- Amber Guyger was sentenced to 10 years in prison for the 2018 shooting of 28-year-old Botham Shem Jean
- Prosecutors had requested for Guyger to be sentenced to 28 years but the jury decided on 10 years
- Jean’s teenage brother gave a victim-impact statement where he forgave Guyger then asked the judge if he could hug her
Former Dallas police officer 31-year-old Amber Guyger received 10 years in prison on Wednesday for the murder of 28-year-old Botham Shem Jean. Guyger shot Jean in his apartment in 2018 after claiming she believed she was in her apartment following her shift as a police officer.
Amber Guyger Booked Into Jail
On Tuesday, Guyger was convicted for the shooting. Guyger’s defense was that she believed her life was in danger after accidentally entering Jean’s apartment believing it was her’s and misidentifying him as an intruder. Jean was watching TV and eating ice cream at the time of the shooting. Her defense did not sway the jury who returned a guilty verdict on Tuesday. Video released shows Guyger being booked into jail following the guilty verdict.
An Emotional Victim-Impact Statement From Brandt Jean
The prosecution had requested a sentence of 28-years for the 2018 shooting but the jury came back and announced 10 years in prison. The sentence caused some outrage outside the courtroom, but the emotions quickly escalated inside the courtroom during the victim-impact statement from Jean’s teenage brother, Brandt Jean. Brandt told Guyger he loved her “just like anyone else” and forgave her for taking his brother’s life. He also stated he did not even wish for her to go to jail and instead wanted only the best for her because he knew that was what his brother would want.
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If you truly are sorry, i know i can speak for myself. i, i forgive you and i know if you go to god and ask him, he will forgive you.
and i don’t think anyone could say it… again, i’m speaking for myself not even on behalf of my family but i love you just like anyone else.
and i’m not gonna say i hope you rot and die just like my brother did but i should… i personally want the best for you. and i wasn’t gonna ever say this in front of my family or anyone but i don’t even want you to go to jail. i want the best for you. because i know that’s what, that’s exactly what botham would want you to do. and the best would be give your life to christ.
i’m not gonna say anything else. i think giving your life to christ would be the best thing that botham would want you to do.
again i love you as a person. and i don’t wish anything bad on you.Brandt Jean
After his compelling statement, Brandt said to the judge, “I don’t know if this is possible. Can I give her a hug please? Please?” The judge said yes, and the two hugged in the court as Guyger began to heavily cry. The emotional moment has been spreading on the Internet as it shows a different level of compassion. It was a moment in time nobody expected to see.
Dallas Still Has A Lot Of Work To Do
Jean’s mother, Allison Jean, said the 10 year sentence represents time for Guyger to reflect and “change her life.” Allison went on to say there is still a lot of work to do in the City of Dallas. “The corruption we saw during this process must stop,” Allison said.
While many activists see the light sentence as an insult others believe it is at least a step in the right direction. Just the fact that a police officer was convicted is unfortunately a huge victory in itself. District Attorney John Creuzot said he expected a longer sentence for Guyger but respected the jurors’ work.
John Fullinwider, who works with Mothers Against Police Brutality, pointed out that over 90% of people convicted of murder in Texas were serving longer than 10 years. More than half are serving over 40 years.