the cop who killed jordan edwards got convicted because his partner told the truth

August 29, 2018
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Victims of police brutality rarely receive justice for having their lives taken by trigger-happy cops who would rather use deadly force instead of de-escalating a situation like their jobs require. For once, we don’t have to sit with the reality of a cop going free because Roy Oliver, the man responsible for the death of 15-year-old Jordan Edwards, was just found guilty of the teenager’s death.

Oliver was fired from the Balch Springs police department after shooting into a car that contained Edwards, his two brothers, and two friends after a party that was shut down because of a noise complaint. Footage caught on Oliver’s bodycam show the officer going from joking with teenagers inside the house where the party had ended to unloading a shotgun into the Chevrolet Impala driven by Jordan’s brother Vidal Allen. The situation escalated when shots were heard as the officers were closing down the party Edwards was attending. The shots came from a nearby nursing home prompting Edwards, his brother, and their friends to also rush to safety. Oliver’s partner Tyler Gross was trying to stop the car when Oliver shot into the car. Oliver had initially stated that the car containing the victim was headed aggressively towards his partner but Balch Springs Police Chief Jonathan Haber retracted his own statement corroborating Oliver’s version of the events when bodycam footage debunked the officer’s claim.

Dallas News reported that “Oliver testified in his own defense that he “had no other option” but to shoot into a car that he feared was going to hit his partner.” Testimony by Edward’s brother revealed that he did hear screaming but did not know it was a police officer because he was so anxious to get to safety. “I didn’t understand that was a police officer at that time,” Allen said. “I just wanted to get home and get everyone safe” according to his statement quoted in Dallas News. Oliver’s partner also discredited his own partner’s testimony – a rare occurrence owing to the wall of secrecy preventing police misconduct coming to light. “Gross said he didn’t think the car was trying to hit him. “I was in fear that the vehicle was close to me, but not in fear that the vehicle was trying to run me over.” The prosecution used Allen and Gross’ testimonies to show Oliver’s deadly logic, especially considering his partner, who was close to the car, didn’t feel the need to shoot into it.

“Oliver was charged with murder and four counts of aggravated assault by a public servant for the April 2017 on-duty shooting. He was on trial for murder and two of the assault charges.” It’s unfortunate that news like this is rare but it was about time, especially considering that Oliver could have been responsible for the deaths of five people and not Jordan’s alone. Even then, Jordan’s death did not need to happen because no one in the Chevrolet Impala was involved with the shots that rang out from the nursing home. Oliver faces life in prison, hopefully ushering in a precedent that results in less murderous cops going free in the future.

Finally, some justice for Jordan Edwards’ family and friends.

Rest In Peace King.