Rayshard Brooks Was Shot By Police Hours After Celebrating His Daughter's 8th Birthday

by Morgan Brinlee

For Rayshard Brooks' 8-year-old daughter, this last weekend was supposed to be a two-day birthday celebration. Instead, it's the weekend her father was shot by Atlanta police. Brooks was killed hours after celebrating his daughter's birthday with a special father-daughter lunch and manicure, according to an attorney for Brooks' family.

"He was supposed to take his daughter skating today for her birthday," attorney Justin Miller said of Brooks during a Saturday press conference. "When we were over there today she had her birthday dress on because she was waiting for her dad to come pick her up to take her to go skating. Yesterday she and her dad went, she got her nails done and her toes done, they got something to eat."

Brooks, a 27-year-old father of four, was shot while fleeing from Atlanta police after a struggle late Friday. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), officers were called to a Wendy's at 10:33 p.m. following reports of a man asleep in a vehicle in the fast food restaurant's drive thru. When Brooks failed a field sobriety test, officers attempted to place him under arrest, at which point a struggle ensued, GBI said in a press release. During the struggle the responding police officer reportedly deployed their Taser, which Brooks then grabbed.

According to GBI, footage of the incident captured on Wendy's surveillance cameras shows Brooks began to flee the scene after he obtained one of the officer's Tasers. "Officers pursued Brooks on foot and during the chase, Brooks turned and pointed the Taser at the officer," GBI said in a press release. "The officer fired his weapon, striking Brooks."

That officer has since been fired while another officer involved in the incident has been placed on administrative duty, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Erika Shields, Atlanta's chief of police, has also resigned from her post in the wake of Brooks' killing, The New York Times reported.

Brooks leaves behind a 13-year-old stepson and three daughters who range in age from 8, 2, and 1 years old, according to CNN. On Saturday, attorneys for Brooks' family said the family still tried to celebrate Brooks' eldest daughter while grappling with her father's death.

"They had a birthday party for," Miller told reporters Saturday. "An eighth birthday today with cupcakes, while we were sitting there talking to her mom about why her dad's not coming home. That’s the part of it that we see every day that everybody doesn't see. And that’s the part that just, it hits you right [in the heart]. It's terrible."