NATIONAL NEWS

Slain Man’s Brother Hugs Dallas Cop After She Gets 10 Years

Oct 2, 2019, 5:11 PM
Amber Renee Guyger. (Kaufman County Sheriff's Office)...
Amber Renee Guyger. (Kaufman County Sheriff's Office)
(Kaufman County Sheriff's Office)

DALLAS, Texas (AP) — The brother of a black man who was shot dead by a white Dallas police officer who said she mistook the victim’s apartment for her own forgave and embraced her Wednesday as she sobbed after being sentenced to a decade in prison.

As people outside of the courtroom reacted angrily to the 10-year sentence given to Amber Guyger for killing Botham Jean in his apartment, believing it was too lenient, his brother was allowed to address her directly from the witness stand.

Brandt Jean told Guyger that he thinks his brother would have wanted her to turn her life over to Christ, and that if she can ask God for forgiveness, she will get it.

“I love you as a person. I don’t wish anything bad on you,” he said to the 31-year-old Guyger, before adding, “I don’t know if this is possible, but can I give her a hug?”

The judge said he could, and Brandt and Guyger stood up, met in front of the bench and embraced while Guyger cried.

Jurors could have sentenced the former officer to up to life in prison or as little as two years, but prosecutors asked them to send her to prison for 28 years, which is how old Botham Jean would have been if he was still alive.

The 10-year sentence, which will make Guyger eligible for parole after five years, was met with boos and jeers by the crowd outside of the packed courtroom, with one woman saying, “It’s a slap in the face.”

Speaking to reporters after the hearing, Jean’s mother, Allison Jean, criticized the investigation into her son’s death, saying “the corruption that we saw during this process must stop” and that it’s up to the people of Dallas to bring about change.

She also criticized Guyger and the police training to shoot to kill.

“If Amber Guyger was trained not to shoot in the heart, my son would be alive today. He was no threat to her. He had no reason to be a threat to her, because he was in his own apartment,” Allison Jean said.

Dallas County District Attorney John Creuzot, a former trial judge, called Brandt Jean’s embrace of Guyger was “an amazing act of healing and forgiveness that is rare in today’s society … especially for many of our leaders.”

“If your 18-year-old brother can heal and express healing in that fashion, in his words and in his deeds, I would hope that the greater community, not just Dallas but all of Texas and all of the United States, could gain a message from that,” he told reporters.

Dallas’ mayor, Eric Johnson, issued a statement saying he, too, was “deeply moved” by Brandt Jean’s actions: “I will never, ever forget the incredible examples of love, faith and strength personified by Botham, Brandt and the entire Jean family.”

Mike Mata, who heads the Dallas Police Association, didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment.

The basic facts of the unusual shooting were not in dispute throughout the trial. Guyger, returning from a long shift that September 2018 night, entered Jean’s fourth-floor apartment and shot him. He had been eating a bowl of ice cream before she fired.

Guyger said she parked on the wrong floor and mistook Jean’s apartment for her own, which was directly below his, and mistook him for a burglar. In the frantic 911 call played repeatedly during the trial, Guyger said “I thought it was my apartment” nearly 20 times. Her lawyers argued that the identical physical appearance of the apartment complex from floor to floor frequently led to tenants going to the wrong apartments.

But prosecutors questioned how Guyger could have missed numerous signs that she was in the wrong place. They also asked why she didn’t call for backup instead of walking into the apartment if she thought she was being burglarized and suggested she was distracted by sexually explicit phone messages she had been exchanging with her police partner, who was also her lover.

The shooting drew widespread attention because of the strange circumstances and because it was one in a string of shootings of unarmed black men by white police officers.

One of the Jean family lawyers hailed the verdict as “a victory for black people in America” after it was handed down Tuesday.

The jury was largely made up of women and people of color.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

(FILE) - Courtroom (Photo by Spencer Weiner-Pool/Getty Images)...
ANDREW SELSKY, Associated Press

Oregon justice fires panel due to lack of public defenders

Oregon’s chief justice has fired all the Public Defense Services Commission members, frustrated that hundreds of defendants have been unable to find public defenders to represent them.
23 hours ago
FILE: Rudy Giuliani (Photo by Joshua Roberts/Getty Images)...
KATE BRUMBACK and JILL COLVIN, Associated Press

Giuliani is target of election probe, his lawyers are told

Rudy Giuliani’s lawyer says prosecutors in Atlanta have said Giuliani is a target of their criminal investigation into possible illegal attempts to interfere in the 2020 general election in Georgia.
23 hours ago
At the 1973 Academy Awards, Sacheen Littlefeather refuses the Academy Award for Best Actor on behal...
Scottie Andrew, CNN

Academy apologizes to Sacheen Littlefeather, for 1973 Oscars

Almost 50 years later, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is formally apologizing to Littlefeather for the mistreatment she experienced during her speech.
23 hours ago
...
Ashley Strickland, CNN

Snoopy, mannequins and Apollo 11 items will swing by the moon 

While no human crew will travel aboard NASA's Artemis I mission, that doesn't mean the Orion spacecraft will be empty.
23 hours ago
MIAMI, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 10: An American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner approaches for a landing...
CNN

American Airlines cuts 31,000 flights from its November schedule

American Airlines is once again cutting its flight schedule, slashing 16% or 31,000 flights during November.
23 hours ago
PALM BEACH, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 11: A car passes in front of former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-L...
CNN

New charges related to threats against FBI are unsealed against Pennsylvania man

The Justice Department unsealed charges on Monday against a Pennsylvania man who allegedly threatened to kill FBI agents after investigators searched Mar-a-Lago, former President Donald Trump's home in Florida.
23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
...
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...
AARP Utah

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Slain Man’s Brother Hugs Dallas Cop After She Gets 10 Years