*The new prosecutor in Fulton County is calling for another prosecutor to oversee the Rayshard Brooks case.
Brooks was fatally shot last summer in Atlanta by officer Garrett Rolfe on June, 12, 2020. Rolfe was fired and charged with felony murder, five counts of aggravated assault, four counts of violation of oath of office and one count of criminal damage to property. He was ultimately released on a $500,000 bond.
In a letter addressed to Georgia State Attorney General Chris Carr, acting District Attorney Fani Willis cited the actions of her predecessor Paul Howard as reason for her decision, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“My predecessor obtained arrest warrants against the following defendants for incidents that occurred during the campaign,” the letter states. “I believe his conduct, including using video evidence in campaign television advertisements, may have violated Georgia Bar Rule 3.8(g). In addition, as you are aware, my predecessor’s conduct also prompted a referral to the GBI for criminal investigation by you his issuance of grand jury subpoenas at a time when no Fulton County Grand Jury was empaneled.”
As noted by NewsOne, Carr could assign the case to another prosecutor, take up the case in his office, or pass on to the prosecuting attorneys council.
Willis also asked Carr to reassign the case involving two students at historically Black colleges. Taniyah Pilgrim, a Spelman College Student, and her boyfriend Messiah Young, a Morehouse student, were wrongfully pulled from a car in downtown Atlanta traffic during a Black Lives Matter protest over the summer. Howard announced charges against six officers involved with the incident.
In the letter, Willis also noted that Carr had requested a probe into whether Howard improperly issued grand jury subpoenas in the Rolfe case, the report states.
“I believe both matters create sufficient question of the appropriateness of this office continuing to handle the investigation and possible prosecution of these cases that the public interest is served by disqualifying this office and referring the matter to specially appointed prosecutor,” Willis wrote in the letter which was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Attorneys Chris Stewart and Justin Miller, who represent both Brooks’ family and Pilgrim, said the families were not given advance notice of Willis’ decision.