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Texas officer charged over shooting of a Black man

The district attorney in Hunt County, Texas said he plans to have a grand jury weigh a possible indictment of a white police officer charged with murder after fatally shooting a 31-year-old Black man.

Compiled from news agencies WORLD
Published October 06,2020
A Wolfe City limits sign on October 5, 2020. Wolfe City police officer Shaun Lucas has been charged in relation to the fatal shooting of Price on October 3, 2020 after Price was allegedly trying to stop a domestic dispute. (Montinique Monroe/Getty)

A white police officer from Texas faces murder charges after shooting dead a Black man reportedly trying to break up a fight, authorities said Tuesday, in the latest case of alleged wrongful killings by US police.

Shaun Lucas is accused of gunning down unarmed Jonathan Price, 31, on Saturday night in the small Texas town of Wolfe City, 60 miles (100 kilometers) from Dallas.

Lee Merritt, a lawyer for the victim's family, said that Price had intervened when he saw a man attacking a woman, and that Price raised his hands when police arrived.

The Texas Department of Public Safety released a statement saying that Lucas tried to detain Price "who resisted in a non-threatening posture and began walking away" before Lucas shot him with a taser and then with a gun.

"The Texas Rangers have charged Officer Lucas with the offense of murder," the department said, adding that a preliminary investigation indicated his actions were not "reasonable."

A series of deaths of Black citizens at the hands of white officers has sparked national anger in the United States this year, fuelling mass protests against police racism and violence.

In two high-profile cases, Breonna Taylor, 26, was shot dead in her apartment by Kentucky police in March, while George Floyd, 46, was killed in May in Minneapolis when a white police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

Lucas has been arrested with bail set at $1million.