Mississippi officer cleared in fatal shooting of Covington veteran

Leonard Parker Jr., 53, of Covington, was shot and killed by a Gulfport, Mississippi, police officer on Feb. 1, 2020.
Leonard Parker Jr., 53, of Covington, was shot and killed by a Gulfport, Mississippi, police officer on Feb. 1, 2020.

Credit: Family Photo

Credit: Family Photo

A Mississippi police officer who shot and killed a Georgia man early last year has been cleared by a grand jury in his home state, according to local news reports.

Leonard Parker Jr., 53, of Covington, died Feb. 1, 2020, when he was shot by a Gulfport, Mississippi, officer responding to a 911 call, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported. The grand jury found no criminal conduct on behalf of the officer, according to Biloxi news station WLOX.

ExploreCovington man killed in Mississippi officer-involved shooting

The incident unfolded after Gulfport police had received multiple 911 calls about a single address. The responding officer was walking up to the location around 3 a.m. when a car began driving toward him. The officer fired at the vehicle and hit Parker, killing him with a single shot, the AJC reported.

Officials did not share additional details about the circumstances of the shooting.

Parker, a military veteran, was laid to rest at the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton, according to his obituary.

The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation prepared a report on the incident for the grand jury. At the time, the officer involved was placed on “non-enforcement” duties, but his current status with the department was not shared.

No further action will be taken by the grand jury in the case, WLOX reported.

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