Prosecutors Say Officer Guyger Was Distracted by Sexting Before Shooting
Prosecutors are arguing that former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger entered the wrong apartment and shot Botham Jean because she was distracted from sexting with her partner.
On September 6, 2018, off-duty Dallas police officer Amber Guyger entered the apartment of Botham Jean and shot him, saying she believed she was in her own apartment (she lived on another floor of the complex) and Jean was an intruder. According to USA Today, Defense attorney Robert Rogers argued that Rogers was exhausted after working over 13 hours, and a multitude of tenants of the apartment complex have reported parking on the wrong level of the parking garage and going to the wrong apartment as each floor looks identical.
As reported by the Washington Post, prosecutors are offering a different theory on how Guyger missed multiple signs that she was on the wrong floor (apartment numbers with the floor number, different welcome mat outside Jean's door, etc.), saying that she was distracted after sexting and having an intimate phone call with her partner. According to prosecutors, Guyger had been in a year-long relationship with her partner on the police force and the two exchanged sexual texts and spoke on the phone for 16 minutes prior to the shooting. This theory has been presented as a counter to the defense saying Guyger's mistake was due to her being tired and worn out from a long day as the couple were planning to see each other later that night. Prosecutors also pointed out that Guyger texted her partner after calling 911 saying,
I need you, hurry.
I f***ed up.
The defense is also arguing that the attention to the case is politically motivated due to the differences in the races of Guyger and Jean, and the current national scrutiny over officer involved shootings. Prosecutors contend that Guyger was in direct opposition of her training by immediately opening fire on Jean as officers are instructed to take cover when confronting an intruder, contain the suspect, and call for backup.