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tv   The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  June 13, 2020 5:00pm-6:00pm PDT

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for the same medications as the vet, but up to 30 percent less with fast free shipping. visit today. >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. welcome to viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. this is a special edition of the situation room. let's begin in atlanta, like many cities across the united states. site of 19 days of protests sparked by death of george floyd but today, a fresh round of demonstrations and new frustrations after a black man was shot and killed by police at a wendy's drive through
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restaurant friday night. police responded to calls about a man simply asleep in his car. authorities say that man, 27-year-old rayshard brooks failed a field sobriety test before getting into a struggle with the police officers. cnn obtained eyewitness video of that struggle and are warning to our viewers, this video is disturbing. the footage appears to show police grappling with brooks. georgia officials say during that scuffle, brooks grabbed one of the officer's tasers before breaking free and in this video, you can see the police chase after him. georgia officials released surveillance video of the image and then this is also disturbing. you can see brooks running from police and he seems to point the
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taser in the direction of the police officers before being fatally shot. here's the atlanta mayor, keisha lance bottoms reacting earlier this afternoon. >> i do not believe this was a justified use of deadly force and have called for the immediate termination of the officer. chief shields has offered to immediately step aside as police chief so that the city may move forward with urgency in rebuilding the trust so desperately needed throughout our communities. >> natasha chen in atlanta for us. what can you tell us about this fatal shooting? >> reporter: this is a very tricky situation with the georgia bureau of investigation handling the case. they're going to be gathering all of the facts of the case and then handing it over to the fulton county district attorney's office who, by the
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way, is also doing their own independent investigation. since we last spoke with you, we've moved locations to the place where this happened last night. you can see the wendy's there and now you can see this large crowd that's gathered in the intersection. police have blocked off the roads. earlier, we were seeing everybody raise their arms in solidarity and they are holding signs that say rayshard brooks name wells the names of other people of color who have been killed by police, and i'm actually standing with one protester here, mark odom, an atlanta resident and i understand you have seen the surveillance video released by the georgia bureau of investigation. what do you make of those few seconds where all of this happened? >> i was very disturbed by what happened. this is something that keeps happening over and over again, so we've been protesting about the george floyd and i thought it was going to be a change, however, it wasn't a change. it was still the same old thing
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and i thought the message was clear, but obviously not. we're still not heard. >> reporter: a lot of people are watching this video very carefully, seeing in this case, that it seems as if mr. brooks had turned around and pointed a taser back at police. does this case differ to you in your mind at all from what happened to george floyd or others? >> yes, ma'am. i would say it's because he was fighting back, he was scared for his life. the first thing to do is when people are fighting you, you try to fight back. even though it's authority, but he did try to run. he tried to run away from the situation. they were still tasing him, still trying to cause him harm and try to kill him. so the first natural thing would be to run. >> when you find someone pointing a taser back at police or firing it potentially, i'm sure experts will figure that part out, what would you think police should have done instead of shooting him? >> well, these are trained officers. i'm pretty sure they know plenty of ways to be able to deescalate
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the situation, but however, taking a gun out should have been the last excuse unless he had a gun, but he didn't have a gun. he only had a taser. >> reporter: and what do you think of the atlanta police chief resigning today and the mayor calling for the termination of this officer? >> i think it's a beautiful thing. i think it's great. i think it's fantastic. i think that he should have did it a long time ago, years ago. >> reporter: thank you so much and that's mark odom, one of the protesters here, one of the many people who gathered peacefully this this intersection to continue the movement that started a couple of weeks ago and now at the location where last night, once again, a 27-year-old was shot and killed in the driveway of the wendy's when police were called there for the report of someone sleeping in his vehicle. jbi says, again, he failed a field sobriety test, there was then a struggle over the police taser that witnesses saw mr.
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brooks with the police taser. he took control of that and was running away in the surveillance video with that taser and at one point in the video, is seen turning back around, pointing the taser at police, of course, all of this happening in seconds before police shot him and you can see in the video, very disturbing that he falls in that spot. so wolf, there are a lot of people here very upset about that, very emotional, as you can imagine. >> i can imagine, of course. natasha, we'll get back to you. natasha chen on the scene for us in atlanta. let's bring in our cnn legal analyst joey jackson with us and brian hilg hggins, former polic chief and now professor at the john j. johnson of criminal justice. joey, two newly released videos of the deadly confrontation at the wendy's restaurant last night and i also want to play a slow motion version. watch this because we could see a brooks running and then turning his head back toward the
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police officers to raise the tasered gun. we could see the flare of the taser being fired. what's of the incident that stands out? >> let's talk about the human side and then transition to the legal side. from a human perspective, people are wondering, what is this situation? what's the story? whereas officers are using forces and escalating to such an aggressive posture to deadly force right away. is the suspect seen as a brother in the community, an uncle? is he somebody's father? what is it that's forcing police to use this force? from a human perspective, it gnaws at you to understand why go from zero to 100 in an instant, and i think that human element is what's leading to so many protests across the country. why are people of color seen as less than? why are people of color shot disproportionately, why do people of color have to die? transitioning from that, wolf, to the legal element, you look at three things. number one, the immediate use of
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force. was it necessary under the circumstances? was there an immediate threat of death or serious physical injury that was represented to the officer? number two, was the force by the officer use proportionate to any threat posed and did the officer act reasonably under the circumstances? we could debate those questions day or night but at the end of the day, someone's dead and the community is asking, why and did it have to happen and that's the issue before us now. >> brian, looking at the videos, you've seen the videos now. we've all seen the videos. do you believe the police officer had other options at any point to deescalate the situation and not reach for his gun? >> so this situation actually had begun much before we see the video where the officer is using deadly force. there is an escalation of force. officers are using physical force without any use of equipment and the individual is resisting and he goes beyond resisting. he's actually assaulting police officers.
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he's able to overpower two police officers, and then there's this foot chase, if you will, and then a sudden split second decision of the police officer. that's the key, in that moment, what did the police officer see, think, and feel that caused him to use deadly force? so it is literally a time for us to not rush to judgment, and let this follow out closely to the letter of the law and include all the facts, and i don't know that all the facts are here just yet. >> i want you to listen, joey, to what the georgia bureau of investigation's director vick reynolds said about this video. listen to this. >> we have now seen fullwendy's showing this gentleman entering into the video frame running or fleeing from atlanta police officers. it appears that he has in his hand the taser.
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you could see that at least to the naked eye it appears. he runs a relatively short distance, looks like probably 5, 6, 7 parking space distance and at that point, turns around and appears to the eye that he points the taser at the atlanta officer. at that point, the atlanta officer reaches down and retrieves his weapon from his holster, discharges it, strikes mr. brooks there on the parking lot and he goes down. >> the mayor of atlanta, keisha lance bottoms, joey, want it s officer who killed him, fired. is that an appropriate response or rush to judgment? >> i think the mayor is certainly concerned about the escalation of force. why is it happening and what specifically can be done to lessen it? i think that's a concern. obviously, the facts will play out and we'll determine what specifically happened. you can't condone someone pointing a taser at an officer but does that justify actual
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deadly force? are there other reasonable alternatives to be employed that the person could still be alive and that's the question. so apparently, in the mayor's view, that's not the case. she is, i think, concerned about the community, concerned why this is repeatedly occurring, concerned about why people of color are dying disproportionately and concerned about the escalation and rush to kill as opposed to doing something else and so that's the mayor's call to make. >> brian, what do you think? there's been a bunch of incidents in atlanta, as you know, atlanta's police force has been facing lots of criticism for weeks after that violent approach taken towards two college students, simply sitting inside a car during a george floyd protest. there was another incident where an officer body slammed a woman. do you believe it's appropriate for the police chief to step down right now and for the police officer who shot and killed rayshard brooks to be
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fired? >> i think the firing part was probably a little bit too quick because if it was not done appropriately and even if a court of law finds out this officer did not use the appropriate use of force, there still could be some issues with employment, and that will actually make it even worse. i agree with joey that nerves and feelings are raw. there is tension, not just in atlanta, but the united states. there are issues that have been looked at and are being looked at in atlanta right now. it's there for the mayor to be very concerned, and to take action. i'm a little concerned about the swiftness at which this officer was fired without any due process, and what that could do in the long run in getting any justice. >> brian higgins and joey jackson, both of you guys are going to stand by because the story is not going away but right now, thank you to both of
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you for joining us. we'll continue to monitor the protests unfolding on the streets of atlanta this hour. we've got live pictures from the scene of the deadly encounter outside that wendy's restaurant. much more of our special coverage coming up. we'll be right back. chicago! "ok, so, magnificent mile for me!" i thought i was managing... moderate to severe crohn's disease. yes! until i realized something was missing... you ok, sis? my symptoms kept me- -from being there for my sisters. "...flight boarding for flight 2007 to chicago..." so i talked to my doctor and learned- ...humira is for people who still have symptoms of crohn's disease after trying other medications. and the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief... -and many achieved remission in as little as 4 weeks. humira can lower your ability to fight infections. serious and sometimes fatal infections, including tuberculosis, and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened,- -, as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. tell your doctor... ...if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections...
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has that been enough for you? >> thank you, wolf, for having me on tonight, and quite frankly, no. it's appalling and disrespectful. we are hearing that rumor and we need to know by mayor bottoms what exactly is happening. we demand that shields resignation be complete and entire separation from the city. we will not tolerate any measure to hire her in the city government like the predecessor. all trust has been irreparably broken. this is not isolated incident but a culture continued through the silence and the inaction of our leadership. we know deandre phillips, al alexia, mr. brooks is just the latest name in a long list of history within this city. >> we've all seen the footage, reverend. do you think the police officer shot and killed should actually
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be charged? >> i believe that every single officer should be held accountable. if they took off, we received reports that they turned off and snatched off their body camera. if that is to be the case, we want them all to be terminated as well. that is obstruction of justice, and so it's just unacceptable that we continue to have these kind of things happening in our country. >> what structural reforms would you like to see in atlanta and in fact, in a whole bunch of other cities around the country to prevent these same things from happening. we've got the video to show from over and over and over again. >> two things. one, in the next days, it's going to be critical to pay attention to a very important woman by the name of tiffany robert who is the city of atlanta's co-chair for the center for human rights. she is a trusted community leader and she'll work with apd
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in the city of atlanta to do right not only by conducting a national search for the police chief replacement but making sure the community is all part of the process. secondly, we call on both the mayor and the governor to ensure that those who are protesting and using their constitutional ability and right to assembly, they do not call the national guard and have the kind of barricades and tear gas that we've seen over the past several weeks. >> as you know, reverend, this is all happening as the nation now sees its 19th straight day of protests around the country, calling for an end to police brutality and racism. are you hopeful, are you optimistic about this movement? is it going to result, do you believe, in real change? >> i believe that the power of the people is what keeps us going. people out in the streets that will show up at the march on georgia that we demand that the
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general assembly, that every legislative body in both the city, county, and state and even congress to respond immediately and use the very uprises we're seeing to actually address these problems. we will not compromise. we will not allow these moments to continue on and have no solutions like simply allowing the police chief to go into a smaller role. it's unacceptable and we will not stop. >> james is president of the georgia naacp. thank you for joining us. atlanta is far from the only city here in the united states seeing protests around the country. phoenix is another city, phoenix, arizona, mayor joining us. i want to talk about what's going on in your city, but you know the tough decisions a mayor must make. what's your immediate reaction to what you see unfold in atlanta? the mayor there deciding to replace her police chief and to
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fire that police officer? >> my heart goes out to the family of rayshard brooks and the entire community of atlanta. we know there is so much suffering going on throughout our country but i also feel like we're in a moment of unique change where cities all across the country are coming together and we are going to do better. i know that mayor lance bottoms is committed to doing what is right for her community. she's a passionate advocate for the people she represents. >> she certainly is. let's talk a little bit about what's going on in phoenix right now. i spoke yesterday with the infectious disease expert, dr. anthony fauci, and i asked his thoughts about what's happening in the united states right now but listen to what he immediately said. >> but if you look at just the data, which is the thing that drives it all, if you look at what's going on, for example, in california, if you look at what's going on in north carolina, in arizona, in texas, in places like that, you've got to carefully look at what the
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result is. remember, i'll said and i'll be consistent with it, when you do start moving towards opening up, you are going to see blips of infections. it's the capability that you have and that you've built to be able to very effectively do isolation, identification, and contact tracing. otherwise, you're going to see a little blip turn into something that's more than that. >> so mayor, arizona, you obviously know, one of 14 u.s. states with a record number of new cases. is your beautiful city of phoenix equipped to do what dr. fauci is talking about to fight this virus? >> i believe that our governor reopened arizona before we were ready. we did not meet the white house aiding criteria for 14 days of declining cases and since then, we've really seen troubling trends. this week, our county reported
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27% of the cases we've seen the entire time we've been tracking covid. we've had a 15% increase in hospitalizations since we reopened. we reopened quite quickly. we went straight to packed nightclubs and we're not seeing the amount of masks i would like to see, so i am very concerned. >> because your governor ducey approved dine-in services resuming on may 11th, but several phoenix area bars and restaurants unfortunately had to close once again because of so many positive cases. are you considering actually another wide round of shutdowns in phoenix if the numbers continue to go up, hospitalizations go up at the same time? >> mayors really led the effort in arizona. there were several mayors who did safety protections such as moving restaurants to takeout by executive order. the governor then followed suit and in doing so, preefrmtmpted
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for doing so but if i did, i would follow the center for disease control guidelines. >> what do you expect to see in the wake of memorial day activities, a lot of people out on the streets, in the wake of the george floyd protests we saw lots of people out on the streets as well, many of them not wearing masks and pretty close together? >> we've actually had peaceful protests in phoenix where pretty much everyone is following masking protocols. what we're seeing throughout arizona is increases in every county including counties that have not had protests. i'm concerned we sent a message to our residents that we had defeated covid-19. we have a lot of elected officials going out without masks and acting like we are back to normal. we are not. we need to have those safety precautions including masking and distancing that dr. fauci recommended on "the situation room" for quite a while.
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unfortunately, people have gotten the message that we're okay and we're through this. many people will tell me, well, the flu goes away in the summer, so covid-19 will. i hope that we can send a message as elected officials and all leaders in arizona that covid-19 is spreading. it is concerning, and we should continue the great work we did last month in slowing the spread. >> we're showing our viewers, by the way, mayor, live pictures out of los angeles right now. the protests there clearly continuing. you see a huge, huge crowd that is walking down on the streets of l.a. right now. may mayor, thank you so much for joining us. >> thanks for having me. so as we see protesters gathering this hour, you look at los angeles right now, but in atlanta, we're also waiting to hear from the attorneys representing the family of rayshard brooks, the 27-year-old who was shot and killed by
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way, for a news conference there now representing the family of rayshard brooks, the 27-year-old atlanta man who was shot and killed by a police officer from the atlanta police department last night in a wendy's parking lot. we'll update you on that coming up soon and we also keep a very close eye on new developments as the protests continue to grow in atlanta. meanwhile, no end in sight for
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the pandemic here in the united states. more than 2,066,000 cases and 115,000 confirmed deaths. let's discuss with an emergency room physician for life span hospital and brown university and cnn medical analyst dr. james phillips, a physician, assistant professor at george washington university here at dc. doctor, after a bit of a dip in covid fatalities, last seen days have seen numbers go up. 800 a day, 900 a day. a thousand americans dying each day. how do you react when you hear those numbers? >> wolf, this was so predictable. this is what many of us in the public health and medical world were warning about back in mid may and around memorial day when states started reopening, people stopped wearing masks, people stopped following physical
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distancing rules. this is exactly what we said would happen. two to four weeks after that too early reopening, we would see a surge in cases, in hospitalizations, and then in deaths. it is so disappointing, i hope that the rest of the country can watch these new hot spots, take it as a warning and start following good public health procedures so the rest of the country doesn't get reengulfed by this virus. >> hospitalizations are clearly up in at least 20 states. i want you to listen to what dr. anthony fauci told me here last night in "the situation room." >> when you start seeing more hospitalizations, that's a sure fire sign that you're in a situation where you're going in the wrong direction. when you see more percentage of the tests that are positive and more hospitalizations, that's something that should get you to pause and say, wait a minute, let's rethink this and see where we're going. maybe we need to slow down a little. maybe we need to intensify our
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capabilities to identify isolate and contact trace. we don't want it to get out of hand again. >> so dr. phillips, should we be scaling back on the reopening rather than scaling up? >> some places should. the map that you showed earlier is quite disturbing showing that big swath of red where we're looking at states who have had significant increases in the number of diagnosed cases. and when you look at a state like arizona where they're starting to run short on icu beds, that's of great concern and that should be the ultimate signal to surrounding states including nevada and some of the other more heavy hit states. remember, importantly, this virus, it takes 10 to 12 days to get sick from the time they're enough enough to require the hospital, so what we're seeing is two weeks back in time and
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i'm afraid with the protests that we've had, with the impending political rallies that are being planned, we're going to continue to see a steep increase in even more states. >> we show viewers these live pictures from atlanta, these are protesters clearly a lot of folks are very upset about rayshard brooks, the 27-year-old who was killed by police last night at a wendy's drive through, a wendy's restaurant. as you know, the president is very eager to get back to his big rallies. he'll hold one in tulsa on june 20th, but if you sign up to attend, you have to agree not to hold the trump campaign responsible if you get the coronavirus. from your perspective, doctor, what kind of message is that sending out there? >> i think it's irresponsible to hold large inside events at this point in our country. we have been telling americans for the past three or four months to stay home, to practice
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physical distancing, to wear masks, and to now bring large masses of people together in inside spaces where there's no wind, there's no dissemination of this virus, where if there's one person who's sick, many people are going to get sick. it's frankly, wolf, irresponsible. >> all right, thank you and once again, i want viewers to see these live pictures in atlanta, what's going on. cnn's natasha chen is right there on the scene for us. so update our viewers, natasha. what are you seeing? i don't know if natasha could hear me but you see, there was a police car and police officers trying to get that car out of this area and a lot of protesters were stopped, trying to stop that police car from even moving. you see the police officers now backing away from that scene. this is right outside that wendy's restaurant and some of the folks are actually throwing
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bottled water or whatever towards those police officers but you could see them backtracking right now. this is a very worrisome disturbing development that's unfolding right now. we're watching this very closely. you see the police officers, they're restrained as they back up. trying to get out of the scene. very, very tense scene we're seeing in the aftermath of the police shooting of rayshard brooks, an african-american man, 27 years old. he had been in his car. apparently fell asleep at the drive through and other cars were going around the drive through and eventually, the police showed up. he was inside. they took a sobriety test. he didn't pass that sobriety test, and then all of a sudden, things began to deteriorate quickly when they started to apprehend him and watch what's going on, but this is clearly a tense moment in atlanta right now. the mayor of atlanta, keisha lance bottoms announced she was
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being reassigned and there would be an interim police chief, rodney bryant. i want to bring in mark moore yell right now, the president of the national urban league, former mayor of new orleans. thanks so much for joining us. very tense situation right now. looks like there's smoke coming up, maybe some tear gas just launched now. the folks are not very happy with the situation. what's your thought? >> wolf, what i've learned in the last few hours is this is the third incident in about ten days. questionable incident between african-americans and the atlanta police department. there was the incident that you covered where the two college students were yanked from their car. there was another incident where a woman was thrown to the ground and broke her clavicle, and now this incident. so there's an an accumulation of community frustration. now, from what i saw of the
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incident on tape, there's a big discussion as to what could have been done to deescalate the situation. wolf, i'd go back to the immediate interaction between the officers and the man who was sleeping in the vehicle and who apparently had been drinking. at that point, there was an option that the police department -- >> mark, i want to interrupt for a moment, mark, i want you to stay with us. the lawyers representing rayshard brooks are now speaking. i want to listen in briefly. >> then i could go on and on about d'andre phillips, another murder down here which involved apd, which still hasn't been decided or resolved yet. still has not been resolved here in georgia. i could go on to alton sterling, which we also represent, which
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years later, still has not been resolved. and all of the other cases and what it boils down to, black, white, hispanic, whatever you are, are you not tired of seeing cases like this happen? we see from the protesters. we see from the people in the streets of all races now that people are sick of watching black men murdered. and before we even get into what happened last night, the one thing that nobody can disagree with is that it shouldn't have happened, but it did because the value of african-american males lives in the inner city or wherever doesn't mean too much to officers nowadays. and it's sad. because we look at things not just for the emotional effect of how horrible it is, but legally.
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in georgia, a taser is not a deadly weapon. that's the law. it's not a deadly weapon. i have cases where officers used tasers on victims and they argue with us in court that tasers aren't deadly. that tasers aren't harmful. that's the case law here. that tasers are not deadly weapons, so before we even hear from their lawyers who are going to say the same old thing they always say, you cannot have it both ways. you can't say, he ran off with a weapon that could kill somebody when you say it's not deadly. you can't say you don't have other options. where was he going to go? he was barely jogging away. you could have boxed him in, support came in, i think, two minutes. he would have been boxed in and trapped, why did you have to kill him? was the officer embarrassed he
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got his taser taken? well, let your pride linger. don't pull your gun quickly. was he upset that he lost a little scuffle and out of spite, he shot? we don't know yet. but one thing we do know, he had other options than shooting a man in the back, and we don't want to hear anything about, oh, he even pointed it backwards because it's not a deadly weapon, according to police officers in case law. he wasn't close enough to harm you with it. you could have run him down but instead he got bullets in the back. a man that, earlier that day, was celebrating his daughter's 8th birthday at the arcade. who has three little girls who are 8, 2, and 1 and a stepson who's 13. we saw them play and laugh and be oblivious to the fact that
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their dad was murdered on camera. a scene that we keep repeating. we watch gianna floyd play in houston. oblivious to the fact her dad was knelt on and murdered. how many more examples will it be? the cameras aren't doing it. y'all filming it isn't doing it. covering it isn't doing it. people protesting isn't doing it. what is it going to take? how many more examples are we going to get? i actually thought that we were going to get over all this. i thought this was finally going to start ending with all these changes. what more can i do training-wise?
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they know they shouldn't have done that. do we need to start over and rehire all the officers to retrain them? what other options do we have? the problem is that they've been given leeway to use lethal force far too often and too long. and this is what we're left with. and as we're getting the case, the details are getting more horrific. because there are multiple witnesses out there. we talked to some witnesses today who said that the officers went and put on plastic gloves and picked up their shell casings after they killed him. before rendering aid. we counted two minutes and 16 seconds before they even checked his pulse. and people wonder why everyone's mad. just watch the video as he lays there dying, the officer kicks
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him over and the witness tells us, which we can't see on camera but they filmed it, picked up the shell casings. i wonder why. so that all of you can't know how far away he was when they shot? so that you can't find their positions when they used that weapon? but they appear to care more about covering tracks than providing aid. if allegedly he was taken to the hospital and died in surgery but they didn't give that to him. so we agree with the mayor saying that the officer that fired should be, i mean, that fired his weapon shouldn't terminate. he should also be prosecuted. the family met with paul howard and they opened their investigation. i could even say we want justice but i don't care anymore, i don't know what that is and i've
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been doing this for 15 years. i don't know what it is anymore. is it the chief stepping down? is it getting someone fired? i know this isn't justice what's happening in society right now. it's just not much more we could say or do as a society so people that are refusing change and not understanding why now is the time for complete systemic change. take a look. compare it to the videos online where it was a white individual who had a deadly weapon that wasn't killed, which we've also been looking at today, trying to understand why didn't they get shot. and why did rayshard have to when he was running and that answer, i don't have yet. other than that, it's just
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tiring. and i'm sure everybody is tired of seeing it. we're so concerned about trying to find a vaccine for the coronavirus. the world is pitching in millions and millions of dollars, scientists from around the world are trying to help find a vaccine, but nobody's trying to find a vaccine for civil rights. it's something we're told to wait for, it will come. nobody's trying to find a vaccine for why officers pull the trigger so quick on african-americans. there's no flood of scientists or leadership in this country trying to end that epidemic. but i guess that is because it doesn't hit close to home to the people that care. so once again, and i'll say it as the millionth time, fight for justice. we'll try and get the cop
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arrested or whatever it may be. sue the city and see if they'll settle, i don't know. but we're just tired. and if you don't understand that because you may be a different color, you may be a different gender, you may not be from georgia, then you may be the problem. i think the word that encapsulates everything that chris said to you is empathy. this is all these families are asking for and what we're asking for as representatives of these families. just a little empathy. if this officer today had been a little more empathetic and a bit less scared, then we probably
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wouldn't have a dead client, we wouldn't be here talking to you like we are right now. there are a lot of things, systemic things wrong with policing in this country. and i think that over the past few weeks, we've talked about a lot of them. you've seen a lot of them on tape and like chris said, we're tired. i mean, we'll keep doing this as long as there's a need, but we don't want there to be a need to do this anymore. the first failing that i saw when i saw this tape was training. because just as chris said, if a taser isn't a deadly weapon, then it's not a deadly weapon when i have it, when an officer has it, anyone else has it. when a client has a taser, they're going to say it's a deadly weapon and it's not. there were two officers, one of
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him. and their training failed him. that's number one. number two, leadership failed him. and i don't want to see anyone lose their job, but maybe the police chief needed to resign because whatever they're doing from the top, it's not reaching the bottom. and if they are doing it correctly from the top and that's what they're trying to get across to their officers, then it's because this can't happen again. policing in this country, in this city needs to change to something more empathetic, something more community based. police are necessary, but the way they are policing our communities is wrong, it's causing death, and we're not going to stand for it any more. obviously, you see that the people are not going to stand for it any more. i think a lot of things and a
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lot of these minor changes are happening, because people are scared, they're scared for things, a building or a store. a -- they're scared for a restaurant. but the lives of these people, of our people, of americans, of black people, of human beings, in my opinion are more important than any store or restaurant that is in buckhead or bankhead or anywhere else. that's number two. and the third thing, i'll say is fear. listen. i don't know those who officers personally, right? but just from watching the tape, i could tell that they were scared. and it's understandable. that is a hard profession, policing. but if you have fear, you don't need to be a police officer. if you do not understand the community that you're policing in, you do not need to be a
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police officer. if you are not comfortable with black people, white people, brown, yellow, whatever, you don't need to be a police officer. a police officer is as much of a counselor as they are anything else. and i believe that if we go back to the leadership and training i spoke of earlier, you'll see that these officers aren't taught that. they're taught to crackheads. and when they can't crackheads they are taught to shoot. we can't have that any more. i don't think this is going to end any time soon. and frankly. i want everyone watching, and everyone here to understand we're not asking for protesters not to go out and protest. we need to keep pushing. we need to let everyone know that this is unacceptable and we're not going to just move on to the next tragedy. this probably won't be the last
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tragedy. and that's a sad thing. but we're going to treat every single one like it shouldn't have happened. we're going to go as hard as we can for this one, like we're going for george floyd and his daughter. and like we're going for alton sterling and every other single case, single person that should be here today is not with us -- because at the end of the day. if you look around and you see us, we are white, black, asian, brown, yellow, green, it doesn't matter, we're all people. if we can see that, we don't understand why the police can't see that. and there are some people that have opened their eyes and wokenp, and they see that, we think that's great. we want you to put pressure on the police, put pressure on the governors, put pressure on
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everyone to let them know, you will not take this any more. you're going to stand up. and this is not just black people, because we've been dealing with this our entire lives. this is for everyone else who hasn't been dealing with this, who's dealing with it now, stand up with us, push with us, fight with us, when you see us in minnesota, fight with us. and when you see us here in atlanta and in brunswick, fight with us. because our fight is your fight. this is the united states of america. we're coming up on july 4th and this is going to be a very weird july 4th for a lot of people. very different. because people are coming to the realization that america doesn't mean america for all americans. and that's a problem. so keep pushing, fight with us, and hopefully we'll get some change and this will be the last time we have to have a press conference about a dead black man killed by the police for no reason. thank you. >> another thing -- that some of
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the witnesses said is they didn't do a sobriety test. there was no count to 100 or whatever it is, walk this line. they said that they were just talking. and it seemed to be a decent conversation. and then all of a sudden, one of the officers grabbed him and told him he's under arrest. so this started from nothing. this wasn't a bank robbery in progress or anything violent. they told him he was under arrest, i see they're reporting, oh, it was a suspected dui or he fell asleep blocking the line. he wasn't blocking the line. and they didn't even do a sobriety test from what the witnesses right there said, why was he even under arrest. you want to know how this could have been avoided and all the protests that are going to happen? talk to him? talk, hey, buddy, you fell
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asleep in line, are you okay? why don't you pull your car over there and call an uber? and then you walk over and you leave. why is that so hard for police officers? a conversation. he wasn't doing anything crazy or violent or harming anyone. hey, buddy, i think you've had something to drink maybe, but i guess they didn't feel like doing a sobriety test. pull over there, call an uber, i guarantee you that happens hundreds of times a night in college towns with young white kids or other places in america. but we don't get that benefit of the doubt. not only do officers like that destroy the image of policing, i have always held in high standard even though i'm always going against the officers.
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y'all are starting to break me. you know me well enough to say i have respect for officers, but even i'm starting to lose hope. and that's -- hard. y'all got any questions. it's not much. >> the resignation of the police chief, how does that sit with the team? is that a step in the right direction? >> i don't care. >> chris, the surveillance vi o video, the taser in mr. brooks hand and pointing, why do you think they didn't release that video, and he wasn't going to tell -- >> i think they were just releasing the full surveillance video of the parking lot.
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i'm sure there's more video, like i said, witnesses have video of some of these horrific actions. in that video, you also can silt there and count how long they let that body lay on the ground before touching him or even trying to assist him. the video is helpful for us. it's also helpful to show that they're far apart when he's running and pointing it backwards. taser is not a deadly weapon in georgia, they can't say. it's not like he was running off with a gun. it's not a deadly weapon. i lose cases against officers who use it on my clients because it's not a deadly weapon. and i'm saying that they shouldn't have turn that. you just can't have it both ways. if it's not a deadly weapon. his life was not in immediate harm when he fired that shot. just was not. it wasn't. and i watched one of the most
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conservative police chiefs commentating today, even he said there were other options he could have done and that a taser is not a deadly weapon. ask, is it a deadly weapon? >> the more you find out, the worse it gets. >> there's so many witnesses that saw it. we didn't know they picked up their shell casings before gbi got there to investigate the scene because -- before, i don't know. >> i'm sorry, chris. i haven't seen the video either. is there concrete audio of conversations with law enforcement? >> we haven't gotten all the audio yet. i think the district attorney's office is talking to all these witnesses. >> can you speak to the why? >> there can be a thousand reasons for someone running from the police, right?
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just imagine if you're sleeping in your car because you're trying to drink something off and you get officers knocking on your window hard. the current climate of police officer and black male interaction is not the best. right? that might scare you at that time of night, so yes you stand up and you're talking to them. and they're telling you they want you to do something. that may not be what you want to do at the time. yes, he tried to get away. that's what it looked like, we don't know, because we can't talk to him. it looked like he tried to get away, and they would not let him get away, they were hell bent on stopping him, and they stopped him. yes, getting away from a situation that could be detrimental to you also turned into a another situation that was detrimental to you. it's a no win situation. you can't get out of it, and to that's probably what happened. but like i said, we can't speak to it. >> i always try to


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