Thursday, June 4, 2020

Dallas police officer Amber Guyger fired after fatally shooting neighbor Botham Jean

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Dallas police officer Amber Guyger was fired Monday, officials said, weeks after a racially-charged shooting in which the off-duty white cop killed her black neighbor, Botham Jean.

An investigation determined Guyger “engaged in adverse conduct when she was arrested for manslaughter,” Dallas police Chief Renee Hall said in a statement, adding Guyger may appeal her termination.

Guyger was arrested on a manslaughter charge after she shot and killed Jean earlier this month. An arrest affidavit obtained by Fox News said Botham allegedly ignored Guyger’s “verbal commands” before she opened fire.

Guyger had recently ended a 15-hour shift when she returned in uniform to the South Side Flats apartment complex. She parked on the fourth floor, instead of the third, where she lived, according to an affidavit filed for the officer’s arrest warrant, possibly suggesting she was confused or disoriented at the time of the shooting.

She said she entered the apartment — which she allegedly believed to be her own — after realizing the door was unlocked and slightly ajar and then saw a figure in the darkness. Guyger allegedly gave verbal commands, because she believed her apartment was being burglarized, and then drew her weapon and fired twice, the affidavit said.

This portrait provided by Harding University in Searcy, Ark., shows Botham Jean.

 (Jeff Montgomery/Harding University via AP)


When she turned on the lights, she realized she was in the wrong unit, according to the document, which appeared to be based almost entirely upon the officer’s account.

Jean’s family disputes Guyger’s version of events. Lawyers for Jean’s family also questioned why it took three days for Guyger to be charged and why Guyger was so quick to use deadly force in her encounter with Jean.

Lee Merritt, an attorney for Jean’s family, also slammed the investigation into the shooting, saying officials were seeking evidence to discredit Jean.

Police executed multiple search warrants at Botham Jean’s apartment in the aftermath of the killing, and investigators said they found several items, including a small amount of marijuana, FOX4 News reported.

Merritt said the search “highlights just sort of the nefarious nature of [the police] investigation.”

“They went in with the intent to look for some sort of criminal justification for the victim,” Merritt said, according to USA Today. “It’s a pattern that we’ve seen before…we have a cop who clearly did something wrong. And instead of investigating the homicide — instead of going into her apartment and seeing what they can find, instead of collecting evidence relevant for the homicide investigation — they went out specifically looking for ways to tarnish the image of this young man.”

Fox News’ Katherine Lam and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Ryan Gaydos is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @RyanGaydos.

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