Fired Dallas Officer Who Killed Botham Jean In Alleged Apartment Mixup Indicted For Murder
A Dallas County grand jury on Friday indicted former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger for murder, according to county court records. Guyger shot and killed Botham Jean, an unarmed black man, in his apartment on Sept. 6.
Guyger, 30, killed Jean in his apartment after returning to her apartment complex from a late-evening shift. Guyger's arrest affidavit said she entered Jean’s unit thinking that it was her own and that she shot Jean because she thought he was an intruder. Guyger lived in unit 1378, while Jean lived directly one floor above, in unit 1478 at the South Side Flats in Dallas. Jean died at Baylor University Medical Center after Guyger made a 911 phone call.
Guyger was arrested three days later on a manslaughter charge, but remained on the city’s payroll until Sept. 24, when the Dallas Police Department fired Guyger following an internal affairs review. Jean was buried the same day in his native country of St. Lucia.
Questions surrounding the case have caused international attention, with a focus on whether Guyger knew she was entering the wrong unit, and if she was justified in using deadly force as a police officer, given that Jean was in his own apartment. Public backlash also targeted the Dallas Police Department for waiting almost three weeks to fire Guyger.
In the affidavit, Guyger said that the door was "slightly ajar" and that the interior was dark when she entered, so she was unable to see that it was the wrong apartment. Guyger said she drew her gun when she saw a "silhouette" in the unit, gave verbal commands that were ignored, and that she fired two shots, with one hitting Jean in the torso.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Jean's mother and sister took the stand before the grand jury this week, but little else is known about what evidence was presented.
"You see, the one person who cannot speak is Botham,” Jean's mother, Allison Jean, told reporters at WFAA. “He’s the one that I would have depended on for the answers.”