A 15-year-old boy’s death sparked public outrage after Texas police shot him as he was leaving a party Saturday night in a Dallas suburb.
Officials said Sunday that a teen, later identified as Jordan Edwards, a freshman at Mesquite High School, was shot and killed in the car he was leaving the party in. He, along with five other teens in the car, was trying to leave after the police showed up.
Police made a statement Sunday that an unknown altercation ended with a teen being shot and killed in the front passenger seat of the car. The attorney representing Edwards’ family, Lee Merritt, confirmed it was Edwards who was shot. The teen was transported to a nearby hospital where he died from injuries sustained in the shooting.
Police involved in the altercation were unharmed, and the unidentified officer who shot the teen is put on administrative leave.
On Sunday at a press conference, Balch Springs Police Chief Jonathan Haber said the vehicle was backing towards the officer in “an aggressive manner.”
Officers were on the scene after receiving complaints about underage “kids” walking the streets of a neighborhood around 11 p.m. Saturday night. Haber said the officers then heard gunshots in the area. He also expressed the department’s condolences to Edwards’ family.
“On behalf of the entire Balch Springs Police Department, and the city of Balch Springs we express our deep, sincere condolences to the family. We will continue to reach out to the parents and keep them informed as we move forward from this point.”
Merritt told Buzzfeed News Sunday night that the officer’s account of the events which took place was incorrect. He said that witnesses allegedly heard gunshots after police arrived, not before. The teens in the car were supposedly leaving the party because it was getting out of hand.
He said the officer’s account of where the bullet came from was also incorrect. The bullet allegedly “entered the passenger side window and shattered it,” indicating that the officer was next to the vehicle, not behind.
“They’re insinuating that the car was backing up and threatened the officer, but the injury is not consistent with that story. The officer was standing right there.”
Merritt said the other teens in the vehicle weren’t charged with underage drinking, and the teens only left the party because they heard the police were on their way.
The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office and the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department will conduct the investigation, and Balch Springs Police Department will also conduct an internal review.
The public responded to the shooting, saying Edwards’ death was unnecessary.
The Women’s March tweeted, “He was 15. There are no words. #StopKillingBlackPeople.”
— Women's March (@womensmarch) May 1, 2017
[Feature Image: Facebook]