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District attorney: Nederland Police fatal shooting findings will be taken to grand jury

Jefferson County District Attorney Bob Wortham said Wednesday his office would not make the decision whether to press charges against an officer involved in a Tuesday night fatal shooting in Nederland.

“We always, as a matter of course, take all officer-involved shootings to a grand jury and they make the decision,” Wortham said.

Not every shooting, however, goes to a grand jury, Wortham clarified.

The D.A.’s office does make the decision to file charges on some shootings where an officer is not involved.

A Nederland police officer was placed on administrative leave following the fatal shooting of a 29-year-old Daron Jones in Port Neches. Nederland Police reported Jonwa left a Port Neches residence on foot before Port Neches Police arrived, and a Nederland officer spotted him on Carriage Lane in Nederland.

The suspect, who is a Port Arthur resident, was pursued to the 700 block of Texas Avenue, where the officer reportedly fired shots, striking him. Texas Rangers reported Jones was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced deceased.

The suspect was found armed with a 9-mm semi-automatic handgun, Nederland Police reported.

Nederland Police Chief Gary Porter said Officer Tanner Thompson, 26, was placed on administrative leave. Thompson is White. Jones is Black.

The next grand jury will convene Nov. 18, Wortham said. He is unsure whether he will be presented with enough facts to present a case at that time.

Wortham confirmed the Texas Rangers are the lead investigators in the shooting.

“With the Texas Rangers involved, that makes the investigation drawn out,” Wortham said. “They do things more methodical.”

A varied summary approach, Wortham said, to a shooting investigation typically takes three to four days.

For more information on what police said led to the shooting, read https://www.panews.com/2020/11/11/authorities-id-port-arthur-man-killed-by-nederland-police-officer-tuesday-night/

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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