police chief in the US city of Atlanta resigned after an officer fatally shot a black man during an arrest , the mayor said Saturday, with the new killing injecting fresh anger into protests against racism and police brutality .
Images on local media showed hundreds of protesters in the streets on Saturday and flames engulfing the Wendy ’s restaurant where 27 – year -old Rayshard Brooks was killed .
The officer who shot Brooks was dismissed Saturday and identified by Atlanta police as Garrett Rolfe . The second officer was placed on administrative duty , according to ABC News.
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms — who has been touted as a potential running mate for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden — earlier announced the resignation of Chief Erika Shields .
Wendy ’s employees called police on Friday night to complain that Brooks was asleep in his car and blocking other customers on the premises , an official report said .
He failed a sobriety test and resisted when police tried to arrest him , the Georgia Bureau of Investigation ( GBI ) said .
Surveillance video showed “ that during a physical struggle with officers , Brooks obtained one of the officer ’ s Tasers and began to flee from the scene ,” the report continued .
“Officers pursued Brooks on foot and during the chase , Brooks turned and pointed the Taser at the officer . The officer fired his weapon, striking Brooks,” it said .
Brooks was taken to hospital but died after surgery , it said , adding that one officer was injured .
An attorney acting for the dead man ’s family said disproportionate force was used in the confrontation.
“In Georgia a Taser is not a deadly weapon — that’ s the law ,” L . Chris Stewart told reporters .
“ Support came , in I think 2 minutes . He would have been boxed in and trapped . Why did you have to kill him ?”
“( The officer ) had other options than shooting a man in the back.”
Brooks has four children, Stewart added and had celebrated the birthday of his eight -year – old girl earlier on Friday .
His death is the 48 th shooting involving an officer the GBI has been asked to investigate this year , according to local newspaper the Atlanta Journal- Constitution . Fifteen of those incidents were fatal .
The unrest comes as the US faces a historic reckoning on systemic racism , with mass civil unrest ignited by the May 25 killing of another African -American man , George Floyd , while in police custody .
Floyd died after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes .
Protests which spread first around the country then the globe , have forced a conversation on the legacies of slavery , colonialism and white violence against people of colour , as well as the militarization of police in America .
Police chief Shields had worked for Atlanta ’s police department for more than two decades.
“Because of her desire that Atlanta be a model of what meaningful reform should look like across this country , Chief Shields has offered to immediately step aside as police chief ,” the mayor said in televised comments .