(CNN) — Former Palm Beach County police officer Nouman Raja has been charged with attempted first degree murder and manslaughter by culpable negligence in the shooting death of stranded motorist Corey Jones last year.
Statement by Rev. Al Sharpton
“When I preached at the funeral of Corey Jones, I made it clear that we will not rest until those responsible for his death are brought to justice. The filing of charges against Officer Raja is a positive first step on the long road to justice – but it is by no means the end of the journey. Corey Jones, an innocent man with no criminal record and a license to carry a concealed weapon, was gunned down for absolutely no reason. Our commitment to justice will never waver and the National Action Network will stand with the Jones family as the fight continues.”
A grand jury found “that the use of force by Mr. Raja was unjustified,” Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg told reporters Wednesday.
Rajas has been arrested, according to Aronberg. He was fired from the police force in November.
Raja was on a burglary detail and in street clothes when he came upon Jones, whose car had broken down on a highway off-ramp early one Sunday morning in October. Both men were armed and Jones had a concealed carry permit, but his gun was not fired.
Raja fired six times, hitting Jones three times, according to Benjamin Crump, an attorney for the Jones’ family.
Jones was black. Raja is Indian-American. The case marked another in a series of controversial police shooting in the United States that have raised questions about race and policing.