State police claim officer told hero security guard to drop gun before shooting him but witness disputes account

Jamel Roberson
Jemel Roberson is survived by his 9-month old son, Tristan; Tristan’s mother, Avontea Boose, who is currently expecting their second child; and a host of family and friends. (Photos courtesy of Lee Merritt)

TheGrio has launched a special series called #BlackonBlue to examine the relationship between law enforcement and African-Americans. Our reporters and videographers will investigate police brutality and corruption while also exploring local and national efforts to improve policing in our communities. Join the conversation, or share your own story, using the hashtag #BlackonBlue.

Police are now defending the shooting of a heroic security guard Jemel Roberson who apprehended a shooting suspect but instead was killed by a Midlothian police officer, saying that Robinson was given orders to drop his gun, Illinois State Police said in a news release on Tuesday.

Chicago-area police chief says he’s distraught over killing of a ‘brave’ security guard by one of his cops

“Upon his arrival, a Midlothian Police Officer encountered a subject in plain black clothing with no markings readily identifying him as a Security Guard, armed with a gun in the west parking lot. According to witness statements, the Midlothian Officer gave the armed subject multiple verbal commands to drop the gun and get on the ground before ultimately discharging his weapon and striking the subject. The investigation revealed the armed subject was Jemel Roberson, age 26, of Chicago, who was working as a Security Guard at the lounge and according to witness statements; was attempting to subdue a subject suspected to be involved in the initial shooting.”

Witnesses however dispute that account.

Dorian Myrickes was reportedly one of the victims shot by the suspect inside Manny’s Blue Room in Robbins early on Sunday. He told the Associated Press that he saw a Midlothian police officer point his gun at Roberson and shoot as others yelled out that he was a security guard.

Myrickes also said Roberson did have on a hat and shirt on emblazoned with the word “Security” despite the Illinois state police’s claim that Roberson’s clothes did not “readily identifying him” as a security guard.

The  Midlothian police officer who fatally shot Roberson remains unnamed by authorities, but that has not stopped Roberson’s mother from suing him and the village of Midlothian. She is seeking upwards of $1 million.

Ben Carson’s hometown wants to remove his name from Detroit high school as HUD secretary’s legacy continues to disintegrate for Trump ties

Roberson family attorney Gregory Kulis slammed the state police saying the shooting was unjustified and unprovoked, and the police release is “woefully incomplete.”

Kulis said the family also is having issues getting complete information from the police.

“I talked to the family after they viewed his body and they said they [authorities] did not tell them how many times he’d been shot,” he said. Kulis also said the family still doesn’t know where exactly in his body he was shot.