East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld has been charged with one count of criminal homicide after allegedly shooting 17-year-old Antwon Rose Jr. in the back.
Rosfeld’s arrest comes on the heels of a wave of community outrage, which broke out after Rose was killed on June 19. Rose and two others were in a car that Rosfeld stopped on suspicion that it was tied to a recent drive-by shooting.
Rose and another passenger ran from the stop, upon which Rosfeld fired at them, hitting Rose three times in the back. In the aftermath, Rosfeld told law enforcement that he wasn’t sure if Rose was armed, or whether the boy’s arm was pointed in his direction at the time he fired on him.
While there were two firearms found in the car, there were no weapons found on Rose’s body. Officer Rosfeld, a 30-year-old white man, killed Rose on his first day on the job as an East Pittsburgh police officer.
Attorney S. Lee Merritt, who is representing the Rose family, said that the one count of criminal homicide filed against Officer Rosfeld on Wednesday is a step in the right direction.
“This is a small stride toward justice, but we have a very long road ahead,” Merritt said.
For the forth day in a row we came together in unity to demand #justiceforantwonrose a unarmed 17 year old boy who was shot 3 times in the back and killed by Officer Michael Rosfeld pic.twitter.com/51qDQtvDAX
— Jasiri X (@jasiri_x) June 23, 2018
A GoFundMe launched by the group Woodland Hills Students Against Gun Violence for Rose’s funeral has raised nearly $14,000 as of this writing, requested by the boy’s family to give him a proper burial.
“No family is prepared to bury their child, and this will not be easy for them,” the fundraiser states. “The gun violence and police brutality need to stop. If there is no justice, there will be no peace.”
Rosfeld is currently being held on a $250,000 bond. He faces a preliminary hearing on July 6, and has been on paid administrative leave since killing Rose.
Jake Shepherd is a freelance writer from Cleveland, Ohio. He enjoys poring through financial disclosure statements, spirited debate, and good scotch. He remains eternally optimistic about the Browns. Email him at jake.d.shepherd.21 (at) hotmail (dot) com.