Public Candlelight Vigil called over Police Shooting Death highlighting the State of Emergency 



August 12, 2020


Statesboro, GA -  Betty Lewis, widow of Julian Edward Roosevelt Lewis, 60, joined impacted families from other police-involved shootings and deaths to demand a Federal Investigation into the actions of a Georgia State Patrol Trooper that led to his unnecessary death from a single-gun shot to the face on a rural dirt road in Screven County.  "I want justice for Julian.  He was too good to die as he did," said Lewis.  The Lewis family is represented by noted Statesboro Civil Rights Attorney Francys Johnson and Decatur's Mawuli Davis of Bozeman and Davis Law.

"This is a peculiarly American problem that is rooted in how we police. However, across the entirety of the criminal justice system, there is a failure to prosecute, convict, and hold accountable those who abuse the very law they claim to uphold.  When the system fails the only thing left is a revolution," said Francys Johnson.  "We are sounding the alarm because the status quo is untenable with the rule of law and the principles of democracy," added Johnson. 

Representatives from Georgia based civil and voting rights organizations including the Rev. James "Major" Woodall, President of the Georgia NAACP, and Nse Ufot, Executive Director of the New Georgia Project raised alarm over the Lewis murder and the police-involved deaths.  "This is a state of emergency," said Nse Ufot.  This is the 56th officer-involved shooting the GBI has been requested to investigate in 2020. The GBI was requested to investigate 59 officer-involved shootings in 2019.


According to the JUST GEORGIA, is a coalition of organizations, organizers, and lawyers, working to transform the conditions of criminalization and racialized violence, the State of Emergency clarifies the electoral imperative of the November elections and underscores the importance of the legislative and litigation priorities announced by the JUST GEORGIA Coalition in the wake of the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd. "The increased levels of racial violence and police brutality has created a crisis that requires our emergent attention here in Georgia. We are declaring a State of Emergency in Georgia,” said Woodall.

The GBI's investigation in this matter is ongoing.  According to sources familiar with the investigation, it is a top priority for the agency.  ​

A public Candlelight Vigil has been called by several community groups for Friday evening at 7:30 PM at the Sylvania City Hall, 104 S Main St, Sylvania, GA 30467. 


Graveside Funeral Services for Julian Lewis is scheduled for Saturday, August 15, 2020, at 9:30 AM at the Charlestown United Methodist Church, 

1759 Effingham Hwy, Sylvania, GA 30467.

RELATED: Civil rights organizations declare 'state of emergency' wake of the death of Julian Lewis

"Doing Justice, Loving Mercy, Walking Humbly" - Micah 6:8


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