An Atlanta police officer will face felony murder charges for the death of 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks, who was shot in the back as he fled from the officer, the district attorney announced Wednesday.
District Attorney Paul Howard Howard said the police officer, Garrett Rolfe, had no justification for shooting Brooks, and aggravated the case by kicking Brook’s body as he lay on the ground bleeding.
“We concluded that, at the time that Mr Brooks was shot, he did not pose an immediate threat of death or serious physical injury to the officers,” Howard said.
The death of 27-year-old Brooks, another in a long line of African-Americans killed by police, further heightened racial concerns in the US at a time of national soul-searching over racism and police brutality.
Rolfe, who shot Brooks on June 12, was fired the next day after surveillance video showed his actions.
Howard told a news conference in Atlanta that Rolfe faces the possibility of life in prison or the death penalty if convicted.