15-Year-Old Texas Teen Killed By Police While Leaving House Party
It’s 2017 and unfortunately unarmed Black children are still getting shot by the police. On Saturday, 15-year-old Jordan Edwards of Balch Springs, Texas was fatally shot in the head by a police officer armed with a rifle.
The confrontation began Saturday night around 11 PM when police officers were called a house party on the 12300 block of Baron Drive due to the suspicion there was underage drinking. While inside the house, gunshots rang off and the cops ran outside.
Edwards and his friends were in a car leaving the party after they heard gunshots. Thinking they were the car that fired the gunshots, a cop shot Edwards through the passenger side window.
The police’s first report said the car full of teens was driving backward down the street fleeing them. After reviewing body cam footage, Police Chief Jonathan Haber, said the teens were driving away from police.
Edwards was a freshman at Mesquite High School. The medical examiner ruled his death a homicide, but it doesn’t mean charges will be filed. The Dallas County Sheriff’s Department and the district attorney’s public-integrity unit are investigating the shooting.
According to the Edwards’ family attorney, Lee Merritt, the teenager and his four friends heard gunshots and decided to get in the car and leave the party. They heard cursing and then three shots were fired into the car. Merritt says Edwards and his friends were not the ones police thought fired the shots and had not been drinking.
“We’ve heard excuses before in the past: You know why it happens, because the dads aren’t present. That excuse isn’t here. Or the kid was violent. That excuse isn’t present here.”
The officer who fired the shot has not been named and is on administrative leave. Edwards’ parents are calling for the officer to be arrested.
During a news conference on Monday, with Edwards’ parents, Charmaine and Odell, sitting next to him, Merritt called for justice.
“We’ve heard excuses before in the past: You know why it happens, because the dads aren’t present. That excuse isn’t here,” said Merritt. “Or the kid was violent. That excuse isn’t present here.”
The Dallas County District Attorney’s office released a statement saying they will independently investigate Edwards’ shooting.
Police Chief Haber spoke of Edwards’ death saying, “My heart just gets beat. If there’s something to be learned here, we can all learn it together and move forward together and find solutions how to fix what the problem is.”
It’s beyond clear the officer who shot Edwards didn’t follow any type of protocol or police training. How do you just shoot into the passenger side of a car that you think is where gunshots came from? The police officers would have been better off just pulling the car over and checking for any weapons. Now, parents have to bury their child all because an officer went against his training.