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Court Upholds Murder Sentence Of Balch Springs Ex-Cop Who Shot Black Teen

A portrait of Jordan Edwards is seen behind lead prosecutor Michael Snipes during closing arugments in 2018.
Rose Baca/The Dallas Morning News via AP
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A portrait of Jordan Edwards is seen behind lead prosecutor Michael Snipes during closing arugments in 2018.

A Texas appeals court has upheld the murder conviction and 15-year sentence of a white former Balch Springs police officer who fatally shot Jordan Edwards, an unarmed Black teenager, in 2017.

The 5th Court of Appeals in Dallas issued its opinion on the former officer’s appeal Monday, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Roy Oliver, who was fired from the Balch Springs Police Department after the shooting, killed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards when he fired into a car packed with teenagers leaving a house party in suburban Dallas. Oliver claimed he had no option but to use lethal force because he says he thought his partner was in danger.

Oliver was found guilty of murder in August 2018 and was sentenced to 15 years in prison. He was also fined $10,000.

In his appeal, Oliver’s lawyers argued there were more than a dozen separate issues with his trial, including that the court allowed evidence it should not have.

The appeals court disagreed.

Four other aggravated assault charges against Oliver were dropped during his appeal, but could be refiled.