative sessions ever since to identify all of the facts and circumstances surrounding this incident.”

The police killing of Brooks comes at a time when the call for major police reform is at an all-time high across the nation following the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, among other victims of fatal excessive force. As trust between the police and the community further deteriorates, people have been calling for more accountability as well as the defunding and demilitarization of police departments. 

Protests have sparked across the world in the fight against police brutality in America, including in Atlanta. There are currently six APD officers facing charges for using excessive force during one of the protests and Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has fired two. 

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