The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Shooting on SE still raising questions

04_24_2013.1Today marks three months since a 22-year-old man was shot and killed by a Grand Prairie police officer in a SE Campus parking lot.

Yet since that day, we know almost nothing more about the shooting and why it happened.

It all happened so fast. Police said former Marine Jordan Hatcher stole goods from a Target store across the highway from campus. Police chased him onto campus property. There, Hatcher reportedly confronted police and tried to take an officer’s Taser. The officer, fearing for his and his fellow officers’ safety, shot and killed Hatcher.

Since then, there has been no report disclosed. The identity of the officer who shot and killed a human being has never been revealed.

It is troubling to consider that Hatcher’s perspective may never be told.

More questions have been raised than answered. How did the struggle over the Taser occur? Could Hatcher, who was believed to be unarmed before reportedly grabbing the Taser, have been that much of a serious threat since he was attempting to run away from police? And if Tasers are commonly used by police officers and viewed as safe, why then had a police officer feared for his and his fellow officer’s safety enough to fatally shoot someone for gaining control of one?

As of now, the public does not have enough information to draw any conclusions.

The Collegian has filed open record requests seeking information regarding the case, but as of yet, has not received it.

And still there are other questions. What was the man accused of stealing? Had officers attempted to Taser Hatcher as a means of subduing him before multiple rounds were fired?

Again, that information has not been released.

When the public is not provided facts, even minor ones, that leaves minds open to imagination. They are left wondering what those answers are and why.

Among college-age students in the age of social media where tweets are cheap, a lack of information could actually worsen the situation.

Students should know and feel safe on a college campus. Providing answers to some of the whys could help clear their perception and create a better sense of safety. In short, more openness and better communication with the public is needed.

Classes continued on SE Campus that day as a body lay covered in the parking lot. Students were not in danger, we were told.

But as students and citizens, if we simply continue on after a 22-year-old ex-Marine is killed on one of our campuses without seeking answers to what happened that day, perhaps we are in more danger than we think.

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