The Atlanta Police Department released a 911 call from a Wendy’s employee about Rayshard Brooks, the man who was killed by an officer on June 12 after he fell asleep in the drive-thru of the restaurant not far from the city’s downtown.
The unidentified employee told the dispatcher there was a drunk man blocking the flow of traffic in the drive-thru.
“Um, I have a car, I think he’s intoxicated. He’s in the middle of my drive-thru,” the woman said in the recording released on Monday. “I tried to wake him up, but he’s parked dead in the middle of the drive-thru, so I don’t know what’s wrong with him.”
“Is he breathing, ma’am? Do you know?” the dispatcher asked.
“Yeah, he woke up and looked at me,” the employee responded. “I was like, you’ve got to move out of the drive-thru because people are going around.”
The worker described Brooks’ car and confirmed his race after the dispatcher asked if he was Black. When the operator asked if he had a weapon, the worker denied seeing anything.
“No, no,” she said. “I think he’s intoxicated.”
Brooks died on June 12 after a confrontation with officers Garrett Rolfe and Devin Brosnan, who responded to the call, with Brosnan first to arrive at the scene. Body camera footage showed Brooks calmly speaking with the officers, and he willingly took a sobriety test. The interaction took a turn when the officers tried to arrest Brooks after he failed the test. His blood-alcohol level was .108, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.
A struggle ensued and Brooks managed to grab one of their tasers before he ran away. During the chase, he pointed the taser at the officers before Rolfe shot him in the back twice.
Brooks was pronounced dead at a local hospital. His death added more fervor to protests that have been happening in Atlanta since George Floyd died on Memorial Day. The Wendy’s restaurant was destroyed by a fire set during a demonstration on June 13. Rolfe was fired after the incident and Brosnan is on administrative duty.
Atlanta Police also released both officers’ disciplinary records on Monday. Rolfe had 12 incidents on his report, including the Brooks shooting. He was reprimanded for excessive use of force in October 2017. Rolfe was also cited in five car accidents, four citizen complaints and a firearm discharge. He was employed by APD for six and a half years.
Local station Fox 5 published appearing to show the actual disciplinary files of the two officers. Brosnan’s showed two marks on his record, both dated from June 14 — two days after the Brooks shooting — by which time Brosnan already had been relegated to desk duty. At least one appears to be related to the Brooks incident, which is implied in the reports as case No. 201641723.
Rolfe’s record did not surprise L. Chris Stewart, a lawyer for Brooks’ family.
“I could have told people, ‘I guarantee you this officer has had issues in the past.’ It’s normally that situation,” Stewart told CNN on Monday. “You know who causes issues or who has had prior issues or who has complaints. A lot of them don’t get justified and then they stay on the force.”
Brooks’ family called for justice during an emotional press conference on Monday.
“There is no justice. I can never get my husband back,” said his widow Tomika Miller.
“The trust we have in the police force is broken,” his cousin Tiara Brooks said. “The only way to heal some of those wounds is through a conviction and a drastic change in the police department.”