A funeral was held today for 15-year-old Jordan Edwards at the Mesquite Friendship Baptist Church. His grieving family asked for a pause in protests over his death.
"We need time to exhale," the family said in a statement. "To allow Jordan's death to be our own loss before we share this loss with the world. Though we understand what his life and death means symbolically, we are not ready to make a martyr of our son."
On Friday, the Dallas County Sherriff's Department arrested and charged Roy Oliver with the murder of Edwards. Oliver was a six-year veteran of the Balch Springs Police Force.
"I'm saying after reviewing the video that I don't believe it met our core values," said chief Jonathan Haber when announcing Oliver's arrest.
Oliver fired a rifle into a car of teenagers leaving a party last weekend. Edwards was struck in the head.
"They did search the car for weapons, none were discovered," said Lee Merritt, who is representing the Edwards family. "The kids don't have any history with weapons. No gun ownership, no run-ins with law enforcement before."
Police initially said Oliver opened fire because the car was reversing toward officers. Bodycam footage showed the car was moving away. Edwards' brother was driving.
Former officer Oliver, who is out on bail, will have to prove he acted reasonably.
"A reasonable officer probably wouldn't have pulled out an AR-15 assault rifle at a call for a loud party with a bunch of teenagers," says independent defense attorney Peter Schulte.
Friends remembered Edwards as a fun-loving freshman, due to start spring football practice on Monday.
"Never did nothing bad," one said.
Others described as: "A cool kid." "Everybody liked him." "He had this aura about himself that everybody liked."
An attorney for former officer Oliver did not return a call for comment. Edwards was the 323rd person shot and killed by law enforcement this year, according to a Washington Post database. He was also the youngest.
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