Miami - Today, a jury found Nouman Raja, a former police officer, guilty of manslaughter and attempted first-degree murder for fatally shooting Corey Jones, a Black musician, in West Palm Beach in 2015.
Responding to today’s verdict, Melba Pearson, deputy director of the ACLU of Florida said:
“We are relieved that Nouman Raja has been held accountable for shooting Corey Jones as he waited for a tow truck after his SUV broke down on the side of the highway. We grieve for Corey Jones’ family for having to lose him over nothing. Our hearts go out to the thousands of families who still have not seen justice after losing their loved ones to fatal encounters with police.
“This is the first time in 26 years that a police officer was charged after committing an on-duty killing in Florida. While this instance of accountability in a police killing is heartening, the fact that it took so long tells you that there is still much work to be done to achieve police reform. The accountability of police to the communities they serve is still elusive in many places, and nonexistent in some.
We hope that this step in the right direction keeps the wheels of justice turning. Because people marched, rallied and demanded that the criminal justice system hold Raja accountable for his actions, it could not look the other way. Together, we will continue to work with organizations and activists across the state to achieve real police reform and make changes in policing that will make more officers accountable for their actions, and end the epidemic of police violence in Black and brown communities.”