Police Videos: Rayshard Brooks Spoke About His Daughter’s Birthday Before He Was Shot
Police body and dash camera videos show two Atlanta police officers having a cordial conversation with Rayshard Brooks in the minutes before the fatal shooting in a Wendy’s parking lot.
At one point, Brooks even told an officer that his daughter’s birthday was the day before.
Police released the videos early Sunday amid heated protests that roiled the city and led to the Wendy’s being burned down late Saturday.
The videos are disturbing, showing how quickly an interaction with police can escalate with little to no warning. Brooks tried to flee when the officers attempted to handcuff him. He fell to the ground, wrestled with the officers and grabbed one of their Tasers. As he fled, Brooks appeared to turn with the Taser and tried to fire it an officer before he was fatally shot, according to the videos.
Police Release Officer Rolfe's Body Camera Video; the Camera Flies Off During the Scuffle (Warning: Viewers May Find Footage Disturbing)
The Atlanta police officer involved in the shooting, Garrett Rolfe, has been fired. Rolfe is 27, the same age Brooks was. A second officer, Officer Devin Brosnan, was placed on administrative duty, pending further investigation.
Brosnan was the first officer to arrive on the scene after police were notified Brooks was asleep in his car in the Wendy’s drive-thru line around 10:30 p.m. Friday. Brosnan knocked on Brooks’ car window to try to wake him up. After Brooks awakened, Brosnan told him to park his car in a nearby spot. Brosnan then radioed for a DUI officer.
Watch Brosnan Approach the Car and His Interaction with Brooks
Rolfe interviews Brooks for about 20 minutes and conducts a field sobriety test. The exchange is amicable.
“My daughter’s birthday was yesterday,” Brooks told him. He said he had been in the area to visit his mother’s grave site.
Watch Rolfe Perform DUI Test
Asked if he would take a breathalyzer, Brooks agreed. “I don’t want to refuse anything,” he said.
He registered a 0.108, above the state legal limit of 0.08. When quizzed about what he had to drink, Brooks said he had maybe one or one-and-a-half drinks. He mentions something about “top shelf” liquor but can’t recall the brand name.
“I think you’ve had too much to drink to be driving, so put your hands behind your back for me,” Rolfe said.
The officers prepared to handcuff Brooks, with Rolfe grabbing his left hand behind his back. At that moment, Brooks tried break free, and the three men tumbled to the ground.
Watch Officer Brosnan's Body Cam Video of Struggle
“Stop fighting! Stop fighting!” one of the officers yelled.
Brosnan pulled his Taser and shouted, “You’re going to get Tased!”
Brooks grabbed for the Taser. “Hands off the Taser,” Brosnan shouted. “Hands off the Taser!”
Brosnan then shouted an expletive that Brooks had the Taser.
As the three continued to wrestle on the ground, Brooks managed to get to his feet with the officer’s Taser still in his hand, and began to flee. Rolfe appeared to discharge his Taser toward Brooks as he ran, with probes and wires flying from the screen left to right.
Watch Dash Cam Video of the Struggle with Brooks
Within seconds, gunshots rang out and Brooks fell to the ground within feet of cars waiting in the drive-thru.
The Fulton County Mecical Examiner's Office determined Brooks died after being struck by two bullets in the back; the autopsy revealed he suffered organ failure and blood loss, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Brooks was a father to three daughters and a stepson, according to the family’s attorneys. Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields resigned Saturday in wake of the shooting.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Fulton County District Attorney's office have launched investigations into the shooting.
GBI Releases Surveillance Video Of Fatal Police Shooting Of Rayshard Brooks