Angry crowds protesting the racially charged shooting of Rayshard Brooks, a 27-year-old father of four from Atlanta, also shut down an interstate highway.
Crowds of several hundred had gathered outside the fast-food restaurant all day Saturday, but began breaking windows of the establishment after sunset, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. A fire started inside at around 9:30 pm., according to the paper.
As smoke billowed from the restaurant, some protest organizers encouraged demonstrators to go home, but police moved in to make arrests, the outlet reported. Brooks was fatally shot by an Atlanta police officer during a struggle after he failed a sobriety test in the Wendy’s parking lot.
The confrontation was filmed by civilian witnesses and also recorded by surveillance cameras.
Authorities said Brooks had taken an officer’s taser during the scuffle and had attempted to flee — assertions backed by the video footage.
Enlarge Image As he ran away, police said Brooks turned back to point the taser at an officer, at which point the cop fatally shot him.
The surveillance footage appears to show the Taser in Brooks’ hand firing on the other cop, who collapses briefly against a car. Three shots then ring out and Brooks collapses to the pavement.
The city’s chief of police, Erika Shields, resigned earlier Saturday. The cop who opened fire was fired by the Atlanta Police Department Saturday night, a move earlier urged by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.