The Georgia Bureau of Investigation issued its initial statement on the shooting of a man by a Cobb County officer during a traffic stop on I-75 near Delk Road Wednesday night.
The statement reads as follows:
“Marietta, GA (March 9, 2023) – The GBI is investigating an officer involved shooting in Marietta, Cobb County, GA. The Cobb County Police Department (CCPD) requested the GBI conduct an independent investigation on March 8, 2023. One man was shot and is in stable condition. No officers were injured in this incident.
“Preliminary information indicates that at 10:22 p.m., a CCPD officer stopped a car on I-75 southbound near Delk Road. During the traffic stop, the officer saw the driver, identified as Kenny Ezekiel, 31, of Atlanta, with a gun in his waistband.
“The officer told Ezekiel not to reach for the gun. Ezekiel pulled the gun from his waistband and the officer shot him. Immediately following the shooting, Ezekiel threw his gun out of the driver’s side window, which landed on the interstate. Ezekiel was taken to a local area hospital.
“The GBI will conduct an independent investigation and once complete, will be given to the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office for review.
“This is the 18th officer involved shooting the GBI has been requested to investigate in 2023.”
The GBI’s role in officer-involved shootings
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation routinely investigates the shooting of individuals by police officers, as well as any time an officer discharges a firearm while on duty, at the request of the police agency involved in the shooting.
Natalie Ammons, the Deputy Director of the GBI’s Office of Public Affairs explained to us how the system works.
Police agencies are not required to request outside investigation of officer-involved shootings, and there is no formal agreement between the GBI and local police departments.
But police agencies make the request so that an independent agency does the investigation in an incident involving their own officers.
The investigations are carried out by Special Agents in a regional office within the area where the police agency is located. Cobb County, and much of the rest of metro Atlanta, is in the GBI’s Region 10, based in Conyers.
In Region 10, officer-involved shootings and corruption investigations are the primary investigations Special Agents do, while in more rural areas with fewer police resources the agents handle a wider range of criminal investigations.
There is no special unit or division that conducts the investigation of officer-involved shootings.
The announcements of the investigations can be found at the GBI’s press release web page.