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Houston Grand Jury Clears Officer In Shooting

A Harris County grand jury has cleared an off-duty Houston police officer in the shooting death of a 26-year-old man last January in Northwest Houston.


Updated at 5:38 p.m.

A Houston grand jury has declined to indict a police officer Juventino Castro, who shot an unarmed man to death.

The 10-year police veteran was working an extra security job at a strip mall last January when he says Jordan Baker struggled with him and ran, then charged back at him.

In a letter, Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson says the grand jury found no probable cause that a crime was committed, but wasn’t endorsing Castro’s actions.

The decision in Harris County comes amid unrest following similar grand jury outcomes in recent officer-involved deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in New York City.

Baker’s mother Janet contended Castro wrongly profiled her son as a criminal wearing a black hoodie. She’s been backed by activists staging rallies about the case.


Police Chief McClelland’s Statement: 

“We respect the grand jury’s decision in this case.  This is certainly a tragic and unfortunate incident for the officer involved and the family of Jordan Baker.  We will continue to evaluate our policies and training in an attempt to prevent these types of incidents in the future.  We are in the process of developing a new foot pursuit policy designed to protect officers and the citizens they encounter.  We place the highest priority on human life and we encourage anyone that has interactions with police to follow and obey the commands and instructions of officers.  There is always a proper place and time to contest your arrest or file a police complaint.  I have forwarded this investigation to the local office of the FBI for its review to ensure there are no civil rights violations.”




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