Former MLB player raises over $91G for family of man killed by Texas police
Former Major League Baseball player Will Middlebrooks has raised more than $89,000 to cover funeral and memorial expenses following the death of childhood friend Jonathan Price, who was killed by a Texas police officer over the weekend.
The onetime Boston Red Sox infielder launched an online fundraiser after Price, who is Black, was fatally shot in the chest Saturday while trying to break up a domestic dispute at a gas station in Wolfe City, Texas, located 70 miles northeast of Dallas. As of Tuesday, more than $91,000 had been raised.
“My close childhood friend, Jonathan Price, was fatally shot by a police officer in my hometown of Wolfe City, TX,” Middlebrooks wrote on a GoFundMe page. “Jonathan was a community leader and mentor, who was killed while trying to break up a domestic dispute.”
Price, 31, a Wolfe City employee and onetime college football player, was attempting to break up a domestic altercation when a police officer pulled up to the gas station and eventually shot him. He was taken to a hospital where he died.
The officer, Shaun David Lucas, 22, was initially placed on administrative leave. He was arrested Monday night and charged with murder. His bond was set at $1 million.
The Texas Rangers, the agency investigating the shooting, said Lucas attempted to detain Price, who allegedly resisted and walked away, according to a statement issued to Fox News by the Department of Public Safety.
“Lucas deployed his TASER, followed by discharging his service weapon striking Price,” the statement said. “The preliminary investigation indicates that the actions of Officer Lucas were not objectionably reasonable, and, therefore, not justifiable force.”
Messages and calls to Middlebrooks, the Wolfe City Police Department and several of Price’s family members were not returned. A request for comment from Price family attorney Lee Merritt was also not returned.
On Monday, Price’s family said video footage proved the shooting was not justified, KTVT-TV reported.
“The chief saw the video and told me he wasn’t happy with what he saw,” Merritt told reporters.
In a Monday Facebook post, Middlebrooks called the shooting an act of racism while lauding Price as a “good man” whose life was taken “with his hands in the air.”
“For some reason he was singled out. I’ll let you do the math,” he wrote. “There’s no excuses this time … ‘he was a criminal’ … Nope, not this time. ‘He resisted arrest, just comply with the cops’… Nope that one doesn’t work this time either.”