NORTH DALLAS (CBS11) – Sixteen-year-old Jose Cruz was laid to rest Thursday afternoon, four days after he was shot by a Farmers Branch police officer.
There were emotional moments for family and friends of Cruz. Also on their minds – the arrest of Farmers Branch police officer Ken Johnson, who is now charged with murder.
“Just because he’s a police officer doesn’t mean he can do whatever,” says Cruz’s cousin, Nora Rubi.
According to a newly-released arrest warrant, when officers responded Sunday they found, “Johnson [was] standing in the roadway [Marsh Lane] while armed with a black semi automatic pistol.”
He was off-duty and had chased Cruz and a friend after allegedly catching them burglarizing cars. Johnson’s colleagues say they have to remain objective while both the criminal and internal investigations continue.
“Anytime a situation like this happens, it dampers spirits. But hopefully with the internal affairs and criminal investigation working side by side, they’ll be completed, and there will be closure,” says Det. David Laisure with the Farmers Branch Police Department.
Nobody answered the door at Johnson’s apartment. A neighbor says he was always personable and took a keen interest in watching over them and the apartment complex.
Johnson’s attorney told CBS 11 he believes that there was no grand jury indictment for his client because he is a black police officer. Cruz’s family members say it’s because he’s a criminal.
“There’s no racism right here, it’s just what he did to him. We don’t care what color skin he was. Just that he killed him for no reason,” says Rubi.
“We have said, this is a cold-blooded murderer who murdered a 16-year-old innocent young man,” says family spokesperson Carlos Quintanilla.
Officer Johnson bonded out of hail Thursday this morning on $150,000 bond.
His next court date has not yet been set.
The Dallas District Attorney’s Office says a grand jury will still review the evidence and then decide whether to indict Johnson.
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