A Texas grand jury handed down a murder indictment Friday from a snowy former police officer who shot dead an unarmed black man from his flat, which she allegedly uttered for her very own.
Dallas police officer Amber Guyger told investigators she walked to 26-year-old Botham Shem Jean’s flat, 1 floor above her, when she returned home from work on the night of September 6.
She fired two shots later viewing a shape of a body who did not respond to verbal orders, police stated.
The 30-year-old originally was charged with manslaughter and fired by the police force. Authorities said more charges were probably after an investigation has been finished.
A grand jury returned a first-degree murder charge, which is punishable under Texas law by up to life in prison.
Dallas County District Attorney Faith JohnsonFaith JohnsonFaith Johnson reported that under Texas law, a murder charge deals using a deliberate action whereas a manslaughter charge is earmarked for reckless conduct that ends in death.
“We believed it was murder along,” Johnson told a news conference when declining to elaborate on the signs.
She said a trial was probably a year away in the earliest. Guyger turned herself and has been released on bail.
Relatives of Jean — an immigrant in the Caribbean state of Saint Lucia — arrived to Dallas after the shooting and always demanded that Guyger be held liable.
Family lawyer Lee Merritt told a news conference the murder charge was a rare instance of a US police officer being charged with murder for violence against a black guy.
“This is revolutionary. Nonetheless, it’s also only a beginning,” Merritt said. “We realize that we’ve got a lengthy way to go.”
The Jean family stood by Merritt’s side sporting hooks with Botham’s picture and T-shirts that stated”Be Like Bo” — a nickname for Botham.
Jean’s mother Allison explained her whole nation” was on alert together with the anticipation that the jury could have returned with an indictment of murder.” “I look ahead to another measure, and it will be a conviction of murder of Amber Guyger. And more of a punishment — the suitable penalty — which can cause her to reflect about exactly what she’s done and the pain she has caused.”
Jean was operating in the accounting firm PwC, also called PricewaterhouseCoopers, in Dallas. He had emigrated from Saint Lucia to attend a private Christian school in America.
The shooting sparked protests and became symbolic of racially-charged police brutality controversies which blight the United States.
“We’re hurting deeply, but we all take a while now with the conclusion the grand jury attained,” Jean’s dad Bertram stated.
“We return to our homeland with much despair.”