SOURCE- BBC NEWS – A US former police officer who killed her neighbor inside his own apartment in Dallas has been found guilty of murder.
Amber Guyger, 31, argued that she shot St Lucian national Botham Jean, 26, after mistakenly thinking she was in her own flat and that he was an intruder.
The verdict comes after a tense seven-day trial in which Guyger admitted: “I shot an innocent man.”
The four-year police veteran is facing a possible life sentence in prison.
Cheers broke out as the verdict was announced. Guyger slumped down at the defense table and wept.
Guyger’s lawyers argued that 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
Assistant District Attorney Jason Fine called her testimony “garbage” and said her actions were “not a mistake”.
During the trial, the Texas Ranger who led the investigation testified it was common for residents at the complex where both Jean and Guyger lived to accidentally attempt to enter the wrong flat due to the building’s design.
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.
Prosecutors said the off-duty police officer failed to recognize signs – such as Jean’s distinctive doormat – that she was standing outside the wrong flat.
The shooting sparked protests as community members feared that Guyger would not be held accountable.
She was initially arrested several days after the killing and charged with manslaughter before being released from jail that same day.
After weeks of tensions, she was eventually arrested and charged with murder.