Texas officer charged in fatal shooting of Jonathan Price is fired

A White police officer in Wolfe City, Texas, was fired Thursday in connection with the fatal shooting of a Black man, the city said in a statement. The announcement comes days after former officer Shaun Lucas was arrested and charged with murder in connection with the death of 31-year-old Jonathan Price.

The city said that after conducting an administrative investigation concurrent with the criminal probe, Lucas was fired “for his egregious violation of the City’s and police department’s policies.” Lucas had previously been placed on administrative leave, CBS Dallas/Fort Worth reported.

“Wolfe City is a tight-knit community, and we join you in mourning Jonathan’s death and the events of the last week,” the city said. 

According to an arrest affidavit for Lucas, the former officer fatally shot Price after responding to a “possible fight in progress” at a convenience store Saturday at 8:30 p.m. Price allegedly greeted the officer, offering his hand for a handshake and asking, “You doing good?”

Lucas told the Texas Ranger writing the affidavit that he believed Price was intoxicated, then he tried to detain him. Price allegedly replied, “I can’t be detained,” prompting Lucas to issue verbal commands and grab his arm. 

When that didn’t work, Lucas took out his Taser and threatened to use it if Price did not comply, the affidavit said. Price then walked away and Lucas deployed his Taser, which was described as “not fully effective.” 

“While being tased, Price continued to walk toward Officer Lucas,” the affidavit said. “Price appeared to reach out and grab the end of Officer Lucas’ Taser.” 

Lucas then fired four times, striking Price in the upper torso, according to the affidavit. Price died of his wounds at the hospital. 

“Based on video evidence, physical evidence and eyewitness testimony, it is clear that Officer Lucas did then and there intentionally and knowingly cause the death of Price by discharging a firearm causing the death of Price,” the Ranger wrote. 

The affidavit said a body camera captured the full interaction, but that video has not been released. 

Lucas was arrested and charged with murder on October 5, and his bond was set at $1 million.  

“I want to see what the man gets… what he has coming to him for killing my son,” Price’s father said after the charges were announced, according to CBS DFW. 

Residents of Wolfe City, about 70 miles northeast of Dallas, condemned the death of Price, who was described as a “hometown hero,” “standup guy,” and “mentor who worked with children,” the station reported. Price played football at Hardin-Simmons University, and was childhood friends with former Texas Rangers third baseman Will Middlebrooks, who has repeatedly posted about Price’s death and started a GoFundMe to cover his funeral expenses. 

“This is the face of one of my childhood friends. The face of my first ever favorite teammate. The face of a good man. But unfortunately it’s the face of a man whose life was taken away from him last night with his hands in the air, while a small town East Texas cop shot him in once in the chest and then twice in the back,” Middlebrooks tweeted, adding, “I’m sick. I’m heartbroken… and I’m furious. Love you, JP. See you when I see you bro.” 

This one hurts… for so many reasons. pic.twitter.com/Z1gTYJFXuX

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