Officer in murder case bailed despite widow’s plea

Rayshard Brooks, 27, the father of three daughters and a stepson, was killed on 12 JuneImage copyright
Reuters

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Rayshard Brooks, 27, the father of three daughters and a stepson, was killed on 12 June

A judge has granted bail for an ex-Atlanta police officer charged with killing an African-American man in a restaurant car park earlier this month.

Garrett Rolfe, now free on a $500,000 (£403,000) bond, faces 11 charges, including murder, for the death of Rayshard Brooks, 27, on 12 June.

Mr Brooks’ widow implored the judge to not grant bail, arguing Mr Rolfe was a danger to the community.

Mr Brooks’ death fuelled anti-racism protests across the US.

He was shot while fleeing Mr Rolfe and another white officer. Mr Brooks had just failed a sobriety test. As the officers tried to arrest him, he punched Mr Rolfe, snatched his partner’s Taser and then fired the stun gun towards Mr Rolfe as he gave chase.

Tomika Miller, Mr Brooks’ widow, spoke at the bond hearing on Tuesday via video.

Through tears, she told Fulton County Superior Court Judge Jane Barwick that Mr Rolfe “has already shown he’s a danger to the community”.

“My husband did not deserve to die, and I should not live in fear while waiting for the man who killed my husband to be tried in court.”

Judge Barwick thanked Ms Miller for her bravery but said Mr Rolfe was not a flight risk and that she did not believe he posed a danger to the community.

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