A lawyer for Police Officer Garrett Rolfe said Wednesday that the City of Atlanta’s Civil Service Board’s decision to reinstate his client was the right move, sending the message that “due process matters.”
Rolfe was terminated nearly immediately following the fatal shooting of Rayshard Brooks last summer. The Civil Board decided Tuesday that the officer was indeed denied his right to due process.
“We are very excited that the Civil Board says that due process matters,” attorney Lance LoRusso said in a statement, according to CNN.
LoRusso added that his client’s “reinstatement will likely take some time, but he intended to get his client back to work.”
“Due to the City’s failure to comply with several provisions of the Code and the information received during witnesses’ testimony, the Board concludes the Appellant was not afforded his right to due process,” the board said. “Therefore, the Board GRANTS the Appeal of Garrett Rolfe and revokes his dismissal as an employee of the APD.”
Rolfe was hit with felony charges in the death of Brooks a week after the fatal shooting took place in a Wendy’s parking lot. The reinstated officer is currently facing 11 counts, including felony murder and assault with a deadly weapon.
The Daily Wire reported on the incident back in June:
Rolfe killed Brooks late on Friday night after responding to a call from a Wendy’s employee that a man had fallen asleep behind the wheel in his car in the drive-through and was obstructing traffic. The officers ran Brooks through a field sobriety test and a breathalyzer that pegged Brooks’ blood alcohol concentration at .108%, according to body cam footage released by the Atlanta police department. The legal limit to drive is .08%.
After cooperating for nearly half an hour, Brooks fought with the officers as they tried to place him in handcuffs. All three struggled and fell to the ground where Brooks managed to take Brosnan’s taser and escape the officers. Rolfe shot after Brooks fired the stolen taser at him.
Following the reinstatement, the Atlanta Police Department emphasized that the board “did not make a determination as to whether officer Rolfe violated Atlanta Police Department policies.”
“It is important to note that the CSB did not make a determination as to whether officer Rolfe violated Atlanta Police Department policies,” the department said in a statement. “In light of the CSB’s rulings, APD will conduct an assessment to determine if additional investigative actions are needed.”
Back in June, Atlanta Police Department homicide detective assigned to the Brooks case, Al Hogan, sided with Rolfe in a defense filing, noting that he would have brought 10 charges against Brooks had he survived the incident.
“Atlanta PD detective assigned to the [Rayshard Brooks] investigation says he would have charged Brooks — not Rolfe — with 10 counts, including multiple felonies,” posted legal analyst Philip Holloway. Captioning a screenshot of Hogan’s letter, Holloway noted: “Usually law enforcement are witnesses for the state but this is from a defense filing.”
READ IT: #AtlantaPD detective assigned to the #RayshardBrooks investigation says he would have charged Brooks – not Rolfe – with 10 counts, including multiple felonies. Usually law enforcement are witnesses for the state but this is from a defense filing. pic.twitter.com/huj903b7Tu
— Philip Holloway 😊 (@PhilHollowayEsq) June 29, 2020
Related: READ IT: Atlanta Detective Sides With Officer In Defense Filing For Rayshard Brooks Case, Says Brooks Would’ve Been Charged On 10 Counts