Dallas District Attorney Says Police Officer Who Fatally Shot Man in His Apartment Could Face a More Serious Charge

A Dallas police officer stands charged with manslaughter in the fatal shooting of a man she mistakenly thought was in her apartment, but a prosecutor would not rule out a more serious charge Monday.

“The grand jury will be that entity that will make the final decision in terms of the charge or charges that will come out of this case,” Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson told reporters. “We prepare to present a thorough case to the grand jury of Dallas County, so that the right decision can be made in this case.”

Amber Guyger, who is white, was off-duty when she shot Botham Shem Jean, a black man, in his apartment, police said Thursday. Guyger told police she thought she was entering her own apartment not realizing she was on the wrong floor. Upon encountering Jean, she thought her home was being burglarized and opened fire, according to police.

Botham, a 26-year-old native of St. Lucia, was unarmed. He died at a hospital.

Guyger was released from the Kaufman County Jail on Sunday evening after posting a $300,000 bond.

Though Jean’s family stood alongside Johnson at her news conference, they also appeared minutes later at a separate news conference with St. Lucia’s prime minister and three attorneys. There, they told reporters that they felt Johnson and other officials had not been forthcoming with information about Botham Shem Jean’s death.

Attorney S. Lee Merritt said the family has not been satisfied with the information coming out of the district attorney’s office. Nor were they pleased it took three days to charge Guyger when, in Merritt’s view, the officer’s admission she shot him was sufficient to merit an arrest on manslaughter charges, he said.

“The promise of transparency to this family has been a blank check,” Merritt said.

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SOURCE: CNN, AnneClaire Stapleton, Darran Simon and Eliott C. McLaughlin