Ex-Dal­las of­fi­cer ap­pears in court for mur­der

Lodi News-Sentinel - - NATION/WORLD - By Jen­nifer Emily

DAL­LAS — Fired Dal­las po­lice of­fi­cer Am­ber Guyger ap­peared in court Thurs­day, her first time be­fore the judge who will over­see her mur­der trial in the shoot­ing death of Botham Jean.

Dur­ing a 12-minute hear­ing, state Dis­trict Judge Tammy Kemp quizzed at­tor­neys about the leak­ing of Guyger’s 911 call af­ter the shoot­ing de­spite a gag or­der. In the call, Guyger sounds fran­tic about shoot­ing Jean but also re­peat­edly men­tions that she is go­ing to lose her job as a po­lice of­fi­cer.

Guyger was off-duty but in uni­form Sept. 6, 2018, when she killed Jean in his Cedars apart­ment, a block away from Dal­las po­lice head­quar­ters.

She told au­thor­i­ties she mis­took Jean’s fourth-floor apart­ment for her own — which was di­rectly be­low his — and thought the 26-year-old ac­coun­tant was a bur­glar. She said his door was un­locked and ajar, though Jean’s fam­ily has ques­tioned that ac­count.

Jean, a na­tive of St. Lu­cia, was watch­ing foot­ball on his couch when Guyger ar­rived. She shot him once in the chest.

Guyger sat ram­rod straight dur­ing the pro­ceed­ings at the Frank Crowley Courts Build­ing just out­side down­town Dal­las. She did not speak. Be­fore the hear­ing be­gan, she whis­pered “ex­cuse me” to a man stand­ing in the court­room aisle who was pre­vent­ing her from head­ing to the de­fense ta­ble.

Kemp had pre­vi­ously asked the pros­e­cu­tion and de­fense to ques­tion every­one they worked with about whether they re­leased the 911 record­ing. She asked the at­tor­neys for the re­sults of the in­quiries Thurs­day in court.

Kemp said she was “dis­mayed to find out the 911 call had been leaked to the me­dia.” The per­son who re­leased it, she said, “lacked the in­tegrity and the fortitude to honor” the gag or­der.

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