02:50 - Source: CNN
Police cameras show fatal shooting of Rayshard Brooks
Washington CNN  — 

Stacey Abrams on Monday called the death of Rayshard Brooks a “murder,” saying “at no point did he present a danger that warranted his death.”

“They knew that he was impaired because he had parked in that driveway, and they knew when he ran away that he did not pose a danger that was a deadly force incentive,” Abrams told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.” “The decision to shoot him in the back was one made out of maybe impatience or frustration or panic, but it was not one that justifies deadly force. It was murder.”

Brooks, 27, was shot twice in the back and killed during a confrontation with police in a Wendy’s parking lot in Atlanta on Friday after police moved to handcuff him for suspected driving under the influence. Videos from the scene show that Brooks took an officer’s Taser during the attempted arrest and then fired it at the officers as he ran away. His death has been listed as a homicide in an autopsy report released by the Fulton County, Georgia, Medical Examiner’s Office.

Abrams, a former Democratic Georgia House minority leader who lost a controversial gubernatorial race in 2018, also said, “at no point did (Brooks) present a danger that warranted his death. And that’s what we’re talking about. A murder because a man made a mistake, not a mistake that would have cost the police officer his life but a mistake that was caused out of some form of dehumanization of Rayshard Brooks.”

The police officer who shot Brooks, identified by police as Garrett Rolfe, was fired, the city’s police chief resigned and a second officer involved in the killing was placed on administrative duty. Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said a decision on whether to bring charges could come around Wednesday.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, a Democrat, said during a CNN town hall, “Mayors Who Matter” that she watched video of the shooting and said the incident was “not confrontational.” Brooks was “a guy that you were rooting for,” Bottoms added.

Abrams also called last week’s chaotic Georgia primary election “grotesque” and said it was a “déjà vu” to the gubernatorial race in 2018 in which she was defeated by Gov. Brian Kemp. The 2018 gubernatorial election was marred by claims of voter suppression that included ballots being rejected over the state’s “exact match” standard and voter registration issues for many African American voters.

On Tuesday, voters across the state stood in long lines to vote during the primary election. Voting in several counties were extended after polls closed and some voters reported standing in the sun for almost four hours.

“For me it was déjà vu. I am very aware of the frailty and the fallacy of the notion of acts of democracy in Georgia,” Abrams said Monday. “We watched the secretary of state in 2018 set up a system of voter suppression and we watched the current secretary of state continue the same work. The reality is this was a mix of incompetence, malfeasance. It was a deliberate indifference to voters and it’s a solvable problem.”

She continued, “What happened in Georgia was grotesque because of the scale but similar things happened in Pennsylvania, in South Carolina and Nevada. In Pennsylvania it was because they were trying to do better and they needed more time to correct their challenges, but in Nevada and in South Carolina, Republican secretaries of state did their best to weaken access to the right to vote.”

CNN’s Dianne Gallagher, Kelly Mena and Paul P. Murphy contributed to this report.