The killing of Rayshard Brooks, a 27-year-old Black man, late on Friday outside a fast food restaurant in the US city of Atlanta has triggered protests and forced the city’s police chief to resign.
Police were called to the Wendy’s restaurant after a complaint that Brooks had fallen asleep in his car while waiting in line outside the restaurant, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), which has opened an inquiry into the shooting, said on Saturday.
The GBI said Brooks failed a sobriety test and police attempted to take him into custody. A struggle between Brooks and the officers over a police taser followed.
The GBI initially reported that the father of four, who had celebrated the birthday of his eight-year-old daughter earlier on Friday, was shot during the struggle.
It later said that a review of CCTV footage showed that Brooks “obtained one of the officer’s tasers and began to flee from the scene”.
“Officers pursued Brooks on foot and during the chase, Brooks turned and pointed the taser at the officer. The officer fired his weapon, striking Brooks.”
The investigators said they were also checking video shot by witnesses. Unverified video of the incident shared on social media showed shots fired after Brooks ran away from the scene of the struggle.
Brooks was transported to a local hospital where he died after surgery, the GBI said. One officer was treated for an injury sustained during the incident.
Body-camera footage released
Atlanta’s police department on Sunday released body-camera footage of the moments leading up to the fatal shooting.
The body-camera footage from officers Garrett Rolfe and Devin Brosnan shows both officers approaching Brooks in his car, which had been parked in the Wendy’s drive-through lane, and asking him to move his car.
The officers then question Brooks, before performing a series of inebriation tests, including a breathalyser test.
Following the tests, the officers attempted to handcuff Brooks, leading to a scuffle which led to Brooks being hit with a taser, and then shot.
Hours after the shooting, Erika Shields, the city’s police chief, resigned, Atlanta’s Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced on Saturday.
On Saturday, protesters shut down a major highway, the Interstate 75 in Atlanta. The Wendy’s restaurant outside of which Brooks was shot dead was also burned down by angry protesters.
Officer Rolfe has been fired and Officer Bronsan placed on administrative duty.