Democrat Atlanta Mayor Keisha Bottoms may not need to participate in the radical lefts’ misguided “Defund the Police” movement because officers are walking off the job in protest.
“Georgia police sources tell me only two police precincts are staffed in the entire city of Atlanta,” conservative commentator Todd Starnes reported. “Entire zones of officers are walking off the job. Zones 1,3,5 and 6 have left their posts. Zones walking off the job.”
A CBS News affiliate in Atlanta confirmed worst fears that the politically-motivated felony murder charges against two officers in the shooting death of Rayshard Brooks are being met with fierce opposition from the men and women who form the thin blue line.
“Several Atlanta Police officers have reportedly walked off the job at precincts across the city. The claim comes hours after charges were filed against ex-officer Garrett Rolfe and Officer Devin Brosnan in the Rayshard Brooks case,” CBS stated. “The buzz of patrol officers staging walkouts and refusing to answer calls from Precincts 3, 5, 6 and others began circulating social media Wednesday evening. CBS46 confirmed the walkout through sources at 8:30 p.m.”
The incident surrounding Brooks death is well documented and captured on police bodycam footage. Officers were called to a local Wendy’s fast food restaurant after Brooks reportedly fell asleep in the drive-thru line of cars. Officers are shown respectfully conducted a field sobriety test, which Brooks reportedly failed. When officers go to handcuff Brooks, he resists arrest, assaults officers, and strips one of a taser. Brooks is seen on video turning and discharging the weapon at officers before they fire. Video footage appears to indicate a textbook reasonable use of deadly-force incident.
“Mr. Brooks was not running away. Mr. Brooks turned and offered extreme violence toward a uniformed law enforcement officer,” officer Garrett Rolfe’s attorney Lance Lorusso said. “If he was able to deploy the Taser, it would incapacitate Officer Rolfe through his body armor, and at that point, if he decided to disarm another officer, he would be in possession of a firearm.”
Charges against the officers appear to be politically motivated. Fulton County District Attorney Paul L. Howard Jr. is reportedly embroiled in a tight primary runoff election. Pressure from the wave of George Floyd protests may be playing a strong part in his decision to charge the officers, despite contradictory video evidence.
District Attorney Howard also sidestepped the log-established process of allowing the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to complete a review of the officer-involved shooting. The Bureau was never consulted in this case as Howard barreled forward in what appears to be an effort to save his own job.
“Charging an Atlanta police officer with felony murder before the completion of the GBI’s investigation was a political decision, not a legal one,” U.S. Rep. Doug Collins stated. “I’m calling on Attorney General Chris Carr to appoint an independent district attorney in the case of Rayshard Brooks to ensure Georgians have complete confidence that this case is devoid of any and all political influence. If a special prosecutor was warranted in the Ahmaud Arbery case, then it certainly warrants the appointment of one here.”
While political leaders such as Mayor Bottoms and D.A. Howard play politics, everyday Atlantans are at increased risk due to police walkouts. Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields has resigned, and interim chief Rodney Bryant has straddled the line, calling the police walkouts excessive sick days.
“Some are angry. Some are fearful. Some are confused on what we do in this space. Some may feel abandoned,” Bryant said of the officers.
Communities across America may very well discover what “Defund the Police” truly means when officers refuse to protect and serve.