Fired, arrested, and charged with felony murder for the June 13th killing of Rayshard Brooks in a Wendy’s parking lot, former Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe is now turning the tables on the city, suing them for dismissing him from the force without following the proper disciplinary proceedings set forth by the city code and the Constitution.
Rolfe, who was caught up in the surge of anti-cop sentiment that followed the death of George Floyd two weeks earlier, is seen by many as an innocent victim of an overzealous prosecutor in Fulton County. Body cameras showed Rolfe and his partner calmly speaking with Brooks for more than half an hour, and there was no sign of racial animus during any of this time. Things took a turn for the worse only when the cops tried to arrest Brooks for drunk driving – a step they had no choice but to take given Georgia law. Instead of cooperating, Brooks fought the police, stole Rolfe’s taser, and took off, putting his own life in jeopardy. When he turned back to fire the taser at Rolfe, his fate was sealed.
This was not a case of police hunting down a black man and killing him for sport. It was not a case of police using more force than necessary. This was a textbook example of what cops should do in the case of a violent suspect, and the fact that Rolfe was fired is a stain on American justice. The fact that he’s been charged with murder is a travesty of unspeakable proportions.
Hopefully, with this lawsuit, he can begin to find real justice.
From Fox News:
Garrett Rolfe filed a lawsuit Tuesday in Fulton County Superior Court in which he claims he was unfairly ousted from the force “without an investigation, without proper notice, without a disciplinary hearing, and in direct violation of the municipal code of the City of Atlanta.”
Rolfe was fired on June 13, a day after he fatally shot Brooks. The 27-year-old faces 11 charges, including felony murder.
In a statement, Rolfe’s attorneys say that the City of Atlanta “willfully and blatantly failed to abide” by city ordinances designed to give employees due process as well as the opportunity to plead their case before they are fired.
Prosecutors, meanwhile, have asked a judge to revoke Rolfe’s bail because he traveled to Florida without permission – a violation of the conditions of his bond order.
Well, if Rolfe went to Florida without the court’s permission, then he will have to pay for that mistake. But while the court is pondering the revocation of Rolfe’s bail, it should also ponder the legitimacy of the overriding charges. It should review the tapes again, consult the state’s laws, and perhaps give thought to the Fulton County prosecutor’s own predilection for fraud before moving forward with this case.
At the moment, mob justice is playing out in Rolfe’s case. It’s time to restore the rule of law.