Family want officer who shot black teen charged with crime

Family want officer who shot black teen charged with crime

BALCH SPRINGS, Texas - Police in this Dallas suburb said Tuesday night that they fired officer Roy Oliver for a violation of department policy after he shot and killed Jordan Edwards, a 15-year-old boy riding in the passenger seat of a auto that was driving away from a house party.

Officer Roy Oliver of the Balch Springs Police department in suburban Dallas fired at a vehicle Jordan Edwards was riding in with his two brothers and friends.

Balch Springs police spokesman Pedro Gonzalez said that officers were searching for the house's owners when shots were allegedly heard, which they said created chaos right before Edwards was shot.

According to Balch Springs Police Chief Jonathan Haber, Oliver said he fired at the vehicle as it was reversing toward him in "an aggressive manner".

In a press conference Monday, Haber revealed that after viewing the officer's body cam footage, he discovered the vehicle was actually driving away from the officers as Oliver fired, not toward him as the former officer first stated.

" 'We can not make any comments at this time, ' she said in a written statement".

The family later said that while they are grateful that Oliver has been fired, "there remains a long road ahead". The Dallas Sheriff's Department and the Dallas County district attorney's public integrity unit have launched two separate criminal investigations into Oliver, according to The New York Times.




Lee Merritt, an attorney for the Edwards family, said that Oliver fired three shots into the vehicle Edwards was in, based on eyewitness accounts from the other passengers in the auto. Edwards and the others in the auto that he was traveling in were trying to leave the party when Oliver fired into the moving vehicle.

"After Jordan's two brothers, Vidal and Kevon, along with their two friends, were forced to experience this tragedy up close as occupants of the auto, they were immediately treated as common criminals by other officers; manhandled, intimidated and arrested, while their brother lay dying in the front seat", the family said.

A family statement released Tuesday night called for disciplinary action against other officers who "extended this nightmare for those children". The family has called for murder charges to be brought against Oliver.

The Washington Post's officer-involved killings tracker says that Edwards is the youngest of the 333 people killed by officers in 2017.

Merritt said that Edwards' older brother, who was driving the vehicle, was arrested and held overnight by police, the News reported.

"Our family is working hard to deal with both the loss of our beloved Jordan and the lingering trauma it has caused our boys", it said. The TLBC will continue to work in Austin and around the state to build healthy relationships between African American and local police departments.

Oliver shot and killed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards at 11 p.m. on Saturday. "In a rush to get the information out, to be transparent", he said.

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