The options were Murder, Manslaughter and acquittal. Did the jury make the right call? What do you think?
Amber Guyger has now heard the jury’s verdict on the charges she was facing.
In the unlikely event that our readers are unfamiliar with the case, this was not your ordinary officer-involved shooting case.
Amber Guyger was a cop who had returned home after a fifteen-hour shift and mistakenly parked on the wrong floor in the parking garage. She entered the building and approached the apartment one floor directly beneath her own, mistaking it for her own apartment.
She explained that the door had not been fully locked, and swung open when she arrived there, and she entered believing it to be her own apartment.
She saw a man (Botham Jean) sitting on the couch, eating ice cream, and treated him as she might an intruder. But he wasn’t. He was minding his own business, watching TV and eating ice cream in his own living room.
Guyger said she drew her service weapon and shouted, “Let me see your hands! Let me see your hands!” The figure moved toward her in a “fast-paced walk,” and she could not see the person’s hands, she testified.
“Hey, hey, hey,” she said the person shouted, and she fired.
Prosecutor Jason Hermus had told jurors earlier in the week that the trajectory of the bullet suggests Jean was getting up from a chair when Guyger fired, or he was on his knees, trying to hide from her. Experts have not been able to conclude Jean’s exact positioning when he was shot.
“When you aimed and pulled the trigger at Mr. Jean, shooting him in center mass exactly where you are trained, you intended to kill Mr. Jean,” Hermus said.
“I did,” Guyger said.
Complicating this case still further is the fact that Amber is white and Botham was black.
She was called out for what she did wrong in this case. Not only did she not follow what her training told her about confronting a burglar, but she failed to act properly in the saving of her victim’s life after the fact.
Blood evidence mitigated against her claims of having tried to give chest compressions of any kind nor were the potentially life-saving gauze with clotting agents in her backpack were not applied to the victim’s wounds.
When the jury came back, they had three options to choose from: acquittal, manslaughter and murder.
The jury came back with a verdict of murder.
Did they make the right call?