Amber Guyger, who was on the Dallas police force for four years and was involved in a previous shooting, parked on the wrong floor after her shift and opened the wrong apartment door, shooting and killing Botham Shem Jean because she thought he was a burglar in the dark. He wasn’t; he was a businessman and the beloved son of prominent Saint Lucian parents who was eating a bowl of ice cream and watching television in his own apartment when Guyger burst inside.
The Amber Guyger verdict is now in. A jury in Dallas found the 31-year-old guilty of murder. She has been sentenced by that same jury to 10 years in prison. Prosecutors asked for a sentence of at least 28 years in prison. She will have to serve at least half of the sentence before being eligible for parole.
After the sentencing, Botham Jean’s brother, Brandt, movingly asked the judge whether he could hug Guyger. The judge allowed the moment to unfold. He also told Guyger he loved and forgave her, and he advised her to turn to Christ. You can see video of that moment here.
Allison Jean, Botham’s mother said after the sentencing: “That 10 years in prison is 10 years for her reflection and for her to change her life. But there is much more to be done by the City of Dallas. The corruption that we saw during this process must stop. And it must stop for you. Because after now I leave Dallas, but you live in Dallas, and it must stop for everyone.”
Guyger testified at trial that she thought she was entering her own apartment when she shot Jean and claimed he was coming toward her; however, prosecutors said he was either cowering or getting up from his own sofa when shot. By all accounts, Jean had done nothing wrong. He was just minding his own business in his own apartment when killed by Guyger’s service weapon. The two did not know each other.
The jury rejected a Castle Doctrine/Stand Your Ground law defense as well as a lesser manslaughter charge. According to NBC Dallas, Guyger faced between 5 and 99 years in prison on a murder conviction and between 2 and 20 years in prison on a manslaughter conviction. At sentencing phase, prosecutors presented text messages showing Guyger had joked about a Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade and black officers and indicated she wanted a racist dog. You can read those texts here.
Prosecutors argued that Guyger should have known Jean’s apartment was not her own due to a red floor mat and other clues; the defense argued that she made a horrible mistake. The state also presented evidence that Guyger was sexting her police partner the night of the shooting to counter arguments that she was tired from working overtime after just returning from work. You can watch the verdict here:
On November 30, 2018, Guyger was indicted on the murder charge. That charge, Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson said at that time, requires an element that the person “intentionally and knowingly” committed the crime versus doing it recklessly, CNN reported, quoting Johnson as saying, “At the moment of the shooting it was a knowing … offense.” Guyger’s lawyer insists the shooting was a “true mistake,” according to CNN. Guyger repeated that claim on the witness stand.
“I was scared this person in this apartment was going to hurt me, and I’m so sorry,” a deeply emotional Guyger testified. “…I have to live with that every single day. No police officer would ever want to hurt an innocent person.”
The Dallas Police Department announced on September 24, 2018 that it had fired Guyger. Guyger was arrested by the Texas Rangers in Kaufman County, Texas on the evening of September 9, 2018, jail records show. She was being held on $300,000 bail, but she posted it.
“The officer involved in this incident has been identified as Officer Amber Guyger #10702. She has been on the department four years and she is assigned to the Southeast Patrol Division,” Dallas police said in a statement on the evening of September 8, 2018. You can read a search warrant in the case here. Jean’s family attorney has slammed it as smearing Botham Shem Jean because it reveals authorities found marijuana in his apartment.
A arrest affidavit further reveals that Jean’s door was unlocked, and it was dark inside when Guyger entered his apartment. She allegedly thought he was a burglar when she saw a person in the dark, shooting Jean a single time in the chest after she told authorities he ignored verbal commands. The Dallas Morning News reported that she had just worked a 15-hour shift.
Online records show that Amber Guyger has long ties to Texas.
Mothers Against Police Brutality and the attorney for the Jean family had called for the officer’s “swift arrest” in a September 8, 2018 news conference. “We are calling for justice…It’s unacceptable,” said the group’s leader. “This is an unacceptable way for Dallas to represent itself to the world. This is an opportunity for the city to be transparent and take swift and immediate actions to correct the wrongs.”
Botham Shem Jean was from a prominent Saint Lucian family of parliamentarians and government ministers. He was also a recent college graduate who studied accounting and was known for his leadership on campus and his beautiful singing voice in his Christian Church.
Jean’s family is traumatized and disbelieving, and many people have expressed outrage against the police officer on social media, questioning the story. “I work 14 hour days regularly, and get wrecked regularly, and I’ve never once forgotten where I lived,” wrote one upset Twitter user.
On LinkedIn, Botham Jean described himself as an “aspiring young professional” who was “engaged in developing a career built upon integrity, dedication and relationships, leveraging useful technologies to gain an understanding of and add value in a range industries, striving towards leadership in my career, my community and society.” He was working in Dallas as a risk assurance associate for PricewaterhouseCoopers, according to his LinkedIn page. In college, he was president of a Young Leaders group.
A former classmate who attended college with Jean in Arkansas, Landis Tindell, told Heavy in an email that he was a “great leader on our campus.” Tindell explained, “He was a campus leader. Very active in leading worship and campus student government. I don’t think there was a student on campus who didn’t know Botham. He was always friendly, always smiling, and just all around a great person.”
Here’s what you need to know about Amber Guyger:
1. Prosecutors Told the Jury That Guyger Should Have Realized She Was in the Wrong Apartment
According to an arrest affidavit, Botham Jean’s apartment number was 1478 and Guyger lived one floor below him in apartment 1378. The apartments are “in most ways identical or extremely similar to the exterior surroundings, structure, and description of each other,” the document says. One key way they were not the same: Jean had a bright red floor mat outside his apartment, and Guyger did not.
The defense attorney, at trial, told jurors, “She’s trying to process this as she’s stepping into her apartment and at the same time, I’m sure Mr. Jean is thinking, ‘What is this person doing? Who is coming into my apartment.’ So he’s confused. He’s wondering what’s going on. She’s thinking what is going on? Why is this man in my apartment and she looks up and he’s standing up. He’s about 30 feet away from her. And I’m sure he’s alarmed. But she’s thinking. ‘Oh, my God. There’s an intruder in my apartment’ and she’s face-to-face with him. She’s within ten yards of him and he starts approaching her. And she reacts like any police officer would, who has a gun with confronting a burglary suspect.”
However, the prosecutor, Jason Fine, told the jury, “A guilty verdict in this case does not mean you hate police.” He alleged that Guyger should have known that she was entering the wrong apartment. According to the Dallas Morning News, Fine ticked off several clues that Guyger missed, including the red mat in front of Jean’s door. “…she should’ve known she was in the wrong apartment,” he told the jury.
Fine said that Guyger’s fears were not reasonable. “It sounds so absurd all the things that she missed and all the things that she thought and yeah she thinks it but she is not a reasonable person,” he said to the jury.
Assistant District Attorney Jason Hermus said: “Killing this man was unnecessary and it was unreasonable.”
The affidavit says that Jean was home alone when a uniformed Guyger, who had just ended her shift, arrived at the complex and parked on its fourth floor, which corresponds to the floor Jean lived on, not Guyger. Guyger “entered the building and walked down the fourth floor hallway to what she thought was her apartment,” the affidavit says. “She inserted a unique door key, with an electronic chip, into the door key hole.”
However, the door, “which was slightly ajar prior to Guyger’s arrival, fully opened under the force of the key insertion,” the document contends.
After the door opened, “Guyger observed that the apartment interior was nearly completely dark. Additionally, the door being opened alerted Complainant Jean to Guyger’s presence. Believing she had encountered a burglar, which was described as a large silhouette, across the room in her apartment, Guyger drew her firearm, gave verbal commands that were ignored by Complainant Jean,” the affidavit alleges.
As a result, “Guyger fired her handgun two times striking the Complainant one time in the torso,” according to the affidavit, which says that Guyger entered the apartment, calling 911 and requesting police and EMS and provided first aid to Jean. She turned on the interior lights while on the phone with 911. Upon being asked where she was located by emergency dispatchers, she returned to the front door to observe the address and discovered she was at the wrong apartment,” the document alleges. Prosecutors said at trial that she only gave Jean minimal aid.
Guyger then called 911 from her cell phone requesting an ambulance and police to the location. Jean was transported to Baylor Hospital, where he died. Guyger remained at the scene and told the responding officers and 911 operator that she thought she was at her apartment when she shot Jean, according to the affidavit. Guyger “believed she was in her apartment and confronted by a burglar when she fired her handgun, striking and killing him,” the document says. However, prosecutors said at trial that bullet trajectory showed Jean was either cowering or getting up from his sofa when shot, not charging at or confronting Guyger.
An earlier search warrant painted a different scene, with Guyger trying to get her key to open and Jean supposedly confronting her at his door before words were exchanged and Guyger shot Jean.
Dallas police previously released basic details of what occurred in a news release. “On September 6, 2018 at about 9:59 p.m., an off duty Dallas Police officer called police dispatch and said she was involved in a shooting at the apartments located at 1210 S. Lamar,” they wrote.
Naomi Martin, a Dallas Morning News reporter, wrote on Twitter that a source told her that Guyger did not know Jean before the shooting and had moved into the upscale apartment complex only the month before.
Martin’s source told her that Guyger is “devastated. She is so, so sorry for his family.”
This photo below from a family member’s Facebook page was also causing some controversy on social media, however. The man making the hand signals is named Noe Garza and is Guyger’s brother-in-law. He told Dallas Morning News that he and his family are not racist, and he denied the hand signals are white power symbols or are associated with a prison gang, as was widely alleged on social media.
S. Lee Merritt law office wrote on Twitter, “Our office has been retained to represent the estate of #BothamShemJean. Our first & foremost priority will be to ensure justice is served for this family. That includes holding Amber Guyger accountable for her crimes as well as ID’ing all responsible for enabling this incident.”
Before the officer was arrested and charged, the family lawyer criticized a several day delay, which occurred as the Texas Rangers investigated. “There was at least enough evidence for a charge of manslaughter, and there is likely evidence for even stiffer penalty charges,” Merritt said in a press conference before the arrest, saying it was “incumbent on law enforcement and the District Attorney’s office” to issue a warrant for the officer’s arrest. Merritt called it “deferential treatment for law enforcement officers,” saying that Jean’s family is very upset. “We ask that they (law enforcement officers) be treated like any other citizen… for an arrest to be made.”
The Jean family attorney has also revealed that there were noise complaints made by downstairs neighbors about Botham Jean’s apartment. Guyger lived below Jean.
Merritt denied social media claims that Guyger knew Jean before the shooting, saying, “We have nothing to substantiate those claims. Certainly no one that has been attached to the family or any of the law enforcement officers we’ve spoken to can confirm that, in fact they say just the opposite.”
A press release from Ben Crump law firm, and sent to Heavy, reads, “Acclaimed civil rights attorney Ben Crump and Dallas attorney Lee Merritt were retained as co-counsel by the family of Botham Shem Jean. Jean was slain last week by an unidentified Dallas police officer who mistakenly thought Jean’s apartment was her own. Jean, a native of St. Lucia, was a risk assurance specialist for PricewaterhouseCoopers.”
Her sister posted photos of Amber Guyger on Facebook that you can see throughout this article before scrubbing her page of photos that can be seen publicly. A photo that circulated widely on social media early on – and which shows Botham Jean with several women – came from Jean’s Instagram account but does not show Amber Guyger. Jean’s employer said a widely circulated viral photo showing Jean with women showed friends and a co-worker and not Guyger. In one photo on Facebook, Guyger posed with a woman wearing an All Lives Matter shirt.
“Preliminary information suggests that the officer arrived home in full uniform after working a full shift,” police wrote in the earlier news release. “The officer reported to the responding officers that she entered the victim’s apartment believing that it was her own. At some point, the officer fired her weapon striking the victim. Responding officers administered aid to the victim, a 26-year-old male, at the scene. The victim was then transported to the hospital and pronounced deceased.”
Police Chief Renee Hall said at a previous press conference that she did not know when the officer’s shift ended. A blood draw was taken from the officer to test for drugs and alcohol, Hall said.
Here’s a photo of Botham Jean’s door. It shows he had a red rug outside it, at least after the shooting.
More memorials grew into the next day.
The red mat was gone by Sunday night.
Hall told reporters “it’s not clear what interaction was between them, but at some point, she fired her weapon, striking the victim. She called 911, officers responded in about four minutes. Dallas Fire Rescue also responded and took Mr. Jean to the hospital, where he later died. At the very early stages of this investigation early indications were that we were dealing with an officer-involved shooting. However, as we continued the investigation it became clear we were dealing with much of what appears to be a very unique situation. Therefore, we have ceased handling it under our normal officer-involved shooting protocol.”
On Saturday, police explained the delay in charges in a statement.
“When the Rangers arrived, the investigation was turned over to them and they made the decision to postpone pursuing a warrant, until they could follow up on information that they received from the interview with the officer,” Dallas police explained, without elaborating. “The Texas Rangers will take the appropriate time to review the vast amount of evidence and information secured by Dallas Police Department investigators. This will allow them to be thorough in their decision as to how to move forward.”
2. Officer Amber Rene Guyger, Who Has Worked for the Department for Almost 5 Years, Cried in the Hall for Minutes, a Witness Alleges But Was Sexting Her Partner That Night
A spreadsheet of Dallas police officers lists Amber Guyger with the following information: “Guyger, Amber R. Police Officer 11/6/2013 Dallas Police Dept – Uniform 24.85 Active Full-time (Permanent) WHT F 2080.” Guyger has deleted her Facebook account.
Prosecutors told the jury that Guyger was distracted by sexting another police officer the night of the shooting. They used this claim to bolster their argument that Guyger wasn’t as tired as she claimed and added that she deleted some messages, according to Fox News.
That officer, Martin Rivera, was formerly Guyger’s police partner. The texts said things like “Super horny today too,” from Guyger to Rivera. “Me too,” he wrote. Although Guyger did work overtime that night, it was mostly office work, prosecutors told the jury.
A woman who uses the name @bunny.babbs posted two videos on Instagram that she wrote captured the aftermath of the shooting. Heavy was able to confirm that the hallway and circumstances shown in the videos matched the scene through an interview with Jean’s next-door neighbor, Alyssa Kinsey, who heard the gunshot and watched some of it unfold through her apartment door peephole. The Instagram user has now privatized her account. Here are the videos she posted. The first one shows the CPR attempt; it’s tilted sideways in part because that’s how the user posted it.
Here is the second video:
The Instagram user wrote the following with the videos:
“My night was interrupted by a cop ‘mistakenly’ murdering a neighbor. I seem to be the only one with any footage of this , so here you go.. first video is the cop a few seconds after she pulled the trigger, crying. And the second video is them pretending to revive what I believe to be an already deseased (sic) victim. These clips come from a 10 minute video. First clip is 57 seconds into the video. The second clip is at 7:33… there was 6 minutes she spent crying in the hall. I’m not intrested in selling this footage so go ahead and tag the blogs you want cause I’m sure my post and/or IG will magically disappear soon. #BothamJean.”
Here’s a screenshot of the post as it originally appeared on Instagram:
Alyssa Kinsey, Jean’s next-door neighbor who was so close she shared a wall with him, wrote on Facebook, “This happened in the apartment next to me, to my very kind and friendly neighbor. I am absolutely heartbroken. Please, please keep his family in your prayers and send love and light their way. I cannot even begin to imagine the pain they are in.” She shared a GoFundMe page for Jean’s family. It reads, “We are mourning the loss of our brother Botham Jean. He was a great Christian example and an inspiration to us all. We are asking for donations to cover funeral arrangements, his family’s travel expenses, and anything else they may encounter. He will be missed.”
In the interview with Heavy, Kinsey said, “I was talking to my boyfriend, heard a shot, then some sort of commotion. Sounded like yelling/running/some loudness so I jumped up, ran to the door, looked out the peep hole, didn’t see anything at that moment but I could hear a woman calling 911 and hyperventilating.”
Kinsey gave Heavy this video showing the hallway in the apartment.
Kinsey told Heavy that she saw the female officer pacing in the apartment hallway. She heard the officer say the apartment number and the words “was shot,” but she adds, “she was pacing away from me at that point.”
After hearing the shooting, Kinsey says, “I then posted on nextdoor app as a warning. I did not hear pounding or yelling before the shot. These halls are echoey so I feel like I’d hear it but maybe not.”
She added, “I’ve never seen a cop on this part of our floor” before. “This is just so so awful. I want justice for him and his family,” said Kinsey, who added that she had never seen the officer before.
She told Heavy that she tried to step outside her apartment “once the cops started swarming but they told me to stay inside.” She heard people saying things like, “We have an officer working on CPR” and “Where’s the stretcher.”
Kinsey added, “I heard the lady cop say ‘I need to call my partner’ and another cop said ‘okay go but don’t tell him anything.’” She called what happened an “absolute tragedy” and characterized the story as “bizarre.”
She said of her neighbor, “He’s the last person I could ever imagine this happening to.” To show what a good person Jean was, she told the story about how she was struggling to move furniture in the apartment complex hallway one day. “But it proved to be a challenge and he came down the hall and saw me struggling, kind of laughed at how ridiculous I looked, but he swooped in and helped me get everything in my place and made sure that was all of it out of my car,” she said.
Jean, she said, was the only neighbor who said “hi” when she moved into the apartment complex. They spoke about their jobs and Jean “always had a good attitude” and characterized his current job as a “stepping stone.”
“He helped me move furniture, we drank beers on the porch together, talked about living in Dallas and traffic and life, him and my boyfriend talked and argued sports. He always had a huge smile that would light up a room” and always made sure to say, “Hey, how are you?” recalled Kinsey.
“He was a genuinely great man.”
Amber Guyger does appear in a legal document as responding while an officer to an old unrelated domestic-violence incident, showing the kind of duties she had on the police force. “Amber Guyger, an officer with the Dallas Police Department, testified that she was dispatched to 8634 Cardella Avenue, Dallas, Texas, on a family violence call. She talked to (name removed by Heavy). Officer Guyger described (the woman) as afraid, scared, and frantic. She said that (the woman) was afraid that appellant would come back. Officer Guyger obtained statements from (the woman) and her sister and took photographs of (the woman’s) injuries. Although Officer Guyger noted red marks on (the woman’s) arm, she did not see any marks on Louise’s neck. Officer Guyger saw a car parked on the side of the street with broken windows.”
Guyger had finished a 12-hour shift at some point before the shooting after working overtime because she made a late arrest, police said. A written statement from the police department said the officer was “tired” and thought she was in her apartment, but at a press conference, Chief Renee Hall would not confirm that the officer being tired was the reason she went to the wrong apartment.
Hall did not provide any other information about the officer other than saying she is a “Caucasian female” who worked in the patrol division.
Many people on social media have expressed outrage over the bizarre circumstances of Botham Shem Jean’s death.
“The tears won’t stop flowing for #BothamShemJean ? he was chilling in his own house, minding his business! This officer should be in JAIL!!!!” wrote one woman. “Now in America if a cop mistakenly walks into YOUR home… You will get shot… Because hey… This is ‘merica. #BothamShemJean,” wrote another.
The Texas Rangers, the state-level police department, were brought into the investigation.
Police Chief Renee Hall said her department requested the Texas Rangers conduct an independent investigation into the shooting. Hall said when they first responded to the call, they believed it was an “officer-involved shooting,” but the circumstances changed as more details were revealed, creating, “a very unique situation.” She said, “We have ceased handling it under our normal protocol as an officer-involved shooting.”
Hall said the fact the officer was off duty changed it from being an officer-involved shooting investigation.
“At my request we are in the process of obtaining a warrant based on the circumstances that we have right now,” Hall said. “We have also invited the Texas Rangers to begin an independent investigation. They have just arrived a moment ago and they are currently being briefed. I’ve spoken with the Jean family, his sister, Alissa, specifically. My condolences have been given to them and we have reassured them that we are working diligently and we have invited an outside agency to investigate this. Right now there are more questions than we have answers. We understand the concerns of this community and that is why we are working as vigorously and meticulous as we can to ensure the integrity of this case and the integrity of the department is upheld. In doing so, we hope to bring understanding and clarity to the family.”
On social media, people expressed confusion how the officer could have thought Jean’s apartment was her own. “So getting this straight, you ‘accidentally’ walk into someone else’s apt (how do you get in?) shoot them dead, realize then it wasn’t your apt, be like ‘oh my bad’? Y’all had identical furniture & family photos? #BothamShemJean,” wrote radio host @questlove on Twitter. He’s been a drummer for Roots, NBC’s talkshow in-house band.
3. Amber Guyger Was Involved in a Previous Officer-Related Shooting & Botham Shem Jean’s Mother Says Her Son ‘Did No One Any Wrong’
If anyone should have used the Castle Doctrine, it was Jean, prosecutors say, because he was just minding his business inside his own apartment when Guyger shot him. “Who does castle doctrine protect? Homeowners. It protects homeowners against intruders, and now, all of a sudden, the intruder is trying to use it against the homeowner. What are we doing?” the prosecutor said.
The decision to allow the jury to consider the Castle Doctrine – or Stand Your Ground law – defense was made by Judge Tammy Kemp over prosecutors’ objections.
Stories posted online and a database of police shootings identified Amber Guyger as having been involved in a previous officer-involved shooting. In that one, the man lived and she was on duty, news reports show.
The Dallas Police Department’s website wrote in 2017, “The suspect in this offense has been identified as Uvaldo Perez L/M/46. He is being charged with Taking A Weapon from an Officer, Possession of Meth, Possession of Marijuana, and Parole Violation. Mr. Perez remains hospitalized at this time. The officer involved in this incident is Officer Amber Guyger, #10702. She is assigned to the Southeast Crime Response Team (CRT) and has been on the department for three years and six months.”
The police website included this description of the Perez shooting:
On May 12, 2017, at about 8:58 am, Dallas officers from the Crime Response Team responded to the 8300 block of Reva Street after receiving information from undercover officers that a wanted female was at the location. When the uniformed officers arrived, they observed the female they believed to be wanted sitting in the front passenger seat of a vehicle with a male sitting in the front driver seat and another male sitting in the back seat. While officers were attempting to identify the female passenger, the male passenger sitting in the rear seat exited the vehicle after being told repeatedly by officers to remain seated. The male suspect then engaged in a physical confrontation with the officers. The suspect was able to gain control of one of the officer’s taser causing an officer to draw their firearm and shoot the suspect. The suspect was transported to an area hospital where he is listed in stable condition. There were no officers injured. This incident will be documented on case number 106261-2017
Mundo Hispanico, a Spanish-language publication, also wrote a story on the Perez shooting. The translation indicates that police were searching for a woman and made a traffic stop. During it, Perez is accused of trying to take the officer’s taser, and it was at that point that he was shot. He was shot in the abdomen but was listed as being in stable condition.
Perez entered a plea deal and admitted the charges against him, receiving a two-year prison sentence.
Botham Shem Jean comes from a prominent family in Saint Lucia. According to St. Lucia Times, Jean was the son of Allison Jean, described as “former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and sustainable Development” and Bertram Jean, who was a store supervisor for Water and Sewerage Company Inc., known as WASCO. His uncle, Ignatius Jean, is “Chief Executive Officer of the Caribbean Water and Sewerage Association Inc. (CAWASA) and former government Minister and Parliamentarian,” St. Lucia Times reported.
Jean’s mother, who is also known as Allie Jean, told NBC News from Saint Lucia: “He did no one any wrong.” The shooting occurred at an upscale apartment complex called South Side Flats not far from downtown Dallas, NBC reported.
“Somebody has to be crazy not to realize that they walked into the wrong apartment,” Allie Jean said. “He’s a bachelor. Things are different inside.”
Botham Shem Jean’s uncle Earl Jean, who is a coach from Saint Lucia, posted a photo tribute to his deceased nephew on Facebook.
“My heart goes with you my boy…never thought this day would come ,wanted to be there for you always my boy …how can this nasty world take you away from me ….this is the worst day of my life thus far….uncle loves you so much …there goes Mr.botham shem Jean….iam lost for words…part of me has left !Gone with the Angel’s ….lord keep me sane,” wrote a heartbroken Earl Jean.
Jean’s family members repeatedly expressed pride in him on Facebook. On a photo of Jean wearing a suit and tie, another relative wrote, “This is my work of art – dedicated, committed, hard-working, intelligent – Vote Botham for President!”
General Manager of WASCO Edmund Regis told St. Lucia Times that the company was extending sympathies to Jean’s family, saying, “this is undoubtedly what can only be described as a difficult time of bereavement for the Jean family.”
In Arkansas, while attending college, Jean was involved in the College Church of Christ. “He led singing often in HU Chapel and at the College Church of Christ in Searcy,” Glenn Dillard, Harding’s assistant vice president for enrollment management, said to The Christian Chronicle. “He had a beautiful voice.”
Tracy Moore, a preacher who knew Jean through church, told the Christian news site, “I used to go to the Caribbean Lectures and met him there. An impressive young man. A powerful singer and always a spirit of joy that flowed from him.” Christian Chronicle reported that Jean and his family are involved in Church of Christ in Saint Lucia as well. He was known for running the technology for a series of church lectures in the Caribbean.
He appears in this video of a church lecture.
4. Amber Guyger Was the Only Woman on an Elite Police Unit & Commented on Fitness Websites
The Dallas Morning News reports that Guyger was the “sole woman” selected to serve on an “elite critical response team of about 10 officers who make high-risk arrests in the division’s crime hot spots.”
Online property records indicate that Amber Guyger might not have lived in the apartment complex where the shooting occurred for long. She has long-standing ties to Arlington, Texas, per online records.
On the Internet, she appears to have shown an interest in fitness, sometimes commenting on fitness stories or websites.
On Facebook, Botham Shem Jean wrote that he had studied “accountancy” at Harding University. He also studied at Sir Arthur Lewis Community College, went to St. Mary’s College, and was from Castries, Saint Lucia. At St. Mary’s, Jean studied accounting and mathematics, and was the Young Leaders president and on the debate teams and in the choir.
His Facebook page said that he had lived in Searcy, Arkansas. He wrote in 2013, “I miss St. Lucian food :( I really want a breadfruit, dasheen, greenfig and saltfish now.”
Harding University is a private college in Searcy, so it appears Jean was there to study accounting several years ago. A former classmate confirmed this in an email to Heavy, writing, “I went to Harding with Botham. I can confirm he graduated from there and was living in Dallas. A great leader on our campus and will be missed.”
The university released a statement to the Dallas Morning News that read, “We’re all deeply grieved. He was just one of those people who really stood out, with his voice and his leadership.”
He graduated from college in 2015, news reports say. “I always saw Botham around campus. He always wanted to lead in chapel in whatever way he could. He was always so nice and so kind. He was definitely a light at Harding – one who I could never forget. Prayers for his family and friends,” wrote Amy Johnson on Twitter.
His page also says he worked for a company named Harris Paints. More recently, according to his LinkedIn page, Botham Shem Jean was working for the major consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dallas, Texas, as a “title risk assurance experienced associate.” He had held the position since July 2016, his page says, but had worked for the company since 2015.
“This is a terrible tragedy. Botham Jean was a member of the PwC family in our Dallas office and we are simply heartbroken to hear of his death,” PricewaterhouseCoopers said in a statement.
5. Family Members Had High Hopes for Botham Jean, With His Uncle Once Writing That ‘the World Is at Your Door’
Jean’s uncle Earl commented on his thread three years ago that the future looked very bright for Jean.
“Good looking and intelligent young Jean….the world is at your door…But everything in Gods timing. ..always proud of you!!” wrote Earl Jean.
On Twitter, Jean’s cover photo reads “Resist.” His tweets are private. “IzaLucian ?? — Can do anything, Can’t do everything,” his profile reads.
His mother, who still lives in St. Lucia, wrote, “Looking good my son!” Other comment threads similarly filled with flattery. “Look up Man in the dictionary and this photo will be next to it,” wrote one friend. “Presidential photo,” wrote one.
“This boy is and WILL ALWAYS BE a STAR!!!” wrote a woman named Desi Charles.
Omar Suleiman, a Dallas-based activist, wrote on Facebook that a vigil would be held Friday night at the Dallas Police Headquarters at 7 p.m. “You don’t just get to walk in someone’s house, shoot them dead, and say whoops I thought it was my own house. Join us tonight and demand justice for #BothamShemJean,” he wrote. He added that any other suspect would be in jail.
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