Former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger is now facing a murder charge in the shooting death of unarmed neighbor Botham Jean, county records show.
Guyger, 30, had been charged with manslaughter in the Sept. 6 shooting that killed her neighbor, but the grand jury opted to indict her on the more serious charge.
Jean, a 26-year-old accountant, native of St. Lucia, and Harding University alum, was in his own apartment when Guyger shot and killed him. Following the shooting she said she was returning home from her shift, got off on the wrong floor and thought he was an intruder in her apartment.
It happened in the South Side Flats complex on Lamar Street not far from police headquarters. Jean lived one floor above Guyger.
The case sparked protests and national debate over what charges she should face.
Following the murder indictment, the Dallas chapter of the NAACP released the following statement:
“We are pleased with the decision of the grand jury to indict Amber Guyger for murder for the killing of Mr. Botham Shem Jean. This is the next step in securing a verdict that will be favorable to the evidence that will be presented by the District Attorney’s Office. We would like to thank the District Attorney’s Office for the thorough investigation that they have conducted in gathering evidence in the pursuit of justice. We call on the community to remain calm and let the criminal proceedings take its due course. However, we ask that you join us in continued prayer and support for the family and friends of Mr. Botham Shem Jean. The Dallas NAACP will remain vigilant in monitoring the proceedings of this case and look forward to justice being rendered.”
Guyger faces life in prison on the murder charge. The manslaughter charge had carried a sentence of up to 20 years.