Judge refuses to dismiss claims Balch Springs police violated rights of murdered teen Jordan Edwards – The Dallas Morning News

A federal district judge on Monday denied a motion from the city of Balch Springs to dismiss claims that the citys police department violated the constitutional rights of a group of teenagers that includes Jordan Edwards, a 15-year-old who was shot and killed by one of the citys police officers in 2017.

Edwards was leaving a party on the night of April 29, 2017 with his friends, Maxwell and Maximus Everette, and his brothers, Vidal Allen and Kevon Edwards, when former Balch Springs police officer Roy Oliver shot into the car five times. One of the bullets hit Jordan Edwards in the head, killing him, while the other teenagers in the car were detained and not told why, according to court documents.

Oliver was convicted of murder in 2018 and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Family members of the five teenagers filed a motion July 2 asking for the city to be held liable for allowing the Balch Springs Police Department to promote an unconstitutional use-of-force policy and failing to train, supervise and discipline its officers, claiming the policies violated the teenagers Fourth Amendment rights.

Joe Tooley, the attorney representing the City of Balch Springs, said the city filed motion to dismiss the claims each time they were entered by the families. He said he didnt feel the pleadings were adequate to move forward in court.

Its not untypical, many federal cases go through the state, and some get dismissed and some dont, and we just have to now proceed with the next step and defending the allegations, he said.

In the motion, the families argue that the departments use-of-force policy is unconstitutional because it doesnt specify that force may only be used when an officer is in immediate danger, and that it allows an officer to consider subjective factors when deciding how much force to use.

A district judge originally granted multiple requests from the city to dismiss various versions of the motion, but the families were allowed to amend their filing each time.

The district judge will set a date for the case to be held before a jury trial once all other motions are decided, court documents state.

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Judge refuses to dismiss claims Balch Springs police violated rights of murdered teen Jordan Edwards - The Dallas Morning News

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