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Atlanta police chief resigns amid backlash over deadly capturing of black man

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Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms introduced on Saturday that town’s police chief had submitted her resignation simply hours after the deadly capturing of a black man who struggled with police throughout a sobriety take a look at.

Bottoms stated it was Police Chief Erika Shields’ personal determination to resign from the position, which she took in 2016. In accordance with Bottoms, she’s going to stay with town in an undetermined place.

“Due to her need that Atlanta be a mannequin of what significant reform ought to seem like throughout this nation, Chief Shields has supplied to right away step apart as Police Chief in order that town could transfer ahead with urgency and rebuilding the belief so desperately wanted all through our communities,” Bottoms stated, in response to ABC News.

Interim Corrections Chief Rodney Bryant will function interim police chief till a everlasting alternative is discovered.

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The incident got here as Atlanta and different cities had been already reeling from the loss of life of George Floyd and the mass protests that ensued consequently. Simply on Wedsday, two extra Atlanta law enforcement officials had been fired in reference to an incident through which two college students were pulled from a car throughout protests in opposition to police brutality.

With tensions already flaring, Saturday’s capturing of Rayshard Brooks, 27, compounded high-profile instances of black males killed throughout police encounters.

Authorities keep that Brooks grabbed an officer’s Taser and ran with it. Throughout a information convention, Bottoms stated she did not suppose using lethal power was warranted and that she requested the officer concerned be fired.

“I don’t consider that this was a justified use of lethal power and have known as for the speedy termination of the officer,” Bottoms stated.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), which is investigating the capturing, stated the lethal confrontation began with officers responding to a grievance {that a} man was sleeping in a automobile blocking the restaurant’s drive-thru lane. The GBI stated Brooks failed a area sobriety take a look at after which resisted officers’ makes an attempt to arrest him.

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The GBI launched safety digital camera video of the capturing Saturday. The footage reveals a person working from two law enforcement officials as he raises a hand, which is holding some sort of object, towards an officer just a few steps behind him. The officer attracts his gun and fires as the person retains working, then falls to the bottom within the parking zone.

GBI Director Vic Reynolds stated Brooks had grabbed a Taser from one of many officers and appeared to level it on the officer as he fled, prompting the officer to achieve for his gun.

In a scathing assertion, the NAACP accused the Atlanta Police Division of continuous to “terrorize protestors and homicide unarmed Black our bodies.”

A crowd of roughly 150 demonstrators, together with members of Brooks’ household, gathered Saturday exterior the restaurant the place he was shot. Police shut down streets for a number of blocks across the restaurant as protesters marched peacefully within the streets.

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Gerald Griggs, an legal professional and a vice chairman of Atlanta’s NAACP chapter, estimated there have been 150 folks protesting on the scene as he walked with them Saturday afternoon.

“The persons are upset,” Griggs stated. “They wish to know why their pricey brother Rayshard Brooks was shot and killed when he was merely asleep on the passenger facet and never doing something.”

On Saturday, Bottoms expressed her condolences for the Brooks’ household.

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“There are not any phrases sturdy sufficient to specific how sincerely sorry I’m in your loss,” she stated.

“I do hope that one can find some consolation within the swift actions which have been taken at present and the significant reforms that our metropolis will implement on behalf of the numerous women and men who’ve misplaced their lives throughout this nation.”

The Related Press and Fox Information’ Louis Casiano contributed to this report.

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