The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Rayshard Brooks:
Another Victim of Police Murder

Jun 29, 2020

More than two weeks into a widespread protest movement against police brutality and racism following the murder of George Floyd, an Atlanta cop shot and killed another black man, Rayshard Brooks.

A Wendy’s employee called 911 to report Brooks was passed out in his car in the restaurant’s drive-thru. One cop, Devin Brosnan, talked to Brooks and got him to pull over to a parking spot. A second cop, Garrett Rolfe, arrived and put Brooks through a series of sobriety tests. When Brooks failed a breathalyzer test, Rolfe decided to arrest Brooks. Brooks, 27 and a father of four who had spent two years in prison and had difficulty finding work, knew that an arrest would send him back to prison. He attempted to break free from the cops and flee.

In the scuffle, Brosnan attempted to taser Brooks, but Brooks took the taser, fired it once and ran. While he was fleeing Rolfe fired his own taser at Brooks, who fired Brosnan’s taser one more time at Rolfe from 18 feet away.

Rolfe then took out his gun and shot Brooks twice in the back. Surveillance video shows Rolfe kicking Brooks and Brosnan standing on him after he was shot. Only after two minutes did Rolfe attempt medical treatment on Brooks, who later died.

Why in the world does a black man falling asleep in a fast-food drive-thru have to end with him being shot to death?

There were plenty of ways the murder of Rayshard Brooks could have been avoided. The Wendy’s employee could have enlisted help in getting Brooks to move rather than calling the cops. The cops could have taken Brooks’ keys and offered to call someone to pick him up. When Brooks fled, the cops could simply have let him run and picked him up later. They had his car, knew his name, and had him on video.

When it comes to the black population, cops are conditioned to shoot first and ask questions later. From past experience, they know they can get away with murder, because the laws and the judicial system protect them.

This is yet another racist murder by the cops, and understandably spawned additional protests. Only now are cases like this being brought to light, largely because they’ve been caught on cellphone video. The two cops were finally charged in this case, but only after the Georgia Bureau of Investigation took it over.

Without the protest movement continuing in the streets, these cops would likely have been let off once again.