A popular drummer from Florida was fatally shot by a plainclothes officer on Sunday, leaving the family with many questions about his death.
According to the Palm Beach Post, Corey Jones, 31, wrapped up a performance late Saturday night at a Jupiter bar with his band Future Prezidents. The drummer left the bar around 1:20 a.m. and ended up stranded on the side of the Interstate 95 highway after his car broke down.
Jones called friend and bandmate Mathew Huntsberger, who already made it home. He also called his brother Clinton Jones Jr. Huntsberger arrived on the highway to help Jones with his car, but after pushing the vehicle to side of the road and a failed oil change attempt, Huntsberger went home at 2:30 a.m.
Jones called AT&T Roadside Assistance after Huntsberger left.
What happened next has been disputed by family members and authorities.
Palm Beach Garden officer Nouman Raja reportedly arrived in an unmarked police car 45 minutes later and noticed Jones on the side of the road. After an alleged confrontation, Raja shot Jones. Police say Jones was carrying a weapon in his hand when Raja approached him.
Palm Beach Post reports:
Raja, who was in plain clothes, believed Jones’ vehicle was abandoned and stopped to investigate it, according to a statement released by police Monday afternoon. As Raja exited his vehicle, “he was suddenly confronted by an armed subject,” the statement says.
“As a result of the confrontation,” Raja fatally shot Jones.
Raja’s body was identified Monday afternoon after police confirmed an investigation would be launched. Family and friends took to social media to describe Jones as a peaceful man who played the drums in church every Sunday and was very active in his community.
The New York Daily News reports:
“When Corey wasn’t playing the drums for me, he was right down the street at his family’s church every single Sunday,” Benjamin Dixon, a friend of Corey’s told The News. “He was a church musician… a church man. He was the most laid back, easy going guy I’ve ever worked with.”
His family plans to hold a vigil at the Bible Church of God in Boynton Beach tonight to honor Jones and demand more answers about the events that transpired before his death. Jones’ brother says the family didn’t hear from authorities until Sunday evening at 6 p.m.
Raja has been placed on paid administrative leave following Jones’ death.
It is unknown if there is footage of Jones’ encounter with Raja, but another encounter between a Black man and a police officer was caught on camera over the weekend.
Video Shows Handcuffed Man Being Punched By Officer
Giovanti Moschino Young, 21, has been accused of assaulting three Prince George County police officers during an arrest over the weekend in Laurel, Maryland.
WUSA9 reports Young was subdued by two police officers during a traffic stop Saturday afternoon. After stating he was injured during their encounter, he was taken to the hospital. After leaving the hospital with no recorded injuries, he was placed in the front seat of a police vehicle, where he allegedly rolled out of the car.
The second encounter with a third officer was recorded by a bystander.
The video tracked many comments that Prince George’s County Police Deputy Chief Hank Stawinski called “one-dimensional.”
Stawinski says Young spit and kicked the officer, leading him to use force by tasing the handcuffed prisoner and wielding his baton.
Stawinski tells WUSA9:
“There’s a one-dimensional picture of this officer being painted across this country that doesn’t represent who he is and doesn’t represent who we are,” Stawinski said. “The individual would not yield, would not comply and unfortunately force had to be used, but it was used in a measurable way to gain control.”
Police charged Young with several counts of assault and released the dash cam video of Young’s first encounter with the officers.
Young is currently being treated for the second batch of injuries. His family plans to hire a lawyer in the wake of the incident.