ATLANTA (CBS46) -- Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields resigned her position Saturday afternoon, less than 24 hours after an APD officer shot and killed Rayshard Brooks after a struggle in the parking lot of a fast food restaurant on the city's south side.
The shooting death, partially captured on multiple cameras, showed Brooks struggling with officer before he wrestled away a stun gun. Brooks then began to run. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said Brooks made it just a little way before he allegedly turned towards officers with the stun gun raised and an APD officer shot and killed him.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said in a Saturday press conference the decision to resign was former Chief Shields' and the mayor said she accepted the resignation.
"Because of her desire that Atlanta be a model of what meaningful reform should look like across this country, Chief Shields has offered to immediately step aside as police chief so that the city may move forward with urgency and rebuilding the trust that is desperately needed throughout our communities,” Mayor Bottoms said Saturday.
Mayor Bottoms said the former chief will remain with the city in a role that has yet to be determined. Bottoms said the officer who fired the shot should be fired.
The former chief's resignation came just hours after the Georgia NAACP called for her to leave her position and capped off a more than two week period in Atlanta that saw peaceful protests, violent protests, two college students violently pulled form a car, multiple APD officers fired and charged for the car incident, and now a deadly police-involved shooting.
The incident involving two college students pulled from a car happened live on CBS46. Cameras captured two students being violently pulled out of their car after being hit with tasers. The footage sparked outrage and two of the officers were fired the next day. Charges were filed a few days later against six officers. Since then, two other officers have been fired for their roles in the incident.
Prior to that incident, on the first night of the protests in response to the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police custody, Sheilds drew praise from some for venturing out into the protests and talking one-on-one with protesters as her officers managed to keep things peaceful.
As the night wore on, Chief Shields went inside as officers tried to get control of what turned into a night of violence from some protesters.
APD will temporarily be headed by former Assistant Chief Rodney Bryant who has been named the interim Chief of Police.
Chief Shields released this statement on Saturday following her resignation:
For more than two decades, I have served alongside some of the finest men and women in the Atlanta Police Department. Out of a deep and abiding love for this City and this department, I offered to step aside as police chief. APD has my full support, and Mayor Bottoms has my support on the future direction of this department. I have faith in the Mayor, and it is time for the city to move forward and build trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve - Chief Erika Shields
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