Attorney Weighs In On Atlanta Police Chief And The Firing Of 6 Officers Following Protest Incident

Photo taken from police body camera video released by the Atlanta Police Department shows what happened Saturday when Messiah Young and Taniyah Pilgrim were arrested police.

Atlanta Police Department via AP

The six Atlanta police officers facing criminal charges after using tasers on two college students have until Friday to turn themselves in to authorities.

The Saturday night incident in downtown Atlanta was captured on cellphone video. It shows Taniyah Pilgrim and Messiah Young being shocked with stun guns and arrested even though the couple didn’t appear to be aggressive towards the officers.

Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields says the arrests of the officers are politically motivated because Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard is facing two challengers in his re-election bid in the June 9 primary.

In an email to employees, Shields said she never had any discussion with the mayor or with Howard about filing charges against the officers, despite firing them for their actions.

Speaking to WABE’s host of “All Things Considered,” Jim Burress, to share his legal perspective on this is WABE Legal Analyst Page Pate.

WABE’s Maria White Tillman contributed to this story.