BALCH SPRINGS, Texas - The U.S. Department of Justice has now opened its own investigation into the shooting death of Jordan Edwards by a now-fired Balch Springs police officer. His family met with the Dallas County District Attorney to talk about the case.
Police were responding to a call about a house party on April 29. Officers Roy Oliver and Tyler Gross were inside the house when the shots were fired.
The shots came from the parking lot of the Balch Springs nursing home, which was nearby the house party. Officers found shell casings in that parking lot.
When the officers heard the gunfire, they ran out and tried to stop passing cars. Former Balch Springs Officer Roy Oliver fired his rifle into the car that Jordan was in and killed him. Oliver was later fired and charged with murder.
The attorney for the Edwards says they want accountability and transparency when it comes to the case against Oliver. But they’re still concerned they won't get the justice they need.
Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson met with the Edwards family on Thursday to extend her personal condolences and talk with the family and their attorneys about how this case would proceed.
There were solemn faces as Charmaine and Odell Edwards stepped from elevators outside the district attorney’s office.
The family and their attorneys emerged from the meeting not convinced of what the DA will do.
"I don't feel like I left with the types of assurances that I wanted to leave with,” said Attorney Jasmine Crockett. “For instance, I don’t understand why Oliver was not charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. There were other kids in that car. An aggravated assault deadly weapon charge is easier to make than a murder charge any day of the week. So, I’m not super convinced.”
There were several activist groups with the family who try to hold police accountable for officer-involved shootings and other excessive force cases, including the NAACP and Mothers Against Police Brutality.
“Jordan should be here. This shouldn't even be happening,” said Sarah Mokuria with Mothers Against Police Brutality. “We should be celebrating his accomplishments, not crying about his loss.”
In addition to the criminal case, the Edwards family has filed an excessive force lawsuit against Oliver and the city of Balch Springs.
“We hope that at the conclusion of this lawsuit, every police officer that was involved in this incident, indirectly or directly, are no longer on the police force,” said Attorney Daryl Washington. “We want and we need to know the identity of these officers.”
The Balch Springs Police Department has not said whether any other officers will face discipline or investigation.
The district attorney declined to comment on the case because it is an active investigation.
Demonstrators plan to meet on the steps of the courthouse Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. to call for justice for Jordan Edwards and anyone whose lives were taken by law enforcement.