Amber Guyger: On Trial

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Last September, a young woman police officer named Amber Guyger, shot and killed her neighbor Botham Jean who lived exactly one floor above her. She fired her weapon twice but hit his torso once, leaving him dead. What we do know is on that horrific day Guyger clocked out from a double shift, texted her boyfriend very scandalous messages hoping to hang out with him, and mistakenly went into Mr. Jean’s apartment instead of her own because she was parked on the fourth floor rather than the third, where her apartment was located. She stated that her electronic key did work and the door just pushed open. She saw a man and shot, thinking he was an intruder. 

After the shooting on September 6th, Guyger was charged with manslaughter however in November a grand jury handed up an indictment for murder.  Guyger did admit to the shooting but the real question is, was this a murder or truly an accident? Her defense team can argue that a police officer of 4 years has that instinct to defend herself. However, the prosecution can argue that at that time she was an off-duty cop who shot an innocent black man. The issue of the case could also be race. The fact that Guyger is white and Mr. Jean is from the African American community, Mr. Jean’s family believes that as soon as Guyger saw a black man she automatically assumed that he was a ‘criminal’. To add onto the chaos, Guyger did not get arrested the night of the shooting which created an uproar in the black community. 

Amber Guyger’s trial began just a few days ago. Her defense is Texas Ranger David Armstrong who led the investigation into Mr. Jean’s death, according to NBCDFW. Judge Tammy Kemp was informed that Guyger’s defense attorney, Mr. Armstrong, had personal relations with a juror which does not help Guyger’s case. David Armstrong also started to make statements that informed the court what Guyger’s feelings were and why she did them which made Judge Kemp have to take recess for the injustice in the court. So far, Armstrong’s only strong defense is that both Guyger and Mr. Jean’s apartments look very similar and that both of their doors did not latch completely which could be why the door just pushed open the night of the shooting. 

Trial day 3, Dallas County Medical examiner Dr. Chester Gwin stated that the bullet was shot in the left ventricle which caused him to lose blood quickly and that this shooting was a homicide. They still have yet to come to the conclusion if Amber Guyger’s shooting was an accident or not.

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