Jury Finds Amber Guyger Guilty
A jury has found Amber Guyger guilty of the murder of Botham Jean. Last year, Guyger had entered Jean’s apartment after allegedly confusing it for her own. She then shot Jean to death after believing him to be an intruder. This would have been an open-and-shut case in almost every imaginable scenario with one very notable exception: Guyger was an officer with the Dallas Police Department.
At every turn, she enjoyed a measure of extended decency rarely if ever offered to other murder suspects. This included initial police concern for Guyger’s well-being, a subsequent footdrag to arrest Guyger for Jean’s killing, an investigation that seemed more focused on scapegoating Jean than it did proving Guyger’s guilt, and police testimony that Guyger was justified in having killed Jean.
Despite this, as well as a pitched defense that claimed Jean’s murder was nothing more than a “series of horrible mistakes,” the jury convicted Guyger of the most serious charge levied against her. Guyger faces 5 to 99 years in prison.
It is exceedingly rare that police officers are punished for their conduct, no matter how egregious. This is a very good start.