Keisha Lance Bottoms Announces Reforms To Use-Of-Force Policies Within Atlanta Police Department Following Killing Of Rayshard Brooks
Moving forward, any time deadly force is used, it must be reported to Atlanta's citizens review board.
June 16, 2020 at 4:32 pm
Following the killing of Rayshard Brooks by members of the Atlanta Police Department, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced Monday that she is authorizing a number of orders to revise the level of force allowed within the city's police department.
"In an effort for us to develop a succinct appeal for human rights, I am signing an administrative order that will convene a body to begin to succinctly articulate our grievances and what we see as our solutions," she said at a news conference according to CNN.
After watching footage of the confrontation between Brooks and former Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe, Bottoms said Friday that it "became abundantly clear very quickly that there is a need for us to take an immediate look at our training policies."
Per an earlier Blavity report, police were called to a Wendy's restaurant on Friday night after receiving word of a gentleman sleeping in his car and preventing others from ordering at the drive-thru. After Brooks failed a sobriety test, the 27-year-old briefly tussled with Rolfe and his partner, Devin Brosnan. As he attempted to run away with one of the officer's Tasers, Brooks was shot in the back and later passed away at a nearby hospital.
Per Fox 5 Atlanta, Bottoms' orders instruct policemen to utilize de-escalation practices before moving toward physical or deadly measures. Moving forward, any time deadly force is used, it must be reported to Atlanta's citizens review board.
"We understand that this is the beginning of a great deal of work that lies ahead of us to make sure that we do all we can do to protect our communities," Bottoms said. "It is very clear our police officers should be guardians and not warriors within our communities."
As protests continue for the many unarmed Black men and women killed by police, much of the narrative has now shifted toward defunding law enforcement. As the mayor was explaining the measures in the order, a number of peaceful protesters were seen blocking cars from exiting the Atlanta City Hall garage.
As Mayor @KeishaBottoms addresses the City of #Atlanta, protestors are now sitting outside the City Hall garage to block vehicles from exiting as they demand to speak to her. They keep chanting, “Keisha, where you at!?!” @cbs46 pic.twitter.com/H008YaIuMA— Brittany Edney (@BrittanyEdney) June 15, 2020
Although she said on June 4 that protesters matter to her, Bottoms suggested certain forms of uprisings will not do much for progress in Georgia's capital city.
"Burning down buildings will not get us change in this city because if anything it is going to erase the message and it is going to eclipse what this is all about," she said according to Fox 5 News.