District Attorney Paul Howard accused Rolfe of kicking Brooks after the shooting, adding that Brosnan stood on the gravely injured man. Brosnan faces four charges, including aggravated assault.
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The attorneys for both men dispute the charges, maintain their innocence and claim their actions were justified. They also deny trying to further hurt Brooks after the shooting.
Bryant told Channel 2 that he welcomes scrutiny against police use of force, but he wants prosecutors to exercise due process before bringing charges.
“What we do want is a level of due process as it relates to how investigations are handled and how we’re criminally charged,” he said.
In a statement to the news station, DA Paul Howard’s office said, “I do not believe that interim chief’s statement that the District Attorney’s Office moved too fast is supported by facts.”
DA Paul Howard announces charges against officers involved in Rayshard Brooks killing
The statement added that Howard's decision to charge the officers was made after his office's own investigation, citing eight videos of the incident as evidence. He compared that to the one video the GBI reviewed before charging two men in the Ahmaud Arbery shooting case. Those charges were brought one day after the GBI took over the case.
“The actions of Officer Rolfe were so egregious that the police department and mayor, within hours after the incident, fired Officer Rolfe without the benefit of a GBI investigation or a hearing,” the statement continued.
Chief Erika Shields resigned soon after the incident, leading to Bryant's appointment to interim chief.
RELATED: Bryant backs officers, says reforms are coming
Bryant told Channel 2 that Howard would normally wait for the GBI to finish its investigation into an officer-involved shooting before deciding whether to bring charges. Howard said he’s only being criticized because of the outcome of his office’s investigation.
“Isn’t it true that after five days of intensive investigation, if we had moved to exonerate Officer Rolfe, that rather than being the subject of threats I would be a hero,” his statement said.
Several government officials have criticized Howard's decision to quickly bring charges in this case, since he is in the middle of a heated runoff election.
MORE: Longtime Fulton DA forced into runoff vs. former chief deputy
The GBI, which is investigating $250,000 in payments previously received by Howard from Atlanta, also recently widened its investigation to include Howard's use of grand jury subpoenas issued in the Brooks' case.
In a statement provided to AJC.com on Thursday night, Rolfe’s legal team said Attorney General Chris Carr requested the GBI to expand its investigation.
Bryant said morale within Atlanta police has been low since widespread protests began against police brutality and racism. He said the quick charges in Brooks' case has only exacerbated those morale issues.
This story was first reported by Channel 2 Action News.
In other news:
Police are still searching for the shooter