Texas Officer Who Shot Jordan Edwards Has Been Fired
The Texas police officer who shot and killed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards has been identified and terminated from his position. Balch Springs police officer Roy Oliver has been fired, the police department announced in a press conference this evening. Oliver had been employed with the department since 2011.
Police Chief Jonathan Haber announced that an internal investigation found that Oliver violated several policies when he fired his rifle into a car of unarmed teens on Saturday, though he did not specify which policies he violated. Oliver has the opportunity to appeal the termination.
The Balch Springs Police Department has been the subject of national controversy after an incident this weekend that left Edwards, who was a high school freshman, dead. Police were responding to reports of underage drinking in a residential neighborhood of Balch Springs when, minutes after arriving on the scene, Oliver fatally shot Edwards in the head as he was sitting in the front passenger seat of a car. While the police initially reported that the car was driving towards responding officers "in an aggressive manner," the department admitted on Monday that body cam footage revealed that the car was actually driving away from the scene.
The Dallas County Sheriff's Department and the Dallas County Integrity Unit are separately investigating the incident as a crime, though it is not yet clear whether Oliver will face any charges.
Edwards' parents released a statement following Oliver's termination that praised the department for holding Oliver accountable, but called for further action to be taken.
"Over the past 24 hours Chief Haber has made commendable strides toward justice. However, there remains a long road ahead," the statement reads. "We anxiously await this officer's identification and arrest for the crime of murder. The magnitude of his horrible actions cannot be overstated. We fully expect an equivalent response from those responsible for investigating and punishing the crime."
The family also expressed that they want the department to thoroughly investigate the other officers involved in the incident. The family claims that Edwards' 16-year-old-brother and two friends, who were in the car at the time of the shooting, were "treated as common criminals by the other officers; manhandled, intimidated, and arrested while [Edwards] lay dying in the front seat."
Oliver's lawyer, Cindy Stormer, told the Dallas Morning News that Oliver will not yet make any public comments on the shooting or his firing, as the investigation is still ongoing.