Police officer free on bond in Dallas teen’s death
Published 7:34 am Monday, May 8, 2017
DALLAS — A white Texas police officer who fired into a car of teenagers leaving an unruly party, killing a black 15-year-old passenger, faces a murder charge, authorities say.
Roy Oliver turned himself in Friday night, just hours after the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office issued a warrant for his arrest in the April 29 death of 15-year-old Jordan Edwards. Oliver, who was fired Tuesday from the police force in the Dallas suburb of Balch Springs, was released after posting bail at the Parker County Jail in Weatherford, about 95 miles (150 kilometers) west of Dallas. Oliver’s bond had been set at $300,000.
The warrant was issued based on evidence that suggested Oliver “intended to cause serious bodily injury and commit an act clearly dangerous to human life that caused the death,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement
Edwards and his two brothers and two other teenagers were leaving an unruly house party in Balch Springs when Oliver opened fire on their car with a rifle. The bullets shattered the front passenger-side window and struck Edwards. It took a few moments for Edwards’ 16-year-old brother, who was driving, and other passengers to notice that he was slumped over in his seat.
Police had said the teenagers’ car was backing up toward officers “in an aggressive manner,” but later said body camera video showed the vehicle actually driving away from the officers.
Edwards’ death had led to protests calling for Oliver to be fired and charged. Oliver’s firing Tuesday for violating department policies in the shooting came the same day news broke of the Justice Department’s decision not to charge two white police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in the shooting death of a black man in 2016. And a white officer in North Charleston, South Carolina, pleaded guilty that day to federal civil rights charges in the fatal shooting of a black man in 2015.