After 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks was killed in a police shooting in Atlanta Friday night, people took to social media to decry the incident.
Brooks’ death comes after weeks of protests in metro Atlanta and around the country about police violence against black people. In Minneapolis, George Floyd was killed on Memorial Day after a white officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. The officer, Derek Chauvin, was charged in Floyd’s death.
Lil Yachty weighed in on Brooks’ death, as did others.
ATLANTA PD SHOT AND KILLED AN UNARMED BLACK MAN LAST NIGHT.— comeback season boat (@lilyachty) June 13, 2020
Even if he was guilty of DUI.— Jason Willan (@ConsultFantasy) June 13, 2020
Even if he resisted arrest.
Even if he struck a cop.
Even if he attempted to flee the scene.
YOU DONT GET TO KILL HIM. #RayshardBrooks #AtlantaPD
Using hashtags like #StopKillingUs and #BlackLivesMatter, they expressed hurt and frustration.
Wow.— Marah Lidey (@marahml) June 13, 2020
Rayshard Brooks was sleeping in his car, last night in Atlanta. The police woke him, attempted to arrest him and then shot him IN THE BACK as he attempted to run away.
I have no words left.#StopKillingUs #BlackLivesMattter https://t.co/eAiFAsBPk0
At the Wendy’s where Brooks was shot, a crowd blocked the parking lot and marched holding signs. They chanted “No justice, no peace.”
One demonstrator held a sign that read, “Another Black Man Was Killed In Your Neighborhood.”
A woman in the crowd said she drove to the restaurant at 7:45 a.m. after seeing video of the shooting on social media.
She shouted: “They were out here selling burgers and we shut this (expletive) down.”
As they drove by, dozens of motorists have honked in support.
About 10:45, a sedan pulled up and people in the car said they were relatives of Brooks. They declined to talk to the media and drove off a few minutes later.
Another car pulled up and one of the demonstrators said to the driver, “Get you a burger at a black-owned business.”
Protesters called for sit-ins.
“This is the new ground zero,” said John Wade, a leader of the demonstration at the Wendy’s on University Avenue where Brooks was killed. “Another man was taken right at this spot.”
John Wade, a leader of the demonstration here at the Wendy’s on University Avenue, where Rayshard Brooks was killed overnight in an officer-involved shooting:— Scott Trubey (@FitzTrubey) June 13, 2020
“This is the new ground zero. Another man was taken right at this spot.”https://t.co/Kv1vwlbkwU pic.twitter.com/l9eT2b7ylT
On Twitter, people continued to lament Brooks’ death and police actions.
Rayshard Brooks was sleeping in his car. Atlanta police woke him, sought to arrest him, and shot him in the back when he ran. There is dashcam video. Dear God. https://t.co/IalYB8O2YB— venetianblonde (@venetianblonde) June 13, 2020
Struggling with police is not punishable by death.— Veteran Freshman - #PapaYuie (@yusufyuie) June 13, 2020
Grabbing a taser to stop from being tased isn’t punishable by death.
Running away from police on foot, unarmed isn’t punishable by death.
But the atlanta police murdered #RayshardBrooks.
And people expressed frustration with Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and other black politicians. When some people started looting following protests earlier in the month, Bottoms gave a speech along with celebrities Killer Mike and T.I., calling for people to go home.
Those people included former mayoral candidate Vincent Fort.
Where is @KeishaBottoms? Doing interviews on CNN or MSNBC? While a black man is being killed by Atlanta cops. We need to hear from mayor #gapol @wsbtv @11AliveNews @cbs46 @FOX5Atlantahttps://t.co/g4qIPGY6B4— Vincent Fort (@fortforatlanta) June 13, 2020
Race soldiers with the Atlanta PD executed a Black man #RayshardBrooks last night.— Tariq Nasheed 🇺🇸 (@tariqnasheed) June 13, 2020
Is Keisha Bottoms going to do another one of her sassy press conferences reprimanding those white officers the same way she reprimanded Black people for protesting?
APD killed #RayshardBrooks last night in Atlanta. No one is going to rest until the police are abolished. Black politicians have blood on their hands and no amount of celebrity is going to change that.— Clarissa Brooks (@ClarissaMBrooks) June 13, 2020
Well, well, I guess Atlanta isn’t Wakanda after all is it! @Tip @KeishaBottoms @KillerMike #rayshardbrooks https://t.co/tCDhMVslqg— Tommy Gibbs (@TommyGi02218725) June 13, 2020
The protesters at the Wendy’s began marching. The Atlanta Police Department helped them block traffic as people reacted to Brooks’ death.
Demonstrators starting to block University Avenue outside the Wendy’s where a man was shot and killed last night in an officer-involved shooting. pic.twitter.com/lwSz5cbynx— Scott Trubey (@FitzTrubey) June 13, 2020
Demonstrators continue to block University Avenue. “Respect what we’re trying to do. Turn your car around.” pic.twitter.com/iWETbRQo6M— Scott Trubey (@FitzTrubey) June 13, 2020
My people outside on University Ave justifiably upset. No cars getting through. Wouldn’t even let me through in my work vehicle. I could feel the pain in their voices. pic.twitter.com/2HP5TiPRhb— . (@SonofSolomon_) June 13, 2020
‘Here to demand change’
As protests have been consistent in metro Atlanta for more than two weeks, they continued in other parts of the city.
In Roswell, hundreds of people marched through downtown against racism and police brutality. The march was led by the city’s police chief, James Conroy, and Lee Jenkins, senior pastor of Eagles Nest Church in Alpharetta.
The marchers included U.S. Rep. Lucy McBath, a Democrat who represents the area. McBath said the recent deaths that have sparked the protests reminded her of her son’s death, which she described as racially motivated.
The congresswoman called this “a historical reckoning moment for America.”
“We must be fully committed, not fair-weathered” to addressing these issues, McBath told the crowd in a speech beforehand.
Roswell Mayor Lori Henry told the crowd her city and others must accept and address being built on laws, policies and practices that systematically oppressed African Americans.
“These vestiges of racism still taint our system,” she said.
The marchers returned City Hall, where many posed for pictures in front of a long “Black Lives Matter” sign.
Roswell resident Karen Bevan, 67, learned about the march on Facebook.
“I just want to be here to demand change in a peaceful way,” she said.
#rayshardbrooks black man murdered by police in Atlanta!!! This is why we cant let up!— Black Nationalism Organization (@KAttitude281) June 13, 2020
So after all the protesting, discussions, videos, etc. We’re still waking up to NEW stories of black men killed by the police.— UrAvgConsumer (@UrAvgConsumer) June 13, 2020
Please don’t let up the pressure y’all. The racism in this country is deep rooted but we have to work towards something better. #rayshardbrooks