Family protests self-defense ruling in shooting of Springfield teen


Family and friends of a 15-year-old Springfield boy who was killed in November protested Wednesday a grand jury’s decision to not indict the man who shot him.

A Clark County grand jury voted unanimously this week to not indict Timothy Reed on any charges in connection with the death of William Allen “B.J.” Beverly Jr., according to the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office.

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Beverly was shot by Reed about 12:45 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 5, at the Speedway gas station in the 1300 block of East Main Street, according to a grand jury findings document dated Monday, Feb. 26, and obtained by the Springfield News-Sun.

Reed told the grand jury Beverly attacked him without provocation and that he was defending himself, according to the grand jury findings.

The grand jury found he was neither an aggressor nor the initiator of the incident, the document says, and he possesses a valid concealed carry weapon license.

“Timothy Reed had a bona fide and reasonable belief that he was in immediate danger of death or serious bodily harm, and that the use of deadly force was necessary to escape that danger,” the grand jury findings say.

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At least six people gathered outside the Clark County Common Pleas Courthouse on Wednesday with various signs saying, “You failed us,” and “BJ’s world.”

Beverly’s mother, Mandy Jackson, said she can’t believe the grand jury’s decision.

“I was shocked. I just couldn’t believe they didn’t charge him with something. My son was unarmed. He had no weapon,” Jackson said.

She learned Monday after the grand jury dismissed that Reed would not be charged. She said she doesn’t understand how Reed could be in fear if someone is punching you.

“He shot my son two times. We can say this stuff now because it’s technically over with but he shot my son twice,” Jackson said.

She wants to fight the decision. She’s currently talking with lawyers to see what other options she has for getting justice for her son.

Jackson said learning Reed won’t be charged is like hearing that her son is dead all over again.

Reed spoke to the Springfield News-Sun. While he’s relieved to not be facing prison, Reed said he also understands what Beverly’s family is going through because he lost his 1-year-old son a few years ago. Reed wants the family to know he’s sorry.

“I know the feeling and never would I want to wish death on anyone or see anyone die or see anyone grieve,” Reed said.

Clark County Prosecutor Andrew Wilson issued this statement in response to the grand jury’s decision.

“We are confident that all of the evidence and testimony regarding this incident were placed before the grand jury. The witnesses who testified included several of William’s friends who were present at the time of the shooting. The grand jury considered all of the facts before them and applied the evidence and testimony to the law of the State of Ohio.”

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