Despite calls for an independent prosecutor in the trial of two Atlanta Policemen accused of murdering a man who engaged them during a DUI stop, Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said he will not recuse himself from the case.
Former Atlanta Police Officers Garrett Rolfe and Devin Brosnan, who were charged for shooting Rayshard Brooks -who became violent while being taken into custody, fought officers and commandeered a less-lethal device- will be at the mercy of Howard, who has been accused of turning the matter into both one of politics and race.
“You don’t do it for politics,” US Representative Doug Collins (R-Georgia) told a group of several hundred officers and police supporters on Saturday morning. “Your job is to find justice for everyone.”
According to CNN, Howard has refused to recuse himself, despite being given the option to do so in a case where he has been speculated to have a particular agenda.
“When the facts are present in a homicide case, it is my duty as District Attorney to move forward even when the case involves a police officer. No, I will not step aside,” he said. “It is my plan to continue to charge cases based upon the facts rather than the rantings of groups or individuals whose ideals are inconsistent with the principles of justice and racial equality.”
Collins is prepared to take it to the next level, and has asked Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr to appoint an independent district attorney.
Howard, who faces re-election soon, has been embroiled in scandal after Approximately 80 percent of the $250,000 given to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office for crime prevention in low-income neighborhoods ended up in his own bank account.
Despite this, Howard has referred to the scandal as an “administrative matter,” and has dismissed the bringing up of the scandal as a smear campaign of sorts.
Meanwhile, Howard seemingly takes pride in being hard on law enforcement within his area of responsibility.
“People want to be safe and I’ve already proven I can do that,” Howard said. “We have prosecuted, for instance, more law enforcement officers who committed crime than any other office in the country.”
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