Months before Rayshard Brooks was fatally shot by a police officer outside a Wendy's in Atlanta, Georgia, he spoke about his experience with the U.S. criminal justice system and the struggles he faced after being incarcerated, NBC News reports.
Brooks' interview in February 2020 was conducted by Reconnect, a Maine-based public benefit corporation, as part of a project about individuals on probation or parole.
“I just feel like some of the system could, you know, look at us as individuals,” Brooks said. “We do have lives, you know, was just a mistake we made, you know, and, you know, not, not just do us, as if we are animals. You know, lock us away.”
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Brooks said he doesn't think the criminal justice system is fair, noting "some people get a tap on the wrist" while "some people don't."
Brooks also opened up about the emotional toll of being caught up in the system after you have a criminal record. He said being denied employment is a "hard feeling to stomach" when you're just trying to support a family.