A Georgia police officer is recovering after having an extremely dangerous encounter with rioters this weekend.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Officer Maximillian Brewer was hospitalized after being run over by an ATV during unrest over the police killing of George Floyd — and his attacker was later found to be in possession of a gun, making the incident all the more harrowing.
Social unrest has spread like wildfire throughout the United States after Floyd, an unarmed black man, was killed by Minneapolis police last week.
Although Floyd’s arresting officers have been universally condemned, the protests that have ensued have become violent in locations across the country. In Atlanta, CNN’s global headquarters building was vandalized Friday as demonstrations spiraled out of control.
The following evening, Officer Brewer was working traffic control duty when a man ran him over with an ATV, inflicting “significant” injuries, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“While there, an ATV drove past at a high rate of speed,” the Atlanta Police Department said. “A short time later, the ATV approached the intersection again at a high rate of speed and struck the officer.”
The man who attacked Brewer, since identified as Andy Goggins, was charged with a DUI, as well as serious injury by vehicle, reckless driving, possession of marijuana, and several other traffic charges, according to police. Not only was he intoxicated, but he was also in possession of a firearm at the time, the Journal-Constitution noted.
Mayor slams riots, Trump
Dangerous incidents like these have been far from isolated ones, as police struggle to take back control of the streets in many cities from mobs of rioters, arsonists, and looters. In cities all across America, demonstrators angry over the excessive use of force by police have attacked law enforcement officers with rocks, bricks, and Molotov cocktails.
In New York, several people have been charged for tossing explosives at police vehicles, and thousands have been arrested nationwide for various criminal acts related to the protests, as The Washington Post reports.
For her part, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms (D) has condemned the rioters, even as she also criticized President Donald Trump’s rhetoric on the chaos.
“This is not Atlanta. This is not a protest. This is not in the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. This is chaos,” she said over the weekend, according to The Hill. “A protest has purpose. When Dr. King was assassinated we didn’t do this to our city.”
President Trump has forcefully called on the nation’s governors to “dominate” the streets and restore law and order, CNBC notes.