Nov 21, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Rayshard Brooks' family to get $1M settlement from Atlanta City Council

People stretching as far as the eye can see march in the streets against police brutality

Demonstrators march through the streets against police brutality and racism on June 20, 2020 in Atlanta. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The Atlanta City Council approved a $1 million settlement to the widow of Rayshard Brooks, the 27-year-old Black man who was shot and killed by Atlanta police in a Wendy's parking lot in 2020.

Why it matters: The fatal shooting of Brooks sparked protests and fueled awareness and activism about the police's treatment of Black people and systemic racism.

Catch up quick: On June 12, 2020, Atlanta police officers Garrett Rolfe and Devin Brosnan were called to a Wendy's in Peoplestown where Brooks had fallen asleep while sitting in a drive-through line. Both Rolfe and Brosnan are white.

  • When officers tried to arrest Brooks for driving under the influence, a scuffle ensued, ending with Brooks firing a taser at the officers and Rolfe shooting him twice in the back.

Details: Under a resolution approved Monday afternoon, the city would pay $1 million to settle claims filed by Tomika Miller, Brooks' widow, his estate and lawyers involved in the case.

Aftermath: Not long after the shooting, Atlanta police chief Erika Shields resigned and Rolfe was fired. Rolfe was reinstated in 2021.

  • In August, Pete Skandalakis, a special prosecutor assigned to the case, dropped criminal charges against Rolfe and Brosnan.
  • Rolfe and Brosnan's federal lawsuits against former district attorney Paul Howard, former Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, and others are pending.
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