A former Dallas police officer accused of entering the wrong apartment and killing an unarmed man has been indicted on murder charges, law enforcement officials announced Friday.
Amber Guyger allegedly mistook the apartment she entered for hers, when she pulled out her gun and shot Botham Jean, in his home in September.
Three days after Jean’s death, Guyger was charged with manslaughter.
The grand jury’s indictment follows deliberations and days of testimony from witnesses and Jean’s family.
“I want to thank the grand jury for the diligence that they have given to this case,” said Dallas County DA Faith Johnson on Friday.
Prosecutors interviewed over 300 witnesses during their investigation, before evidence was presented to the grand jury and the law was laid out, according to Johnson.
“I had confidence once we did that, they knew exactly what to do,” she said.
Johnson added that a murder charge “is intentionally and knowingly committing that act,” while manslaughter is “a reckless action.”
Guyger turned herself in and has posted bond.
“I truly believe that she inflicted tremendous evil on my son. He didn’t deserve it,” Allison Jean, the victim’s mother said Friday. “He felt safe in that apartment and he was violated.”
“This is groundbreaking, but it is also just a start,” family members said, adding that a grand jury indictment “doesn’t mean the case itself will be a slam dunk.”
“We are elated that we’ve made this step but we are focused on seeing this case through.”
Guyger, 30, was wearing her official uniform when she arrived home at the South Side Flats on Sept. 6 after working a full shift.
She reportedly told authorities that she opened the door of the unit and saw a “large silhouette,” which she thought was an intruder, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.
Guyger was fired merely weeks after the incident.
Robert Rogers, Guyger’s attorney, said September that “What happened on Sept. 6 was a tragic mistake and words can never express our sorrow for the pain being suffered by those who knew and loved Botham Jean.”
“Amber Guyger is completely devastated by what happened,” Rogers added.
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