The former Texas police officer who’s on trial for fatally shooting her unarmed upstairs neighbor in his own apartment last year testified on Friday that the victim walked aggressively towards her when she shot him.
Amber Guyger, 31, took the stand and tearfully testified that she entered what she thought was her Dallas apartment when she spotted a “silhouette” moving around. She claimed she pulled her gun and told Botham Jean, 26, to show his hands, according to The Dallas Morning News.
The former officer testified that she shot Jean as he walked towards her yelling, “Hey, hey, hey!”
“I was scared he was going to kill me,” Guyger said.
While the ex-Dallas police officer maintained that Jean was standing up when she shot him, prosecutors said he was eating vanilla ice cream on his couch when he was killed.
Medical examiner Dr. Chester Gwin testified on Wednesday that Jean’s autopsy didn’t conclude exactly where Guyger or Jean was positioned when the fatal shooting occurred. However, the doctor said the bullet that entered above Jean’s left nipple traveled in a downward motion, suggesting he was “bent over in some capacity or even on his back” when Guyger shot him, according to CNN.
During cross-examination, prosecutors not only called attention to what they characterized as Guyger’s lack of de-escalation efforts but they attempted to discredit her claim that she was so tired that night that she didn’t realize she was in Jean’s apartment.
When pressed, Guyger admitted that she could’ve called for backup on her radio or retreated from the apartment instead of pulling her gun on Jean. She also said that she intended to kill Jean when she pulled the trigger.
Indicted on murder charges late last year, Guyger claimed she fatally shot Jean in his apartment after mistaking his unit for hers. She reportedly told police that she had finished a long shift when she parked her car on the fourth floor of her apartment building, instead of on the third floor where she lived.
Guyger reportedly said the door was slightly ajar when she placed the key into the keyhole, causing the door to open further. Documents stated that she claimed she saw a “large silhouette” and gave it verbal commands before opening fire, fatally wounding Jean in his torso.
While officials denied the media’s requests for the 911 call Guyger placed on the night of the shooting and Jean’s autopsy report, the September 6 call was leaked in late April. She was fired from the Dallas Police Department several weeks after the fatal shooting.
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[Featured image: Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News via AP, Pool]