Georgia trooper fired, charged after shooting 60-year-old Black motorist in broken-tail light stop

By Larry Johnson

A state trooper has been fired in the American state of Georgia after the death of another Black man at the hands of police.

Jacob Gordon Thompson, 27, the trooper, was arrested and charged with felony murder in the death of Julian Edward Roosevelt Lewis, 60.

Thompson shot Lewis after attempting to arrest him for having a broken tail light on his Nissan Sentra..

In this undated photo released by the Georgia Department of Public Safety, State trooper Jacob Gordon Thompson is seen in an official portrait. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said in a statement Friday, Aug. 14, 2020 that Thompson was charged with felony murder and aggravated assault. The trooper has been fired and charged with murder a week after he fatally shot a 60-year-old man who attempted to flee a traffic stop. (Georgia Department of Public Safety via AP)

“The car refused to stop and led the trooper on a brief chase down several county roads,” the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said. “The trooper initiated a Precision Intervention Technique (PIT) and the car came to a stop in the ditch.”

What happened after the chase isn’t clear in several news reports about the incident, but at some point, fired a shot that killed Lewis. Lewis was shot in the forehead. Thompson reported that he feared for his safety after Lewis was revving his engine.

Here is the incident report:

https://apps.npr.org/documents/document.html?id=7038669-DPS00066031-Incident-Report-080720

And here is the “use of force” report:

https://apps.npr.org/documents/document.html?id=7038670-DPS00066031-Use-of-Force-080720

Lewis had been returning from a convenience store, where he’d bought his wife a grape soda.

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