A Texas police officer shot and killed a teenager when he fired at a car the boy was riding in Saturday night, but what really happened remains unclear.
According to Balch Springs Police, officers responded to a report of drunk teens walking around a neighborhood. Police say they heard gunshots while they were investigating. An “unknown altercation” then broke out, and Haber says a car backed towards officers “in an aggressive manner.” One officer fired his weapon at the vehicle, striking 15-year-old Jordan Edwards, a freshman at Mesquite High School. Edwards was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Attorney Lee Merritt, who is representing Edwards’ family, is telling a different story. Merritt told The Washington Post that Edwards and his friends were backing out of a parking space, not aggressively moving towards cops. Edwards, his brother, and three others were at a party, and went to leave when they heard police were coming, Merritt said. As they were getting to their car, they heard gunshots. As they started to drive, shots were fired at them.They didn’t notice Jordan had been hit until they traveled about a block, then they pulled over and flagged down an officer for help. Merritt says three shots hit the car, all coming through the driver’s side window.
Merritt posted on Twitter on Sunday, saying, “There was absolutely no justification for this murder.”
The Dallas County Sheriff’s Department and District Attorney’s Office are now investigating. Merritt says there is police body camera footage of the incident that the Sheriff’s Department now has.
— S. Lee Merritt (@MeritLaw) April 30, 2017
The officer’s identity has not been released, but he has been placed on administrative duty.
Police Chief Jonathan Haber expressed sorrow over what happened. “On behalf of the entire Balch Springs Police Department, and the city of Balch Springs we express our deep, sincere condolences to the family,” Haber said. “We will continue to reach out to the parents and keep them informed as we move forward from this point.”
[Image via Shutterstock]