June 19, 2020 | 10:22pm
This body cam screengrab from the Atlanta Police Department shows Rayshard Brooks speaking with Officer Garrett Rolfe before his death.
A New York City police union wants to know how cops should respond to the threat of being tased after an officer in Atlanta was charged with murder for fatally shooting Taser-wielding Rayshard Brooks last week.
The Sergeants Benevolent Association penned a letter to NYPD Commissioner Dermott Shea Friday asking for clear guidance should a similar situation arise.
Currently, NYPD officers are trained that deadly physical force is acceptable when staring down a Taser.
“We respectfully request that the department issue a clear directive answering the following question: if threatened with the use of a [conducted electrical weapon] or Taser, are officers authorized to use deadly force to protect themselves and/or others?” wrote SBA President Ed Mullins.
Brooks, 27, was shot by Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe during a foot chase following a field sobriety test in the parking lot of a local Wendy’s restaurant last Friday.
Rolfe and a second officer, Devin Brosnan, chased Brooks after he grabbed one of their tasers and ran off.
Rolfe fired his gun, striking Brooks in the back as Brooks turned and pointed the stolen Taser back at him.
“While every case in which an officer employs deadly force has its own unique set of circumstances and legal intricacies, this highly publicized case has raised questions among NYPD officers as to how they should respond if they are threatened with a taser,” Mullins continued.
“Many NYPD officers have learned during their training that they are authorized to use deadly physical force if they are threatened with a Taser.”
Both Atlanta cops involved in the death of Brooks were fired and Rolfe could face a felony murder charge, Fulton County’s top prosecutors have said.
“Guidance and clarification is needed not only for insight regarding the criminal liability of officers moving forward, but for their safety and the safety of everyone involved in these potential situations,” Mullins wrote.
The NYPD did not immediately respond to a request for comment.