Wolfe City, TX – Texas Rangers announced charges on Monday evening against the officer who shot 31-year-old Jonathan Price on Saturday when police responded to a domestic incident at a gas station in Wolfe City.
The Texas Rangers released a statement on Oct. 5 that said the incident occurred at about 8:24 p.m. on Oct. 3 when Wolfe City Police Officer Shaun Lucas responded to a call about a fight at the Kwik Check gas station in the 100-block of Santa Fe Street, KTVT reported.
When Officer Lucas arrived at the gas station, he encountered Price, who was reportedly involved in the disturbance, according to the Texas Rangers’ statement.
“Officer Lucas attempted to detain Price, who resisted in a non-threatening posture and began walking away. Officer Lucas deployed his Taser, followed by discharging his service weapon striking Price,” the Texas Rangers said.
Price was taken to Hunt Regional Hospital where he later died, KTVT reported.
Texas Rangers headed up the investigation into the officer-involved shooting and said the preliminary findings in their investigation indicated “that the actions of Officer Lucas were not objectionably reasonable.”
On Oct. 5, the Texas Rangers charged Officer Lucas with murder, KTVT reported.
He was arrested and booked into the Hunt County Jail and then transferred to the Rockwall County Jail.
Officer Lucas was released on $1 million bond several hours later, The Washington Post reported.
Texas Rangers said the Wolfe City Police Department and the Hunt County District Attorney’s Office were assisting in the investigation.
The Wolfe City Police Department has yet to make a statement regarding to the incident other than to say, a day prior to the announcement of the charges, that an officer had been put on administrative leave during the investigation, KTVT reported.
Angry community members told reporters that Officer Lucas was not from Wolfe City and that he hadn’t been a police officer there for very long.
Price’s family said he had gone to the Kwik Check gas station on Santa Fe Street with a friend the day he was shot and encountered a couple having a domestic dispute inside the store, WFAA reported.
According to witnesses, Price tried to intervene in the disagreement and the dispute spilled outside the store, WFAA reported.
Officer Lucas encountered Price and the couple in the parking lot when he arrived and the situation quickly unraveled.
Witnesses reported hearing three gunshots, WFAA reported.
Lee Merritt, a well-known civil rights attorney who has already been retained to represent Price’s family, posted about the shooting on his Facebook page.
“When police arrived, I’m told, he raised his hands and attempted to explain what was going on. Police fired tasers at him and when his body convulsed from the electrical current, they ‘perceived a threat’ and shot him to death,” Merritt wrote.
The attorney described Price in his social media posts as a “motivational speaker, trainer, professional athlete, and community advocate.”
There were cameras inside and outside the store and gas station but the Kwik Check management said it wouldn’t be releasing anything directly to the public, WFAA reported.
Price’s father, Junior Price, has called for the release of all videos of his son’s shooting, KTVT reported.
Merritt said Wolfe City Police Chief Matthew Martin had spoken to him about the videos.
“The chief saw the video and told me he wasn’t happy with what he saw,” the family’s attorney told KTVT.
Price was a popular city employee, according to friends and family.
Developing Story: Family confirm, Jonathan Price was shot and killed last night by a Wolfe City police officer. They say he was breaking up a argument in a gas station parking lot.
The city says the Texas Rangers are investigating. @FOX4 pic.twitter.com/xILFrAsSuA
— Steven Dial (@StevenDialFox4) October 4, 2020
He played football at Hardon-Simmons University (HSU) in 2008, KTXS reported.
Ahead of the announcement of the charges against Officer Lucas, social media posts showed activists were gearing up to protest the officer-involved shooting of Price in multiple locations.
Vigil Friday @ 7pm – City Hall
Protest/ march Saturday @ 2 pm – Discovery Green
Vigil and protest for Jonathan Price who was killed by Wolfe City police at a gas station as he was trying to stop a domestic violence dispute on October 3rd.#JusticeForJonathanPrice #DefundThePolice pic.twitter.com/Fg18BILzKm
— Caleb G. (@cal3bg) October 5, 2020
Protests happening in New York City today (10/5).
The meet spot of the 8PM emergency Justice for Jonathan Price action should be published by the organizer at 5PM. pic.twitter.com/IFBPeh1jQp
— NYC Protest Updates 2020 (@protest_nyc) October 5, 2020
Newsweek reported that Price had posted on social media on June 15 in support of law enforcement and said he agreed with rapper Lil Wayne who has said he didn’t feel “connected” to the Black Lives Matter movement.
“With all the tension and animosity going on with race and [the police right now], I’m on the same fence as lil Wayne, with him saying a white cop saved his life, and hasn’t been too vocal based off EXPERIENCES,” Price wrote on his Facebook page.
He wrote about being raised by white people he considered his second family and said that his own blood family had never done anything for him or supported his business ventures.
“There were times I should have been detained for speeding, outstanding citations, out dated registration, dozing off at a red light before making it to my garage downtown Dallas after a lonnng night out… i’ve passed a sobriety test after leaving a bar in Wylie, Texas by 2 white cops and still let me drive to where I was headed, and by the way they consider Wylie, Texas to be VERY racist… I’ve never got that kind of ENERGY from the po-po,” Price wrote.
“Not saying black lives don’t matter, but don’t forget about your own, or your experiences through growth / ‘waking up,’” he finished his post, followed by a slew of hashtags.