AURORA, Colo. – While Aurora’s District Attorney John Kellner is preparing to announce if he will charge the officer who shot and killed 14-year-old Jor’Dell Richardson, community leaders said sources close to the case are predicting no charges will be filed.
According to investigators, Richardson was shot and killed on June 1 after an attempted robbery. A store employee claimed Richardson had a gun.
More than a week later, Aurora Interim Police Chief Art Acevedo announced Richardson had a pellet gun.
Weeks of protests and memorials followed the chief’s announcement, with community members demanding the officers involved be held accountable.
“I talked to Jor’Dell parents and there is not a word I could ever say that could remedy or alleviate the pain that they are feeling in their lives right now. Nothing,” said Candice Bailey, a community activist.
Bailey who helped organize a public memorial said she has been meeting with Jor’Dell’s loved ones and other community leaders for months.
“We were waiting to find out if the DA’s office in fact was going to charge these officers with this heinous murder. And sadly, we were given the answer that we did not want to hear and that we did not feel justice is connected to Jor’Dell nor for his family,” Bailey said.
Bailey said the lack of action from those in power sends an unspoken message.
“What we see as public safety, and what we've been told is public safety is very different than what public safety actually is…We talk about gun violence, as if it's only our community members. But gun violence is happening at the hands of our police as well,” Bailey said. “I want our community to really think about what each and every one of these parents is now facing as a result of this and what that could potentially feel like.”
A representative for the district attorney’s office said the official letter outlining the findings of the officer involved shooting is “still in-process”.