Release of Body Cam Footage Renews Outrage Over Tasing Death of Atlanta Deacon

November 22, 2023
1 min read
Release of Body Cam Footage Renews Outrage Over Tasing Death of Atlanta Deacon

ATLANTA — The release of body camera footage by the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office has exposed the harrowing details of the August 10 traffic stop that ended in the death of Johnny Hollman, a 62-year-old Atlanta deacon. The footage reveals the fatal encounter with Officer Kiran Kimbrough, who used a Taser on Hollman, leading to his untimely death.

Fatal Traffic Stop

On August 10, Hollman, returning home from church, was involved in a minor car accident. The situation escalated when Atlanta Police arrived, and Hollman, agitated, refused to sign a traffic citation. Officer Kimbrough’s decision to use a Taser during the ensuing altercation had tragic consequences.

The killing, ruled a homicide by the Fulton County Medical Examiner, cited cardiac dysrhythmia due to Taser use as the cause of death. Hollman’s chronic asthma and existing heart conditions exacerbated the situation. Investigations by the APD and GBI scrutinized the actions leading to Hollman’s death.

Kimbrough Fired

Kimbrough was terminated for violating departmental procedures, notably not calling a supervisor to the scene.

Post-incident, APD amended its policies, allowing officers to mark “refusal to sign” on citations, reducing the need for physical arrests.

Mayor Andre Dickens expressed condolences to Hollman’s family and highlighted the policy changes, including the launch of a civilian response unit for low-risk calls and new guidelines for the release of video evidence in use-of-force incidents.

“The ability to change and build a public safety organization in the City of Atlanta that is flexible and able to adjust its procedures in a common-sense manner is of the utmost importance,” Dickens said. “As we move forward, this will include creating the most progressive training curriculum in the nation, which includes learning and practicing de-escalation skills, mental health training, anti-bias training and building relationships with citizens to continue strengthening community trust.”

The video released today is both alarming and disturbing. You may wonder why we have written a story about the release without including the video. The Georgia Sun has opted not to show or link to the body camera footage, acknowledging its disturbing nature and respecting our readers’ choice to seek out such material on their own. While knowledge about the this act of aggression by police is important and should lead to discussion, the video is the type that will traumatize most viewers and that is a choice we are leaving up to each person.

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