Multiple sources are confirming that large numbers of police officers in the Atlanta Police Department have walked off the job in protest of the charges against Garret Rolfe. Rolfe shot and killed 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks last Friday in a Wendy’s parking lot after Brooks resisted arrest, wrestled with Rolfe and another officer, Devin Brosnan, got control of one of the officers’ taser-weapons and used it on Rolfe as he was attempting to flee the scene.
Rolfe received 11 charges for the incident, including felony murder, and could receive the death penalty if convicted of the murder charge. Brosnan faces 3 charges, including aggravated assault. It’s unclear which aggravated assault was being referred to as the only scuffle that occurred between the men happened when Brooks resisted arrest and began fighting with the officers.
When announcing the charges, Paul Howard, Fulton county’s district attorney suggested that Brosnan would testify against Rolfe in exchange for a lighter sentence. Vince Champion, southeast regional director of the International Brotherhood of Police officers, said that was untrue.
“The attorney for the officer said that’s not true two minutes later, and said he’s not pleading guilty and not offering state’s evidence,” Champion said.
On Wednesday night, there were several reports that Atlanta police officers had walked off the job in protest.
My contacts in the Atlanta Police Department inform me that members from evening shift Zone 4 walked off the job shortly followed by Officers in Zone 3 and 6. The good members of the @Atlanta_Police will not stand for @FultonCountyDA’s activism in place of applying the law. https://t.co/PDWZNgFeXb
— Rob O’Donnell (@odonnell_r) June 17, 2020
Breaking: Sources confirm Atlanta Police officers in zone 6 have walked out. Sources say they drove back to their precinct, turned in their keys and went home. Officers in zone 3 are allegedly doing the same. @CBS46 #ContinuingCoverage #Atlanta #BlueFlu pic.twitter.com/kgLuNwDalP
— shon gables cbs46 (@shongables) June 18, 2020
Officers were responding only to calls of “officer down,” according to reports.
After mass walkouts among members of the Atlanta police department, the mayor began requesting assistance from mutual aid jurisdictions. Officers from these jurisdictions are refusing to respond to any call other than one for an officer down.
— Blue Flu Cernovich (@Cernovich) June 18, 2020
A spokesperson for the APD called the reports of a walkout “inaccurate.” The officers, they said, called out sick. They did not walk off.
“Earlier suggestions that multiple officers from each zone had walked off the job were inaccurate,” the spokesperson said. “However, the department is experiencing a higher than usual number of call-outs with the incoming shift. We have enough resources to maintain operations and remain able to respond to incidents throughout the city.”