Lawmakers rally in support of Atlanta police department, call for special prosecutor

Police officers have reportedly begun calling out sick in higher than average numbers in Atlanta, as they feel unsupported by the population they protect as well as city leaders and legislators

Updated: June 22, 2020 - 12:39pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

The Atlanta police union and lawmakers are calling for a special prosecutor to be named in the Rayshard Brooks case.

The International Brotherhood of Police Officers was joined at a press conference Sunday by GOP Rep. Doug Collins and state representatives including Georgia Senate Majority Leader Mike Dugan.

The community leaders were there to voice support for the Atlanta Police Department, but also used the moment to call for Attorney General Chris Carr to appoint an independent prosecutor to oversee the case. 

"It is time for the district attorney of Fulton County to step aside. You don't do it for politics. Your job is to find justice for everyone," Collins said.

The Georgia attorney general cannot appoint a special prosecutor on his own. The district attorney first must recuse himself, or a judge must disqualify him, before a different prosecutor can be appointed. 

Last week, District Attorney Paul Howard announced that the two officers involved in Brooks' shooting outside an Atlanta Wendy's would be face significant charges. Former Officer Garrett Rolfe faces 11 charges, including felony murder and aggravated assault, while Officer Devin Brosnan has been charged with aggravated assault and two violations of oath of office.

Many public voices and the legal teams of the two cops have wondered why Howard, in a tough reelection bid, failed to wait for the results of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's report prior to filing charges. 

In the days following the charges, Atlanta police officers have reportedly started calling out of work.

"We're being attacked by Paul Howard. We do the job to protect. We expect to be protected by our leaders and they have all failed us," said one officer at Sunday's conference.

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