Several Atlanta Police Department officers reportedly walked off the job in multiple zones Wednesday afternoon in reaction to the charges brought against two former officers involved with the death of Rayshard Brooks, who was shot during a DUI arrest last week.
The APD denied that the walkouts occurred in “each zone,” but admitted the department was “experiencing a higher than usual numbers of call outs.”
What are the details?
Walkout rumors began swirling on social media almost immediately after Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard announced that former APD Officer Garrett Rolfe would be charged with felony murder and a slew of other charges, and that former Officer Devin Brosnan would be charged with aggravated assault as a result of the fatal shooting of Brooks.
Blaze Media’s Steve Deace reported receiving an email from an Atlanta police officer that read, “Atlanta police officers are refusing to answer the radio and walking off the job. The county can go screw themselves. If you want a society without police we’ll give you one. Let it burn!”
Fox Nation host Johnny (Joey) Jones also shared a private message he received on Twitter that claimed, “No one is talking about this right now, but two zones (3 and 6) of officers in Atlanta just walked out in response to the charges Howard just brought. I worked for APD and still have friends there. I imagine you might too. That’s zones 1, 3, 4, and 6 out now.”
Shon Gables, a reporter from WGCL-TV in Atlanta, tweeted that “Sources confirm Atlanta Police officers in zone 6 have walked out. Sources say they drove back to their precinct, turned in their keys and went home. Officers in zone 3 are allegedly doing the same.”
The ADP issued the following statement to TheBlaze’s request for comment: “Earlier suggestions that multiple officers from each zone had walked off the job were inaccurate. The department is experiencing a higher than usual number of call outs with the incoming shift. We have enough resources to maintain operations & remain able to respond to incidents.”
According to local site Decaturish.com, the southeast regional director of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers confirmed that officers from zones 3 and 6 walked off the job. Vince Champion told the outlet, “The union, we would never advocate this. We wouldn’t advocate a blue flu. “
Champion added, “We don’t know the numbers. Apparently we’re learning that command staff are asking outlying counties for support and aren’t getting it.”
Gables later reported on the ADP’s denial while adding, “Mayor @KeishaBottoms talking about the walkout on CNN right now. Reports suggest APD reached out to Gwinnett Cobb, and Clayton for help tonight and they all said no.”
During Brooks’s arrest, he attempted to flee after taking Brosnan’s Taser. Rolfe ran after Brooks, and shot him during the pursuit after Brooks attempted to use the stun gun on the officer.