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Emily Jones / GPB News

As Georgia’s legislative session resumes, some state lawmakers want to repeal the state’s citizen's arrest law. It has come under scrutiny following the killing of black jogger Ahmaud Arbery by white men who said they suspected him of alleged break-ins in their neighborhood. 

Screenshot courtesy City of Atlanta

Saying there is a "fierce urgency within our communities" to address police reform, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms on Monday announced a series of measures aimed at changing police policies on the use of force.

The mayor made the move after the city erupted this weekend following the fatal police shooting of Rayshard Brooks, a 27-year-old black man who was gunned down in a Wendy's parking lot after a scuffle with police.

Inside the Gold Dome, Georgia lawmakers returned on Monday without the loud, rushed fanfare that usually marks legislative sessions and settled into a quiet, post-pandemic new normal.

But, outside the concrete steps, thousands of protestors joined an NAACP-led march for racial justice.

Screenshot from Atlanta Police Department

The family of a black man killed in a scuffle with Atlanta police outside a fast food drive-through is pleading for nonviolent protests and policy changes to end future deaths in police custody.

About 20 relatives of 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks told a news conference Monday he was a loving father with a big heart who loved to dance. 

Stephen Fowler/GPB

Hundreds of protesters on Monday marched through the streets of downtown Atlanta and gathered at the Capitol calling for social justice reform following the latest police killing and demanding better voting rights after last week’s problem-filled primary.

The protest came as lawmakers returned to the Capitol for the final days of the 2020 legislative session following a three-month hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Liz Fabian

The thought of taking away an historic downtown church from its congregation alarmed Macon-Bibb County Commissioner Virgil Watkins.

Once Watkins learned the Fulton Baptist Church is still active at 506 Hawthorne St., he could not support recently revealed plans to convert it to apartments.

“You lost me at the point of where you were talking about an occupied church that’s operating on Sunday,” Watkins told Mayor Robert Reichert during last week’s committee meetings via Zoom conference call.

Shaun Krisher

Gov. Brian Kemp has issued a new executive order that paves the way for the reopening of the state's music venues after months of being shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. Josh Antenucci, a managing partner at Atlanta's Center Stage venue, said he still wants to be cautious.

Rickey Bevington / GPB News

Monday on Political Rewind, more pain last weekend as protests broke out across Georgia following the death of 27- year-old Rayshard Brooks at the hands of police. 

Our panel discussed the latest conversations surrounding police brutality and systemic racism as national attention returned to Atlanta in wake of the fatal police shooting.

Credit Tristan Smith

Donna Lowry

When the Georgia General Assembly reconvenes on Monday following a three-month suspension, lawmakers will wrestle with a state reeling from massive pandemic-related revenue losses and weeks of protests over racial injustice.


Police body and dash camera videos show two Atlanta police officers having a cordial conversation with Rayshard Brooks in the minutes before the fatal shooting in a Wendy’s parking lot.

At one point, Brooks even told an officer that his daughter’s birthday was the day before.

Brynn Anderson/AP

Residents of Atlanta grappled Sunday with a city roiled by the fatal police shooting of 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks and protests that resulted in the burning down of the Wendy’s where Brooks was killed in the parking lot.

The charred remnants of the Wendy’s continued to smolder Sunday.

Atlanta Police Department

An Atlanta police officer has been fired following the fatal shooting of a black man and a second officer was placed on administrative duty.

The move announced by police early Sunday follows the Saturday resignation of Atlanta's police chief following the killing of 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks. 

Atlanta Police Department

A 27-year-old man was shot and killed by Atlanta police after a struggle with officers in the parking lot of a Wendy’s Friday night. The fallout was immediate: Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced Saturday that Police Chief Erika Shields agreed to step down and called for the officer involved in the shooting to be immediately fired.

Image shared with Project Row Houses by a Third Ward resident and made available online in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.

In 2002, On Second Thought host Virginia Prescott recorded stories of residents from the Houston neighborhood where George Floyd grew up. Virginia reflected on the rich cultural legacy of the historically African American community. 


George Floyd was laid to rest in Pearland, Texas earlier this week. He was buried next to his mother, known as “Miss Cissy” in Houston’s Third Ward, where Floyd grew up. Beyoncé and Solange Knowles were also raised in the neighborhood. So was the actor Phylicia Rashad, the director and choreographer Debbie Allen, and musicians Samuel John “Lightnin’” Hopkins and Jason Moran. 



Ragan Clark / AP Photo

In the weeks since protests against police brutality began in Minneapolis, calls to reform, defund or abolish the police have been escalating. Demands for reform or cuts to police budgets aren’t new among activists, but a pledge by the Minneapolis City Council to “dismantle” the police department is unprecedented. The mayors of Los Angeles and New York City have also announced that they would both divert city funds from police departments to social service budgets.

Practically speaking, what would it mean to “defund” the police? On Second Thought sat down with Cedric Alexander, former police chief of DeKalb County, and Michael Leo Owens, associate professor of political science at Emory University, to dissect the history and meaning behind the language of the protest movement.

Photo Illustration by Josh Begley for Type Investigations

While protests set off by the killing of George Floyd show no signs of letting up, another quieter protest has been stirring at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Irwin County, Georgia. 

There, a group of detainees staged a hunger strike and protest over video chat to raise the alarm over a lack of precautions against the spread of COVID-19 inside the detention center.

Mike Stewart / AP

The Carter Center says now is the time to look closely at how insurance companies cover mental health treatment.

The 2008 Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act requires insurers to cover illnesses of the brain in the same way as illnesses of the body, but it’s not enforced in Georgia, Helen Robinson with The Carter Center said.

In the weeks since protests against police brutality began in Minneapolis, calls to reform, defund or abolish the police have been escalating.


These demands aren’t new among activists; however, responses from local governments across the country committing to redirect police funds or even “dismantle” police departments have been unprecedented. We break down reasoning, history and motivations behind the push to change how policing operates nationwide.




Starbucks is creating its own Black Lives Matter shirt for employees to wear if they choose.

The move comes after the coffee chain reportedly initially banned employees from wearing Black Lives Matter gear. 

John Bazemore / The Associated Press

In the wake of George Floyd's death and the nationwide protests that it sparked, changes to how America polices its citizens could be on the way. Two weeks ago, protesters gathered in Atlanta. What began as a peaceful demonstration escalated into violence.  

Morehouse School of Medicine

Morehouse School of Medicine is getting some help from Google to figure out why the COVID-19 pandemic is disproportionately affecting minority communities.

The tech conglomerate is awarding a $1 million grant to Morehouse's Satcher Health Leadership Institute to help the school study the impact that the coronavirus outbreak is having on different racial communities.

Wikimedia Commons

Friday on Political Rewind, the state legislature returns Monday to finish up the session. How is recent news likely to shift business down at the Capitol building?

And, the fallout from Tuesday's chaotic primary election continues with county and state officials pointing fingers at what they say was at issue.

Fulton County Sheriff's Office

Atlanta police say the man charged with striking an officer while riding an ATV did so on purpose.

Police said 42-year-old Avery Goggans tried to run over two police officers before he struck and seriously injured Officer Maximilian Brewer May 30, during protests downtown.

Stephen Fowler/GPB

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is lifting more health-related restrictions stemming from COVID-19.

The Republican governor signed an order Thursday allowing spectator sports and live performance venues to reopen and conventions to resume on July 1, subject to some restrictions. 


Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Jon Ossoff said state and county election officials should resign after Tuesday’s election drew national outrage and reports of long lines, struggles with new voting machines and concerns over unprocessed and undelivered absentee ballots.

Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter / Facebook

The Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter in Perry will reopen for business with new guidelines on July 1, officials announced in a press release on Thursday.

Fort Gordon Facebook

President Trump has shut down any discussion about the potential renaming of 10 different Army bases, including two in Georgia, that currently have Confederate namesakes.

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

All eyes were on Georgia’s election Tuesday, and not in the way officials hoped.  In parts of metro Atlanta, voters waited more than four hours in line as some polling places had issues with a new $104 million dollar voting system.  Now, both Democrats and Republicans want answers about what happened and what can be fixed before November.

Ellen Eldridge / GPB News

A diverse chorus of voices calling for justice and an end to police brutality continues in many cities across the nation. The protests follow the death of George Floyd, a black man killed by a white Minneapolis police officer.

And in some places, these protests are being led by white people. That has many asking just what role, if any, do white people have in the Black Lives Matter movement.