Police brutality

Police officer charged with murder for shooting 15-year-old Texas boy

Roy Oliver, the police officer who shot and killed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards in a Dallas suburb last Saturday night, is now a wanted man. The Dallas County Sheriff’s Department charged Oliver with murder Friday evening, and issued a warrant for his arrest.

“The warrant was issued due to evidence that suggested Mr. Oliver intended to cause serious bodily injury and commit an act clearly dangerous to human life that caused the death of an individual,” said sheriff’s office spokesperson Melinda Urbina in a statement.

Edwards, who was black, was leaving a house party Saturday evening when Oliver, who is white, opened fire at the car he was riding in. Edwards’ brother was also in the car, sitting only feet from where he was shot.

Oliver, who was then a patrol officer with the Balch Springs Police Department — a 200-strong force for a town about 15 miles outside of Dallas — was one of a number of officers sent to investigate reports of underage drinking at the house party, according to a statement by the Balch Springs police.

Though the department initially claimed that the car Edwards was in had been reversing toward officers “in an aggressive manner,” leading Oliver to shoot at the car, it issued a revised statement Monday saying the car was actually driving away from Oliver when he fired on it. On Tuesday, he was fired from the department.

Edwards’ funeral will be held Saturday. Earlier this week, his family asked that all protests be postponed until after the funeral and that no one try to carry out violence against police officers in retribution for the boy’s killing.

“Not only have Jordan’s brothers lost their best friend; they also witnessed firsthand his violent, senseless, murder,” his family said in a statement. “Their young lives will forever be altered. No one, let alone young children, should witness such horrific, unexplainable violence… What we desire, only second to having our beloved Jordan back, is justice for Jordan.”

Earlier this week, Urbina told VICE News that going through all the evidence from Saturday night would “take a while for the detectives to sift” through. In her Friday statement, Urbina cautioned that the investigation would not end with Oliver’s arrest.

Former Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins told VICE News Tuesday that he hopes “to see justice” in this case.

“Police officers have dubious reputation. They deserve it,” he said. “We need DAs that will make sure they do their jobs and live up to their responsibilities.”

Taylor Dolven contributed reporting.

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