Jayson Negron, a high school sophomore remembered for his “vibrant personality,” was shot and killed by Bridgeport, Connecticut police.
The shooting sparked outrage on social media and with some in the community, especially after Negron’s cousin shared a video of the 15-year-old’s body lying in the street after the police shooting. You can watch the video below, but, be warned, it’s disturbing and graphic.
Police say Negron drove toward officers, but his family is contesting the police account of the death.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Negron Was Described as Having a “Contagious Personality” & Heart of Gold
A GoFundMe site established in Negron’s name, to help his family pay funeral expenses, has raised more than $9,000.
It calls Negron a “vibrant young man. A young man with a heart of Gold, he had a contagious personality and no party was a party unless Jay was in it.”
The site continued: “When he came, and smiled, it was like the lights were turned on because he truly lit the room. He spent countless hours with his friends doing what his heart passioned (sic) for, rapping into that mic. He was a student at Bunnell High School in Stratford, CT, and was attending” his sophomore year.
Negron dreamed of having a career in music.
2. Negron’s Cousin Posted the Video of the Teen’s Body lying in the Street Because He Says it Contradicts Police
Giovanni Rivera, Negron’s cousin, posted the roughly one-minute long video to Twitter because he argues that it contradicts the official police account to Negron’s family that Negron was shot in the head.
“This is a nightmare.. Bridgeport PD told my family they shot Jayson in the head and was dead on scene this video clearly shows other wise,” Rivera wrote.
Rivera has also posted a series of heart-wrenching tweets:
Rivera told the Hartford Courant that the video was hard to watch but necessary. “It’s very painful to watch, but it’s very important we put it out there because we were lied to by the police” about how Negron died, Rivera said, according to the newspaper.
He’s also fired back emotionally on Twitter at people criticizing Negron, saying he would cut one person’s head off:
Rivera called the police chief an expletive on Twitter.
The disturbing video shows Jayson lying face down on the pavement.
3. Police Say an Officer Shot Jayson After He Backed Into an Officer & His Body Lay in the Street for Hours
The police account is that Jayson was driving a stolen car and, after a brief chase, backed it into an officer, according to The Hartford Courant.
The Connecticut Post reports that police claim Negron and a passenger “were in a stolen car that officers followed from Park Avenue and through a Walgreens parking lot. The pursuit and Negron’s life ended on Fairfield Avenue when he was shot by Bridgeport police officer James Boulay.”
The newspaper reports that Jayson was pronounced dead at the scene and lay in the street for “hours.” The Post quoted Bridgeport Police Chief Armando Perez as saying medical personnel “got there relatively quickly,” and added that Perez says he refuses to watch the video because state police are investigating, not Bridgeport police. The video shows movement in Jayson’s body, indicating he may have been alive “shortly after being shot by police,” reports The Post.
4. The ACLU Has Criticized Bridgeport Police for ‘Callous Disregard’
The video troubled the American Civil Liberties Union, which released a statement after Rivera posted it to Twitter.
“The callous disregard that Bridgeport police officers showed for Jayson Negron during his last moments of life is unacceptable,” executive director David McGuire said on Twitter. “Their behavior was outside the realms of human decency and democracy.”
5. The Lawyer Who Represents the Passenger’s Family Has Released a Stream of Tweets Questioning Police & Saying the Teens Were Going to Cut a CD
Michael Stratton is the lawyer who represents the family of Negron’s passenger, Julian Fyffe, 21, who was shot but survived. Stratton has written a string of tweets about the case.
He wrote that there was another video in the case from Walgreen’s.
Stratton wrote that there was no evidence the car was stolen. “No evidence that car was stolen. Boys were heading to music studio to cut a cd. No drugs. No weapons…” he alleged, calling for the police chief “to go.”
He claimed it took 15 minutes to call an ambulance. “Julian was shot through his back and his arm then handcuffed thrown to ground. No ambulance called for 15 minutes for him. No guns,” he tweeted.
He also alleged, “No officer was pinned under their vehicle. The car was stopped when the shots were fired. He was alive at scene. No ambulance called…”
Prosecutors have not yet reached a decision as to whether there is criminal liability in the death. According to The Hartford Courant, the officer “has been placed on administrative leave during an investigation into Jayson’s death.”
The state police are investigating the death, and their investigation is not expected to conclude for several months, according to The Connecticut Post.