The Atlanta police officer (Rolfe) involved in the shooting there was fired without being investigated or suspended pending investigation.

One of my college degrees was in Public Safety Administration. To get this degree, I had to take classes on Administrative Law. One of the topics covered was employment law. Under the Constitution of the United States, the government cannot take any of a person’s property without first allowing due process. There is a Supreme Court case that specifically addresses this situation. We were forced to write a research paper on the case. I am still in a recovery mode from our ransomware attack, so I cannot retrieve the file. The gist of it goes like this:

An employee of the government still has constitutional rights. If your employer (the government) wishes to deprive you of your employment, due process is required. This means that before the employee can be suspended without pay or terminated, there must be an investigation, and the employee is entitled to a hearing in front of the administrative authority (or his appointed representative) where that employee can bring representation, call witnesses, etc..

While the investigation is taking place and before the hearing, many employers do not want the disgraced employee out there in the public, so the employee is usually either assigned some sort of desk duty, or is suspended with pay, pending the outcome of the investigation and hearing.

That did not happen in this case. At the very least, Officer Rolfe has grounds for suing the department for damages, and perhaps will be given his job back, with back pay.

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