Jemel Roberson, 26, was a church musician and a security guard at Manny’s Blue Room Bar in Robbins, Ill. The young man, who wanted to become a police officer, was also the proverbial “good guy with a gun” when a man allegedly opened fire at the bar.
WGN 9 reports that security asked a group of drunken men to leave the bar around 4 a.m. Sunday and one of them came back in with a gun and opened fire. Roberson, who had a valid FOID card (Firearm Owners Identification) and was armed, apprehended one of the men involved in the scene outside.
A witness, Adam Harris, told the outlet, “He had somebody on the ground with his knee in [his] back, with his gun in his back like, ‘Don’t move.'”
According to witnesses, when Midlothian police officers arrived at the scene, an officer fired at Roberson, which killed him. According to Roberson’s aunt, police shot him five times. Pastor LeAundre Hill said Roberson had just played at the pastor’s grandmother’s funeral on Friday, “and now he is gone.”
“Everybody was screaming out, ‘Security!’ He was a security guard,” Harris said. “And they still did their job, and saw a black man with a gun, and basically killed him.”
Such a statement has been repeated on social media, with many users wondering if the “good guy with a gun” rhetoric only applies to white people.
That whole good guy with a gun thing only works if the good guy is not black. https://t.co/yaZz6KciHg
— Ida Bae Wells (@nhannahjones) November 12, 2018
URGENT: Here is what happens when a good (BLACK) guy with a gun tries to intervene in a mass shooting. #JemelRoberson
A beloved church musician in Chicago who moonlighted as a security guard was shot & killed by police after he stopped a mass shooting at an area bar. pic.twitter.com/uRPqEEFqKX
— Shaun King (@shaunking) November 12, 2018
The solution to curtail shootings, some say, is simple: Put guns in the hands of good guys.
Jemel Roberson, an armed security guard, was a good guy. Responding officers killed him.
— Alex Horton (@AlexHortonTX) November 12, 2018
If Jemel Roberson had been white, he would still be alive. This is a fact, and we all know it. Think the NRA will speak up? Nah, me neither. https://t.co/3RqjBrLfc5
— chrisberez (@chrisberez) November 12, 2018
Midlothian police confirmed to WGN 9 that two officers from their department responded to the scene, the aftermath of which was shared on Facebook.
“A Midlothian officer encountered a subject with a gun and was involved in an officer-involved shooting. The subject the officer shot was later pronounced deceased at an area hospital,” Chief Daniel Delaney of the Midlothian Police Department said in a statement.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help Roberson’s family with funeral costs.
The Midlothian Police Department did not immediately respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s requests for comment.
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