Palm Beach News

Al Sharpton to Deliver Corey Jones' Eulogy on Saturday; Funeral to Be Live-Streamed

Corey Jones' family has announced his wake and funeral for this weekend and has asked the Rev. Al Sharpton to deliver the eulogy. Jones, a 31-year-old South Florida musician, was gunned down by a Palm Beach Gardens plainclothes police officer two weeks ago under what many are saying were suspicious circumstances. 

A wake for Jones will be held at 5 p.m. today for Jones' family at Payne Chapel AME, located at 801 Ninth St. in West Palm Beach. At 6 p.m., there will be a public community reflection.

Corey Jones' funeral will be held Saturday at noon at Payne Chapel AME, where Sharpton will deliver the eulogy. His family has also asked Apostle Sharon D. Walker of the Carriers of the Glory International Ministries in Tallahassee to deliver a eulogy. 

In addition, Payne Chapel AME will be live-streaming the funeral service on Saturday, which the public can watch on the church's website

The family is asking the public that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Corey Jones Memorial Fund. You can also send a check made payable to the Estate of Corey Jones to Parks & Crump, LLC, 240 N. Magnolia Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32301. 

Jones died on October 18 when his car stalled out on him off a Palm Beach highway exit. Palm Beach Gardens Police Department Officer Nouman Raja, 38, reportedly got out of his unmarked car to investigate what he thought was an abandoned vehicle and was suddenly confronted by "an armed subject," Palm Beach Gardens PD says. Police also say they found a gun belonging to Jones at the scene. Raja was driving an unmarked vehicle and was dressed in plainclothes. Moreover, Raja wasn't wearing a body camera, and none of the department's squad cars are fitted with dashboard cameras. He has been placed on administrative leave. 

Jones family attorney Benjamin Crump has said that Jones was shot at six times and was hit three times as he ran from Raja and that he never fired his weapon. Jones owned a gun, which he legally purchased three days before he died. He carried a gun because, as a musician, he worked a lot of late-night gigs.

Crump says that, according to Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg, Jones never fired his weapon that night.

"He never fired his gun," Crump said at a news conference last week. "The officer fired six times."

A day following the shooting, the PBGPD put out only a news release explaining the shooting. Under the guise of an investigation, it did not release any further information. Corey's family complained through the media that it was not being given much information either. As a result, members of the Legislative Black Caucus called for an independent investigation into the shooting.

Last week, State Attorney Dave Aronberg announced that his office was conducting an independent investigation. The Palm Beach Sheriff's Office is also conducting its own investigation.

"We intend to fulfill our responsibilities of fairness and transparency under the law and to the community," Aronberg said Wednesday.

Gov. Rick Scott's office has offered Aronberg assistance in the investigation. 

The FBI has also joined in on investigating the shooting. 
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Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph