ATLANTA: Big New Developments In The Rayshard Brooks Use Of Lethal Force Case

Published on June 15, 2020

This story will NOT be quietly going away any time soon. Not with developments like these ones.

On Friday, police were called when Rayshard Brooks fell asleep in a Wendy’s drive-thru. When the dust was settled, Brooks was shot dead by a cop after what began as a peaceful exchange turned violent, moments before the handcuffs were slipped onto his wrists. There were enormous protests. And somebody torched the Wendy’s, which burned to the ground because the Fire Department couldn’t safely show up to put out.

And that was just the first 24 hours. For more details see our reporting on it here: Tensions Run High In Atlanta Over Lethal Use Of Force Incident — Here’s The 411

The public had a couple of video clips available on that first day, when people rushed to judgment. The contours of the story shift quite a bit when we see the moments that led up to it.

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All was well through the initial meeting and sobriety test. Even blowing into the breathalyzer went smoothly enough. It was not until the handcuffs came out, and the police said they would have to arrest him that the otherwise cordial encounter turned hairy. You can see for yourself what that looked like:

You can draw your own conclusions — as many have — about whether you think that use of force was justified or not.

The plot thickened when the autopsy came out.

Let’s not pretend this is as ‘open-and-shut’ as the George Floyd incident is.

But even those on the left who are not telling flat out lies are misrepresenting the incident in almost every way they can to poison the public’s views of the police action. “He was running away,” they say, “Tasers aren’t lethal,” they go on. What gets short if any shrift at all is that Brooks was firing a weapon at police that could incapacitate them, leaving them at Brooks’ mercy.

Police are in some sense like NFL refs; they are expected to make a decision in a split second that we can then scrutinize with endless slow motion replays. It is essentially an impossible ask and no replay booth can bring back a lost life. What makes the Brooks and Floyd killings so entirely different is time itself.

As Derek Chauvin drove his knee into George Floyd’s neck, a nearly nine-minute eternity occurred, during which time any of the officers should have saved Floyd’s life. The shooting in Atlanta could not be more different. A suspect attacks, steals a weapon, runs while aiming and possibly shooting it all in a matter of seconds. The incident is over almost before it starts.

It can be argued that the officers should have deescalated the situation, they could have simply given him a warning and told him to call an Uber, perhaps. The assumption being that this was a simple police interaction. But there is no such thing as a simple police interaction. Anytime police confront a suspect even on the most minor charge the possibility exists that the person could have warrants, could be looking at jail time, and could act accordingly. —Federalist

They, like ClashDaily, invoked the Boston Massacre rule of law, and a deferral of judgment to those with access to the facts.

After the Boston Massacre in 1770 it was John Adams who defended the British soldiers who had fired on the angry crowd of patriots. The soldiers probably could have handled the situation better, leading to less loss of life, but Adams understood that was not the standard. He understood that the law gives those entrusted with keeping order, especially through violence, a lot of latitude on the use of force.

Six of the soldiers were acquitted, two found guilty not of murder but of manslaughter. It was a lesson for our nascent nation that taught us the value of rule of law, even when it protected the very powers the founders would soon be at war against. That is to say, no matter the righteous passions of protesters demanding police accountability, Garrett Rolfe must be tried based on the law, not based on the societal moment.

The fact of the matter is that if you are in a dark parking lot, you resist arrest, steal a cop’s Taser, point it at him and fire, there is a very good likelihood you will be shot. This is not the George Floyd case and a rush to judgment will only inflame, not soothe the mood of our angry country. —Federalist

His widow wants to see them in prison.

This will take some time to play out.

Meanwhile, where everything defaults immediately to race, and the officer is left to PROVE that he isn’t actually racist we are seeing this:

The crowds will do what the crowds always do. Fortunately, the deceased’s family has called for peaceful protest. Then again, George Floyd’s family called for the same thing, and we all saw how well that went.