On August 7, 2020, in Screven County, Georgia, while pursuing Julian Edward Roosevelt Thompson (1960–2020) for a traffic offense (some sources say a burned-out tail light), Georgia State Patrol trooper Jacob Gordon Thompson shot Julian in the face as he sat in his car in a ditch, killing him. Thompson had attempted to stop Julian, but when he refused to stop, the officer gave chase and then used a "precision intervention technique" to force him off the road and into a ditch. Thompson then fired one shot, striking Julian in the face. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
On August 14, 2020, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced that Thompson was arrested and charged with felony murder and aggravated assault and was terminated from the Department of Public Safety. Civil rights attorneys called for a federal investigation.
Julian worked as a carpenter and was described by his family as a "great caring man."
A graveside service was held for Julian on August 15, 2020, at the Charlestown United Methodist Church in Sylvania.