The family of the Dallas man who was fatally shot last week in his own apartment by an off-duty policewoman are struggling with her account of the killing as outlined in the arrest affidavit charging her with manslaughter.
Bertram and Allison Jean spoke to CBS News on Wednesday saying they want to know why Dallas officer Amber Guyger shot and killed their son, Botham Jean, in his own apartment late on Sept. 6.
Allison told CBS she just wants one thing: “For Amber to come clean … just surrender.”
According to the arrest affidavit, Guyger said she was returning home from work when she mistook Botham’s apartment for her own. Guyger, 30, had recently moved into the apartment located directly one floor below Botham’s and told detectives that she shot the 26-year-old man because she believed he was an intruder.
The affidavit states that Guyger said she placed her key card into the lock on Botham’s front door, thinking she was outside her apartment, and the door opened “under the force” of her entering her key.
Inside, she said, the lights were off.
The five-year veteran of the Dallas Police Department said she saw only Botham’s “large silhouette” inside his apartment after opening the front door and she drew her weapon and “gave verbal commands” to Botham that — in her view — he ignored, the affidavit states.
Guyger fired her service revolver twice, striking Botham, who worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers and was a native of Saint Lucia, once in the torso.
The affidavit states that Guyger immediately called in the shooting. Botham was transported to Baylor University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
“To hear that his door was open, he would never and have the lights off, he would never do that,” Allisa Jean, Botham’s sister, told CBS alongside her parents.
The shooting has incited public outrage, leading to protests in Dallas.
“I am still in denial,” Botham’s father said. I cannot believe that my boy is not here.”
Guyger’s employment status with the Dallas police remains unclear though authorities have said she was placed on leave amid the investigation, as is standard.
She has yet to enter a plea to the charge she faces. On Sunday, she posted $300,000 for her release a few hours after being taken into custody. Neither she nor her lawyer could be reached for comment.
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Botham’s mother told CBS that he moved to the United States well aware of the history of high-profile police shootings of black men.
“Botham died in a way that he himself had calculated that he could never have died,” she said.
His funeral is scheduled for Thursday.