Update: 2245 6/17 Atlanta’s Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms told CNN’s Chris Cuomo that while she did not have the exact number of officers who called out “We do have enough officers to cover us through the night,” she said adding that they have the assistance of the State Police along with neighboring counties. “Our streets won’t be any less safe because of the number of officers who called out. But it is just my hope again that our officers will remember the commitment that they made when they held up their hand and they were sworn in as police officers.”
According to numerous online reports, Atlanta police are ignoring calls for service and are walking off the job in as many as four of Atlanta’s six policing zones following the District Attorney’s decision to charge two police officers involved in Friday’s officer involved shooting death of Rayshard Brooks.
According to numerous online reports, shortly before 6pm June, 17th officers from Atlanta’s zones 3 and 6 have reportedly stopped answering calls for service via radio and walked off the job. According to these reports, shortly after news spread of the walkout, officers from zone 4 and 5 have also walked off the job. Scanner traffic from zone 4 and 6 via broadcastify.com is essentially non-existent.
This walkout comes just hours after Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard announced that former Atlanta Police Officer Garrett Rolfe is facing 11 charges, including felony murder after the shooting death of Rayshard Brooks after a physical altercation when Rolfe and another officer tried to arrest Brooks for driving under the influence after he passed out while behind the wheel at a Wendy’s in Atlanta on Friday night.
According to numerous bodycam, dashcam and witnesses video, after conducting a sobriety test, Rolfe and another Atlanta police officer, Devin Brosnan attempted to handcuff Brooks who then pulled away and began fighting with the police officers. On the videos, Brooks was seen on videos striking the police officers before grabbing one of the officer’s Tasers and fleeing. Officer Rolfe is seen on video chasing Brook, who turned and fired the officer’s Taser at him. Officer Rolfe fired twice, striking Brook in the back.
Officer Brosnan was also charged with three felonies, however the District Attorney said that Brosnan had agreed to be a “state witness” against Rolfe in the earlier press conference. According to Brosnan’s attorney, this is false. Speaking with CNN, Attorney Don Samuel said, “Officer Brosnan has not agreed to testify. He has not agreed to plead guilty. He honestly told the DA’s office everything that happened during a lengthy interview yesterday. He will continue to tell the DA or the GBI, or any other investigator what happened. But he is absolutely not guilty of any crime and will not plead guilty and has not agreed to be a ‘state’s witness.’”
According to the local news site, decaturish.com, Vince Champion, the southeast regional director of the International Brotherhood of Police officers, said that police officers had stopped answering calls midshift in response to the charges being filed against the officers,
“The union, we would never advocate this. We wouldn’t advocate a blue flu,” Champion told the site. “We don’t know the numbers. Apparently we’re learning that command staff are asking outlying counties for support and aren’t getting it.”
The Atlanta Police Department denied these accounts, saying instead the online suggestions that multiple officers from each zone had walked off the job were inaccurate.
“The department is experiencing a higher than usual number of call outs with the incoming shift. We have enough resources to maintain operations & remain able to respond to incidents,” according to their release.
This is a breaking news story.