Dem Rep. Defends Rayshard Brooks, Said Lethal Force Not Necessary Because He Pointed ‘Non Lethal Weapon’ At Police [Opinion]

OPINION | This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.

Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu does not believe the Atlanta Police Department officers responsible for shooting and killing 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks should have used lethal force.

In a series of tweets, the California representative said the victim was running away from the officers and posed no further threat.

When confronted about Brooks’ use of a taser gun, which he shot at one of the officers, Lieu said officers still should not have used lethal force because the taser was a “non-lethal weapon.”

“Taser is a non-lethal weapon. Rayshard was running away. Killing him was unjustified and excessive use of force. That’s why the cop has already been fired, and the police chief resigned,” the lawmaker tweeted.

Lieu’s tweet was in response to Matt Walsh, a conservative commentator, who argued the incident did not represent an example of police brutality.

“A guy was drunk, fell asleep in a Wendy’s drive-thru, cops were called, they tried to arrest him because driving drunk is a crime, he assaults the cops, steals a taster, runs, turns and points the taser at the cops, is shot, and we’re told this is racist police brutality. Come on,” Walsh tweeted.

Walsh responded to Lieu, asking: “Is attacking a cop, stealing his taser, and firing it at him justified? Does the person who acted this way bear any responsibility at all for his own actions?”

Commenting on another tweet by CNN Law Enforcement Analyst James Gagliano, Lieu argued Brooks was attempting to flee and posed no further threat to the officers.

— Advertisement —

Gagliano tweeted:

Other factors to consider for folks asserting “Tasers aren’t deadly force devices”:

If cop incapacitated by Taser (after subject already violent), his own sidearm could be taken, used against him.

Also, no way to know the suspect wasn’t armed with a gun. Especially at night.

But, Lieu said the “argument doesn’t make sense because Rayshard was running away as fast as he could and there was a second officer present.”

“You may want to correct your post since you’re supposed to be an expert,” the congressman snarked.

The officers involved in the incident were identified by the Atlanta Police Department as Officers David Bronsan and Garret Rolfe.

“Officer Bronsan has now been placed on administrative duty and Officer Rolfe has been terminated,” ABC News reports.

Here’s how some other people online responded to Lieu: