Nouman Raja, the plainclothes police officer responsible for the tragic killing of Corey Jones, a 31-year-old Florida musician who was shot to death on the highway last month, has been fired by the Palm Beach Gardens police department.
Though no official reason was given for his firing, the move was within the department's rights, according to a city official, because Raja was still in a mandatory probationary period during which time officers can be fired without cause or reason. Raja was hired by the department in April.
Jones' family, in a statement released Thursday by its attorneys, said it was pleased about Raja's firing, but it maintains Raja "also must be held criminally liable for his reckless actions that night." The police department said an investigation into criminal charges is ongoing.
The incident occured last month when Jones was approached by Officer Nouman Raja at 3 a.m. while waiting for a tow truck to pick him up on the highway after his car had broken down, lawyers say. At the time, Raja was investigating a burglary and was moving about in an unmarked car.
A confrontation between the two men led to Raja firing six bullets at Jones, who was struck three times in his side and upper body. His gun was also found between his body and his vehicle. His body was located 80 to 100 feet from the car, Reuters reports.
Family members said Jones was a responsible gun owner and carried the weapon to guard his expensive music equipment and the large amounts of cash he received following gigs. He also often traveled late at night.
Jones' death made national headlines and invoked the ire of Black Lives Matter protestors around the country.
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(Photo: Courtesy of Family)