US ex-cop who killed unarmed black neighbour found guilty of murder

Amber Guyger killed Botham Jean because she thought she was facing an intruder in her apartment

GUILTY VERDICT: Ex Dallas police officer Amber Guyger and (right) Botham Jean

A US former police officer who shot dead her neighbour inside his own apartment in Dallas has been found guilty of murder.

Amber Guyger, who is white, shot the unarmed Botham Jean while he was eating ice cream, after entering the home through the unlocked door and thinking she was in her flat.

The verdict comes after a tense seven-day trial in which Guyger admitted: “I shot an innocent man.”

The jury deliberated for just a few hours before finding her guilty of murder.

Cheers erupted in the courthouse in Dallas, Texas, when the verdict was read out, and someone shouted “Thank you, Jesus!”


As the verdict was announced Guyger slumped down at the defence table and wept.

In Texas, the sentence for murder is between five and 99 years.

The jury is expected to return for Guyger’s sentencing.

Guyger’s lawyers had argued she was distracted by sexually suggestive texts with another police officer and had just completed a nearly 14 hour shift when she made “a series of horrible mistakes” on the night of 6 September 2018.

Prosecutors accused her of bursting into Jean’s apartment “commando-style” and firing at him while he was eating a bowl of ice cream on his sofa.

Guyger testified that she found the door unlocked, and noticed it open slightly when she pushed her key into what she said she thought was her apartment.

However prosecutors said the off-duty police officer failed to recognise signs, such as Jean’s distinctive red doormat, that she was standing outside the wrong flat.


Following the verdict civil rights lawyer Lee Merritt said: “This is a victory for black people in America.

“It’s a signal that the tide is going to change here. Police officers are going to be held accountable for their actions and we believe that will begin to change policing culture all over the world.”

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