Balch Springs police Officer Roy Oliver was sacked Tuesday for violating department policy in the Saturday night shooting that left Jordan Edwards dead, the Dallas Morning News reported. The medical examiner has ruled Edwards' death a homicide.
Chief Haber said Oliver violated several department policies in the shooting, but wouldn't elaborate on the specific violations, citing the now terminated officer's right to appeal. While speaking with the individuals inside and attempting to locate the homeowners, the officers heard the sound of gunfire outside, which turned the party into a "chaotic scene", the department said.
"Thousands of Facebook and Twitter users have posted about the case in recent days with the hashtag "#jordanedwards", some comparing his death to other police shootings of young black men, such as 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland, who was fatally shot in November 2014 as he held a pellet gun. At the same time, the family of the victim, Jordan Edwards, is calling for criminal charges against in a case that has added to what seems like a grim fraternity of Black males killed at the hands of police. Ex-officer Roy Oliver was the shooter.
"You have my assurances that my department will continue to be responsive, transparent and accountable", Chief Haber said.
"We are here to serve this community and we're going to continue to do our jobs and we're going to continue to do it to the best of our ability", Haber said.
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Attorney Cindy Stormer, who is representing Oliver, declined to comment to the Dallas Morning News as the investigation is ongoing. "Our family is working hard to deal with both the loss of our beloved Jordan and the lingering trauma it has caused our boys".
The police department's latest statement asserts that officers entering the house heard gunshots ring out during a "chaotic scene with numerous people running away from the location".
Haber changed the department's official account of the shooting on Monday, admitting that the vehicle Edwards was in had been driving away when Oliver opened fire and had not been moving towards police in "an aggressive manner" as the account initially stated.
Edwards was described as a good student and popular athlete by family and friends. However, Haber walked back his claim and said he "misspoke" after reviewing video footage of the incident and said Edwards and his companions were in fact driving away when Oliver fired at them. They couldn't tell if he was already dead. His 16-year-old brother was driving the vehicle, attorneys for the family say. Instead, Crockett said, he was detained and handcuffed. "We anxiously await this officer's identification and arrest for the crime of murder", the family said in the statement.