While performing CPR, former Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe begged for Rayshard Brooks to “keep breathing,” body camera footage reveals.
“Mr. Brooks keep breathing,” Rolfe, 27, can be heard saying in the footage. “Keep breathing for me.”
“The jerky body-cam footage captures him kneeling on the ground and administering CPR to the bleeding man while Brosnan looks on,” reports The Daily Mail, which published the footage. “Rolfe administered CPR until the ambulance arrived and can be heard repeatedly calling Mr. Brooks’ name as he tried to keep him alive.”
On Friday, a Wendy’s employee called the police after Brooks, under the influence of alcohol, passed out behind the wheel, blocking drive-through traffic.
“The officers ran Brooks through a field sobriety test and a breathalyzer that pegged Brooks’ blood alcohol concentration at .108%, according to body cam footage released by the Atlanta police department. The legal limit to drive is .08%,” The Daily Wire reported on the incident. “After cooperating for nearly half an hour, Brooks fought with the officers as they tried to place him in handcuffs. All three struggled and fell to the ground where Brooks managed to take Brosnan’s taser and escape the officers. Rolfe shot after Brooks fired the stolen taser at him.”
Rolfe was charged Wednesday with felony murder.
A close friend of Rolfe’s said the former officer did not want to shoot Brooks, but felt no other choice to preserve his own life.
“Garrett didn’t want to do it,” said the friend, according to The Daily Mail. “He had been punched and was dazed. Brooks had gone to tase him and he said that he knew that if he went down Brooks might kill him.”
“[Rolfe] told me he fired a shot up above [Brooks’] head but he didn’t stop and so he fired twice more,” the source added, “He didn’t want to do it. There’s no hate in Garrett’s body. He doesn’t hate black. He doesn’t hate white. In that moment he was in fear for his life.”
Following the announcement of the highly controversial felony murder charge, Rolfe’s attorney said in a statement: “Officer Rolfe is well known to the courts and there is no compelling reason to bring any charges against them before the GBI has completed its investigation and published its findings.”
In a separate statement, the attorney for Devin Brosnan, Rolfe’s partner, ripped Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard for the “rush to misjudgment.”
“The decision to initiate charges by the Fulton County DA’s office is irrational and obviously based on factors which should have nothing to do with the proper administration of justice,” the attorney said in a blistering rebuke of the DA. “This was not a rush to judgment. This was a rush to misjudgment.”
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