Rayshard Brooks is being laid to rest with a home going ceremony in one of Atlanta’s most historic churches … and TMZ is streaming the service live.
The procession is getting underway Tuesday morning at the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once served as co-pastor for years. Rayshard’s casket actually arrived at the church on Monday for a public viewing ahead of Tuesday’s funeral service.
His golden casket was brought in by pallbearers wearing “Here 2 Serve” t-shirts. During the viewing, his casket was open, and his widow, Tomika Miller, reached out to touch her husband at one point.
As for Tuesday’s ceremony, it’s meant to be a more private affair with some noteworthy speakers … including MLK’s daughter, Rev. Bernice A. King, as well as Rev. Raphael G. Warnock — the senior pastor at Ebenezer Baptist, who’s supposed to deliver the eulogy.
On Friday, June 12, Rayshard was approached by two APD officers after he was found asleep in his car and partially blocking the line at Wendy’s drive-thru. After a lot of cordial back-and-forth interaction, for about 30 minutes, the cops tried to handcuff Rayshard place him under arrest.
When Rayshard resisted, a struggle ensued, and he broke free with one of the officers’ tasers … which he pointed back at them as they gave chase. Officer Garrett Rolfe then opened fire and struck Rayshard twice in the back. He also allegedly kicked him after he was down.
Rayshard later died from his injuries — and the Wendy’s where and the officers tussled was burned to the ground the next day as intense protests sprung up in Atlanta.
The Fulton County D.A. announced murder charges against Officer Rolfe. His partner, Devin Brosnan, faces less severe charges … aggravated assault, specifically. Both men have since turned themselves in for booking. Brosnan, for his part, has denied wrongdoing.
If Rolfe is convicted, the death penalty would be on the table for sentencing.