Prosecutor won't seek charges against troopers in killing of 'Cop City' activist

The family of fatally shot protester Manuel Esteban Paez Terán, also known as Tortuguita, held a press conference in Decatur, Ga, on Feb. 6, 2023, asking for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to release more information on the death of the activist. (Matthew Pearson/WABE)

This story was updated at 2:02 p.m.

The Georgia State Troopers who shot and killed a protester in January near the site of Atlanta’s planned public safety training facility will not be charged.

Stone Mountain District Attorney George Christian released a report and the decision on the January shooting through the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. In it, he named Mark Lamb, Jonathan Salcedo, Bryland Myers, Ronalda Kegel, Royce Zah and Jerry Parrish as the state troopers who shot and killed Manuel Perez Teran. 

Parrish was the trooper shot on the scene. He received emergency surgery at Grady Hospital to remove a bullet near his spine.

The six state troopers shot Teran more than 50 times while clearing out protestors who had set up camp in a forest next to the construction site. 

Critics have protested for years against the planned 85-acre, $90 million police and fire training facility, dubbing it “Cop City.” 

The report said state troopers asked Teran to leave, fired pepper spray balls, then in response to gunshots, fired into Teran’s tent. The district attorney said in the report because troopers feared for their lives, they used appropriate force.

The troopers were not wearing body cameras, but other law enforcement in the area were. Their cameras recorded audio of the shooting. That audio will not be released, and no further information regarding the report will be released in the near future.