Garrett Rolfe
Garrett Rolfe

The former Atlanta police officer who fatally shot Rayshard Brooks as he ran away with the officer’s Taser outside of a Wendy’s restaurant has been charged with murder.

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard announced that Garrett Rolfe, who was immediately fired after the killing of the 27-year-old Brooks, faces 11 criminal charges, including felony murder.

If convicted, Rolfe could face the death penalty or life in prison without parole.

The swift move toward justice comes just days after Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms immediately denounced the shooting of Brooks, replacing the police chief and firing the officers involved.

Howard, speaking to reporters Wednesday, said Brooks never displayed any “aggressive behavior” toward the officers during the nearly 42-minute exchange with officers.

Howard said the officers failed to provide “timely” medical attention to Brooks after he was shot and that Rolfe kicked Brooks as he was lying on the ground, “fighting for his life,” CBS News reported.

The second officer at the scene, Devin Brosnan, faces three charges, including aggravated assault for standing or stepping on Brooks’ shoulder after he was shot, Howard said, adding that Brosnan is willing to become a witness for the state and testify against Rolfe.

On June 12, Rolfe and Brosnan arrived at a Wendy’s drive-thru at about 10:30 p.m. because Brooks had fallen asleep in his vehicle. Police said Brooks failed a sobriety test and struggled with police when they tried to cuff him.

Brooks wrestled a Taser away from an officer, ran from the officers and at one point aimed the Taser at police before Rolfe fired his weapon, authorities said, according to CBS News.

Brooks died after undergoing surgery at a nearby hospital.

An autopsy from the county medical examiner said Brooks suffered two gunshot wounds to his back and listed his cause of death as a homicide. Rolfe was fired from the department the following day and Brosnan was placed on administrative duty.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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