He was just a kid. An honor roll student. A popular football player with a loving family. But no matter what grades he had or sports he played, we know one thing: Jordan Edwards didn't deserve to die.
Three weeks ago, police officers arrived at a party that Jordan was leaving with friends. They were responding to a call about “drunken” teenagers walking around. Officer Roy Oliver fired a rifle at the car Jordan was a passenger in, striking Jordan in the head and killing him. His two brothers, who were in the car with him, witnessed him dying. The police chief, Jonathan Haber, tried to justify the killing and claimed the car was backing down the road "in an aggressive manner” towards the officers.
This was a lie, after reviewing police dash-cam footage, the police chief revealed the car was actually driving away from officers.
Jordan Edwards didn't deserve to die. Sign the petition to tell DA Faith Johnson to appoint a special prosecutor to the Jordan Edwards case.
The horror and injustice didn't end there. Heartbreaking new details about what Jordan Edwards’ family endured that night have emerged too: Jordan’s older brother was handcuffed and held overnight in jail--without charges. And police even detained Jordan’s father when he arrived at the station, claiming he was “being hostile” for simply asking about his children.
“Not only have Jordan’s brothers lost their best friend; they witnessed firsthand his violent, senseless, murder,” the Edwards family said in a statement. “Their young lives will forever be altered. No one, let alone young children, should witness such horrific, unexplainable, violence.”
Though District Attorney Faith Johnson made the right decision by filing murder charges against Officer Oliver, the officer who fatally shot Jordan, we need to ensure the next step toward conviction. DA Faith Johnson must show leadership and allow for a special prosecutor who will be fair, impartial, convict Roy Oliver, and investigate all wrongdoing by holding the entire Balch Springs police department accountable.
We are asking for a special independent prosecutor because local district attorney offices have been largely inefficient in handling police officer killings due to a reluctance to pursue criminal indictments of police officers. When officers kill, they are almost never held accountable because of an inherent conflict of interest that arises whenever local prosecutors investigate the police officers they work with every day. And studies show the chances of prosecution are lower when the victim is Black. The police officer who killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice last year in Cleveland, Ohio, was cleared under similar circumstances. Young Black men are 21 times more likely to be killed by police than young White men, and too often their families see no justice. The story continues to repeat itself, and we need this to stop now.
Stand with the Edwards family by calling for the assignment of a special independent prosecutor for this case.
No mother should ever have to fear a loved one could be harmed at the hands of those charged with protecting them.