Jordan Edwards shooting: Texas police officer fired

Image source, Family Handout
Image caption, Jordan Edwards, 15, was remembered as "a checklist of everything you would want in a player, a son, a teammate, a friend"

A Texas police department has sacked an officer who shot an unarmed black teenager in the back of the head at the weekend.

Jordan Edwards, 15, died after Officer Roy Oliver fired a rifle into a car that was driving away from a party in the Dallas suburb of Balch Springs.

Police initially said the car reversed "aggressively" towards the officer, but footage discredits that claim.

Police Chief Jonathan Haber said he "misspoke".

Officer Oliver was fired for violating several department policies, a police statement said, without providing further details.

Lee Meritt, a lawyer for Jordan's family, said they want the officer arrested.

They also want the other police on scene that night to be punished for their treatment of family members.

Media caption, Prayer vigil for teen killed by police

The death occurred on Saturday night when police responded to reports of underage drinking at a house party where around 100 kids had gathered, neighbours said.

Officers were inside the home trying to find the owner when they heard outside what they believed to be gunshots, causing panic at the home as people fled.

Officer Oliver fired into a car full of teenagers as they left the party, Chief Haber said after reviewing the body-cam video.

The car was actually driving forward - away from police - and not reversing toward them when the shots were fired, he explained.

Image source, Mesquite Independent School District
Image caption, Jordan was shot in the back of the head

Jordan, who was in the front passenger seat, died after being shot in the back of the head.

"I was unintentionally incorrect yesterday when I said that the victim's vehicle was backing down the road," Mr Haber said on Monday.

"In fact, according to the video that I viewed, the vehicle was moving forward as the officers approached."

The officer's behaviour "did not meet our core values", the police chief added.

Image source, CBS
Image caption, Jordan's mother, Charmaine, silently wept as her lawyers called for the officer's arrest

Jordan's brothers, Vidal and Kevon, and two friends were detained at the scene and taken to the Dallas County Sheriff's Department, where they were held overnight and interviewed as witnesses.

After the shooting, the boys "were immediately treated as common criminals by other officers; manhandled, intimidated and arrested, while their brother lay dying in the front seat", the family statement said.

"The officers who extended this nightmare for those children ought to be properly reprimanded," the Edwards family said.

They added that they do not want protests to be held until after the funeral.

Image source, CBS

"Their young lives will forever be altered," the family statement said. "No one, let alone young children, should witness such horrific, unexplainable, violence."

Mr Merrit told NBC News that Jordan's father was detained when he arrived at the police station and accused of "hostile behaviour".

Jordan's cause of death has been ruled a homicide, however, that does not necessarily mean charges will be filed against the officer.

The Dallas County Sheriff's Department and the Dallas County District Attorney's Office are conducting a criminal investigation.

Jordan's coach, Jeff Fleener, told the Dallas Morning News that he was "crushed and heartbroken" to learn the first-year American football player at Mesquite High School had been killed.

"You create a checklist of everything you would want in a player, a son, a teammate, a friend, and Jordan had all that. He was that kid," he said.