On Friday, June 12, 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks was shot and killed by now-former Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe in the parking lot of a Wendy’s drive-thru. Former officer Rolfe was charged with felony murder and 10 other charges in Brooks’ death. The other officer involved in the tragic death of Rayshard Brooks, Devin Brosnan, has been placed on desk duty. Brosnan, 26, was subsequently charged with aggravated assault and violating his oath for standing on Brooks’ shoulder with his boot as Brooks lay dying. Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields announced she would be stepping down the day after the shooting.
On Tuesday, Rolfe appeared in court via video conference to appeal to the judge to release him from jail pending his trial. Judge Jane C. Barwick granted Rolfe bail, telling him he would have to surrender his passport, he would not be allowed to possess or own any firearms, he would wear an ankle monitor, and stick to a 6 PM to 6 AM curfew—medical exceptions not included. Judge Barwick told the court that Rolfe had to refrain from discussing anything with other police officers while awaiting trial. Judge Barwick calculated 11 different bond prices for all of Rolfe’s charges totaling $500,000.
Rolfe was very quickly fired after the shooting and now faces life in prison. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Rolfe was the subject of 13 previous investigations, including a use of force case where he was reprimanded.
Brooks was sleeping in his car, which was reportedly obstructing other cars in the drive-thru. This is why officers Rolfe and Devin Brosnan were called to the scene. Brooks told Rolfe he had a few drinks at his daughter’s birthday party a little while earlier and allegedly failed a sobriety test at the scene. Brooks told the officers he would gladly walk home. No one had seen Brooks driving his car intoxicated, just asleep in a parked vehicle. As Rolfe attempted to arrest Brooks, a struggle ensued and Brooks was Tasered by one of the officers. Brooks grabbed the spent Taser and ran away, turning at one point to seemingly point the Taser at the officers as he ran. It was at this point that Rolfe shot Brooks twice in the back, a third bullet hitting a nearby car with a child inside of it. As Brooks lay dying on the pavement of a Wendy’s parking lot, Rolfe kicked Brooks.
Think about that. You shoot a man in the back two times and then you kick him while he lays dying. According to Judge Barwick, the aggravated assault charge connected to kicking Brooks’ was worth $20,000 in bond.