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The Wrongful Death Of Rayshard Brooks In Atlanta On June 13, 2020

Updated on June 16, 2020
Perspycacious profile image

Author served in the legal, corrections system in Utah for over eight years, and in private and federal service also, before his retirement.

Ashes to ashes, and dust to dust, leaves the rest of the story untold....

Source

What the video shows a reasonable person....

If you watch the video of the attempted arrest and the shooting of Rayshard Brooks, you can follow what I will present here.

The shooting and death of Brooks was a case of an Atlanta police officer using lethal force that resulted in the fleeing man's death.

At the moment Atlanta officers first confronted Brooks at his car located in the drive-up area of the Wendy's business, he was cooperative. He went with them to an open area of the business' parking lot. He performed their request that he perform a standard sobriety test. He allowed them to do a personal search to verify that he had no weapon, or other dangerous or illegal material they could immediately detect by their search. He agreed to take a breathalyzer test, and he complied with their instructions in taking it.

The test showed that his blood alcohol level was slightly over the legal limit that could allow him to operate a motor vehicle on the city streets. Brooks was made aware of this and was told that he was going to be placed under arrest.

Up to this point Rayshard Brooks had been fully cooperative.

As the officers began to handcuff Brooks, two officers and Brooks ended up on the ground as a struggle started.

In the struggle, one officer took out his Taser in an attempt to immobilize Brooks, and complete the arrest.

Brooks freed himself, grabbed the officer's Taser, and, in addition to resisting arrest, began to flee while chased by the two arresting officers.

What eventually transpired was that Brooks turned on the closest pursuing officer and made a threatening move before continuing to flee. That officer had already drawn his automatic, and shot and killed Brooks with shots the autopsy showed had hit him in the back.

Was the officer's action a case of using excessive force? Surely a court will eventually make that decision following an investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and an internal review by the Atlanta Police Department.

Here is what I believe they will find relevant.

Brooks was in a licensed motor vehicle the police could understandably believe to be his own. The evidence for his arrest had already been collected, as well as other possible charges resulting from his having fallen asleep in the vehicle while waiting to have service he was seeking at that Wendy's.

Not shown in the public videos was any normal request for Brooks to identify himself with his driver's license, and car registration, as standard police procedure would normally have called for.

In any case, the officers' body cameras, and initial dealings with Brooks, plus the motor vehicle, would have given the police enough information to subsequently arrest Brooks, even if he had successfully outrun the police and evaded arrest on the spot.

With their knowledge that Brooks was unarmed, except for the one officer's Taser, the use of deadly force seems to me unjustified.

That the officer was (1) stressed from the struggle and the pursuit, (2) embarrassed that he had lost control of the police Taser he had been issued, and (3) may have felt threatened by Brooks' initial abrupt turn to confront him before continuing to flee, is likely quite true.

In standard training for those who carry a Taser as part of their uniform, trainees are themselves subject to experiencing being shot with a Taser. I have had such training. The experience is normally not life-threatening to a normally healthy person.

Without any other known weapon, and with Brooks still fleeing, what justifiable concern could the pursuing officers have had based on Brooks' behavior?

Any attorney defending the dismissed officer will plead that officer believed he himself might be immobilized, if Brooks successfully Tasered him, and could then take his own weapon and do him and his fellow officer bodily harm that the Taser alone could not do.

What that officer seems to have failed to properly consider was that Brooks could be arrested and charged later. He failed to properly weigh Brooks' potential danger to the public at large, or gave it too much weight at the time.

The result was his ultimate use of lethal force against Rayshard Brooks.

It has been said that "The mills of the gods grind slow, but exceedingly fine."

It will be months before final determinations will be made in this particular case, but they will be made. The Sunday autopsy labeled the shooting as a homicide.

These circumstances will be weighed by everyone involved, including the public at large.

The one thing certain now, is that Brooks will not be alive to tell his own side of the story.



A too often, too final tribute....

Source

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2020 Demas W Jasper

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    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      12 months ago from Fresno CA

      You seem to be fair and balanced in your assessment of the facts. I appreciate you not trying to color people's opinions or influence decisions. It is what it is. All too often.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • Miebakagh57 profile image

      Miebakagh Fiberesima 

      13 months ago from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA.

      But since the shoot killed Brook, it can't be justified in any way. The officer should have shoot him in the leg or arm. Then, only then death that result can be justified. Many thanks.

    • Miebakagh57 profile image

      Miebakagh Fiberesima 

      13 months ago from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA.

      But since the shoot killed Brook, it can't be justified in any way. The officer should have shoot him in the leg or arm. Then, only then death that result can be justified. Many thanks.

    • bhattuc profile image

      Umesh Chandra Bhatt 

      13 months ago from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India

      It is difficult to say whether the police officer did something excessive. He did what he felt prudent under the circumstances. Another thing is by shooting Brooks, a message has gone in public that if you do not cooperate result can be serious. So, officer's action is justified from that perspective.

    • trusouldj profile image

      LaZeric Freeman 

      13 months ago from Hammond

      Fascinating article. Whenever I hear about something like this in the news, I think about watching Buddy Epsen as BARNABY JONES when I was growing up. He always shot the guy in the arm. Dude drops the gun, you make your arrest. Wish it seemed that simple in real life. A lot more people might still be alive. A lot more law enforcement officers might still have their jobs.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      13 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      John, Fortunately we both live in countries where the rule of law is supposed to prevail, enforced by citizens, police, and the courts. Let's hope "liberty and justice for all" is seen to operate in this case.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      13 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Shyron, If an officer is skillful enough to shoot a fleeing felon where he chooses to hit him, why not shoot him in the legs he is using to run away? Those are not lethal shots either.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      13 months ago from Gondwana Land

      Another shocking incident of police over reacting and shooting someone unnecessarily. The only way it will stop is for the officers responsible to be charged with murder/homicide. Thanks for sharing, Demas.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 

      13 months ago from Texas

      Hello Demas, If Mr. Brooks was driving under the influence, it doesn’t matter who the vehicle belong to…it was against the law. The fact that he had the officer’s taser are factors. Then there is the shooting, when an officer faces a criminal and shoots in the right shoulder, that is not to kill. It could have been as Mr. Brookd ran away the officer was thinking as though he was facing him and wanted to shoot him in the right shoulder and instead shot him in the heart from behind.

      Not defending the officer, but it could have happened that way.

      Blessings my friend.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      13 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Eric thinks the man who shot the fatal shots will not be successfully prosecuted, if he is even tried. I believe he will be tried and found guilty of his use of excessive force, but it will be "a squeaker." Thanks to both of you for commenting.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      13 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thorough indeed. Seems like the moronic use of Qualified Immunity wiil let the shooter walk.

    • Miebakagh57 profile image

      Miebakagh Fiberesima 

      13 months ago from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA.

      Thanks for sharing. The police must be careful of using brute force. We are not living in a primitive community of 2000 years ago, like a Roman soldiers.

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