The District Attorney who charged police officer Garret Rolfe with “felony murder” for shooting Rayshard Brooks after Brooks attacked officers, stole their taser, and shot the taser at them twice, and gave one officer a concussion, is in trouble today.
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard was already under criminal investigation for allegedly funneling money — $140,000 — from his non-profit to his pocket. He is also under investigation for sexual harassment.
Today, Howard is in trouble for allegedly breaking the law as he rushed to charge two police officers in the Rayshard Brooks case. He illegally obtained subpoenas.
Howard issued grand jury subpoenas directing the Atlanta Police Department to turn over its “open investigation regarding Garrett Rolfe and the use of force incident.” Fox 5 Atlanta reports:
The subpoena required that the documents be turned over for the “Grand Jury, June/July term on the of 14th day of July.” Other grand jury subpoenas were issued for phone and surveillance camera videos.
Fox 5 notes, however, that these grand jury subpoenas were issued while the grand jury was suspended. The grand jury “had been suspended on March 13 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The issuing of grand jury subpoenas while there is no grand jury could be “an ethical or possibly criminal issue,” according to legal experts who spoke with the Fox 5.
Howard charged the officers without even waiting for the Georgia Bureau of Investigations to complete their probe of the incident.
Gable Cino, who is a law professor that specializes in prosecutorial misconduct, told the outlet, “It would be a violation of criminal law to make a knowingly false statement or misrepresentation in the subpoena which is a document that has been issued.”
The GBI said they are aware and are looking into it.