All Casey Goodson Jr. was doing was carrying a bag containing sandwiches from Subway into his grandmother’s house last December 4. The Columbus man, 23, was shot six times by Franklin County Sheriff’s deputy Jason Meade in an incident unrecorded by body camera or dashboard footage. He died at OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital a short time later.
Nearly a year later, Meade, 44, was indicted on two counts of murder and one count of reckless homicide. If convicted, he faces 15 years to life in prison. Meade, a 17-year veteran, retired from the sheriff’s office over the summer due to a physical disability. He was placed on leave after the shooting.
According to Meade's attorney, the trial date could come as soon as three months from now or as long as two years.
Goodson’s death was followed by massive protests demanding Justice for Casey. Protestors held up Subway bags to make their point.
The Dentist, the Sub Shop, and Death
Goodson had lost his job as a truck driver during the pandemic. The oldest of 10 children, he was living with his mother and grandmother. He took a job in retail to help support the family. He had no criminal record.
On that day, he visited the dentist, picked up sandwiches at Subway, and was unlocking the door to his grandmother’s house when Meade shot him. The shooting took place at 12:15 p.m.
According to the county coroner, Goodson was shot five times in the back and once in the buttocks.
Searching for a Fugitive
Meade was searching for a fugitive in the area as part of his work for the U.S. Marshals Service task force. He claimed that Goodson, who was not the subject of the search, drove by him in his car and waved a handgun at him. As Goodson exited the vehicle, Meade told him to drop the gun. Meade claimed he shot Goodson after he refused to drop the gun.
A gun was recovered from the scene, but law enforcement provided no further details. Goodson’s family said he had a license to carry a gun. However, they note he had sandwiches in his hand, not a gun, when Meade opened fire.
While U.S. Marshal Peter Tobin initially defended Meade, saying Goodson was waving a gun at him at the time of the shooting, he later withdrew his comments stating they were based on “insufficient information.” He added that Meade was not “performing a mission” for the U.S. Marshals when Goodson was shot.
Civil Rights Lawsuit Filed
The family has filed a civil rights lawsuit against Meade and the sheriff’s office. According to the lawsuit, Meade took hundreds of hours of firearms and SWAT training, but had little training in violence de-escalation techniques.
According to the lawsuit, for nearly four years, Meade was placed on "no inmate contact status." It does not provide information about why he received that status, but mentions his “subpar” performance as a deputy.