Houston Police Officer Juventino Castro will not be charged in the fatal shooting of 26-year-old Jordan Baker, who was unarmed, the Houston Chronicle reports.
A Harris County grand jury came to its decision Tuesday, formally clearing Castro in the January shooting. According to the Chronicle, the case marked one of the county’s first grand jury deliberations in an officer-involved shooting since the nationwide unrest sparked by the deaths of Ferguson, Mo.’s Michael Brown and New York City’s Eric Garner.
According to the Chronicle, Baker’s mother, Janet Baker, has long maintained that Castro profiled her son as a criminal because he was wearing a dark hoodie at the time of his death.
Castro, a 10-year veteran of the force, was in uniform at the time of the killing but was working his extra security job at a strip mall, where businesses had been the target of recent robberies, the news site notes.
Police have maintained that Castro had attempted to stop Baker in the parking lot of the strip mall, leading to a tussle that led to a foot chase. The police say that Baker stopped running, reached for his waistband and charged at Castro. The officer fired his gun once, killing the young man.
According to the Chronicle, Harris County grand juries have not indicted any Houston officer in a shooting since 2008. More than a quarter of the 121 civilians shot by law enforcement from 2008 to 2012 were unarmed, the news site notes.
Read more at the Houston Chronicle.