Attorneys hail verdict in Dallas ex-cop’s trial

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Botham Jean’s mother, Allison Jean, rejoices in the courtroom after fired Dallas police Officer Amber Guyger was found guilty of murder, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019, in Dallas. Guyger shot and killed Botham Jean, an unarmed 26-year-old neighbor in his own apartment last year. She told police she thought his apartment was her own and that he was an intruder. (Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News via AP, Pool)

DALLAS (AP) — The Latest on the trial of a former Dallas police officer charged in the shooting death of her neighbor inside his apartment (all times local):

11:50 a.m.

Attorneys representing the family of a black man killed in his own apartment by a white Dallas police officer called a guilty verdict in the case “a huge victory.”

Attorney Lee Merritt, who represents the family of Botham Jean, says Tuesday’s verdict against Amber Guyger is “a signal that the tide is going to change here.”

A jury in Dallas convicted Guyger on Tuesday of murder for the September 2018 death of Jean.

Guyger testified that she entered Jean’s apartment by mistake and killed him, thinking he was an intruder in her home.

Another Jean family attorney, Ben Crump, called the victim “a near perfect person of color” but said that shouldn’t be a requirement for people of color to get justice in the United States.

A gag order for prosecutors and defense attorneys and witnesses remains in effect until after Guyger’s sentencing, which is expected to begin later Tuesday.

WATCH: Court Resumes after Amber Guyger is found guilty in the murder of her neighbor.



WATCH: Amber Guyger is found guilty in the shooting death of her neighbor.

WATCH: Family of Victim react to guilty verdict in Amber Guyger case

11 a.m.

Cheers could be heard in the Dallas County courthouse after a judge announced a guilty verdict in the trial of a former Dallas police officer in the shooting death of her neighbor.

Family members of Botham Jean and others embraced shortly after Judge Tammy Kemp announced that Amber Guyger was convicted of murder. She fatally shot Jean, an accountant from the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia, in September 2018.

Someone yelled, “Thank you, Jesus” following the verdict.

Guyger, who was fired following the fatal shooting, sat alone at the defense table and wept after the verdict announced.

The jury is expected to return Tuesday afternoon for the punishment phase of the trial. Guyger faces five to 99 years in prison.

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10:45 a.m.

A white former Dallas police officer has been found guilty of murder in the fatal shooting of her unarmed, black neighbor in his apartment.

A jury convicted Amber Guyger Tuesday in the killing of Botham Jean in September 2018.

Guyger was off-duty but still in uniform after a long shift when she shot the 26-year-old accountant from the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia.

At trial, Guyger apologized for killing Jean and said she feared for her life upon finding the door unlocked of what she thought was her apartment.

Guyger’s lawyers called the shooting a “tragic, but innocent” mistake.

Prosecutors questioned how Guyger missed numerous signs that she was at the wrong apartment.

Jean was unarmed and had been eating ice cream before Guyger entered his apartment.

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10:10 a.m.

Attorneys for the family of a man who was fatally shot in his apartment by a Dallas police officer say the jury at the officer’s murder trial asked about the castle doctrine defense presented in the case.

The doctrine enshrined in Texas law gives a resident the right to use deadly force to defend themselves or their home if they reasonably believe that it’s immediately necessary.

Amber Guyger testified that she thought she was in her own apartment when she killed Botham Jean in his home in September 2018.

The jurors also had questions about the definition of manslaughter.

Daryl Washington, an attorney for Jean’s family, said Tuesday that the judge told the jurors to rely on the guidance they were given Monday after closing arguments.

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9:15 a.m.

A jury has resumed deliberations in the murder trial of a former Dallas police officer who fatally shot her neighbor in his apartment.

Amber Guyger is charged in the September 2018 killing of Botham Jean.

The jury can convict Guyger of murder, manslaughter or can choose to acquit. Jurors deliberated for a couple of hours Monday afternoon and resumed deliberations Tuesday morning.

Guyger testified that she mistook Jean’s apartment for her own after a long shift and that she believed he was an intruder. The 31-year-old Guyger has said she feared for her life.

Prosecutors say it’s absurd Guyger didn’t pick up on clues that she was at the wrong apartment.

Guyger was charged with murder then fired from the force.

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