Guilty verdict for cop who shot PwC accountant
A Dallas jury found former police officer Amber Guyger guilty on Tuesday of murdering PricewaterhouseCoopers associate Botham Jean.
Guyger, who is white, lived in the same apartment building as Jean, who was black. During the trial, she claimed that on returning home after work she accidentally parked on the wrong floor of their garage, mistakenly entered Jean’s apartment, thinking it was her own, and shot him because she believed he had broken into her apartment.
Prosecutors noted, however, that she didn’t follow standard police procedures such as retreating and calling for backup, that she shot Jean almost immediately on entering his apartment, and that there was a bright red rug outside the accountant’s apartment that was unique in the building.
Having been found guilty of murder, she faces from five to 99 years in prison.
Jean’s family has also brought a civil lawsuit against Guyger.
“This is a victory for black people in America,” a family attorney, Lee Marritt, told reporters after the verdict was handed down.
A native of St. Lucia’s in the Caribbean, Jean was 26 when he died, and worked at PwC in risk assurance.
Jean’s killing prompted PwC chairman Tim Ryan to call for greater conversations around race and inclusion (see “PwC chair encourages talks on race after Dallas shooting”) and to contribute to a scholarship established in the victim’s name. In 2017, Ryan was a co-founder of the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion pledge, which aims to get corporate leaders to focus on issues of race and workplace diversity.
Update: On Wednesday, Guyger was sentenced to 10 years in prison by the same Dallas County jury.