Police

Ex-Cop, Who Killed Her Neighbor After Accidentally Entering His Apartment, Convicted of Murder

Jury rejects attempt to claim she feared for her life and acted in self-defense.

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After less than 24 hours of deliberations, a jury has found a former Dallas police officer who shot and killed her neighbor after mistaking his apartment for her own and treating him as an intruder guilty of murder.

The guilty verdict comes after a week-long trial in which Amber Guyger's defense tried to show that Guyger was justified in killing her 26-year-old neighbor, Botham Jean. Robert Rogers, Guyger's attorney, stated that Guyger's mistake was a result of exhaustion from working 40 hours in four days, from knowledge of recent burglaries in the complex, and from genuine confusion over whose apartment she was in. The defense also claimed that Jean, when he heard Guyger enter his apartment, shouted "Hey! Hey!"—which prompted Guyger to draw her weapon and demand that Jean show her his hands. Jean allegedly failed to comply with Guyger's order, making her "fear for her life" and fatally shoot Jean.

The prosecution argued that Guyger acted unreasonably by using lethal force, noting that Jean, at the time of Guyger's intrusion, was sitting on his couch enjoying a bowl of vanilla ice cream, and that the trajectory of Jean's bullet wounds suggested that Jean was likely getting up from his couch when Guyger shot him.

Assistant District Attorney Jason Hermus also drew attention to several sexually explicit messages Guyger had sent to her partner the day of Jean's death, containing evidence of Guyger saying that she was "super horny [on the day of Jean's death]," to counter the defense's claim that Guyger's mistake was the result of exhaustion. She sent out one of the messages via Snapchat 30 minutes before shooting Jean, asking, "Wanna touch?"

The guilty verdict comes after Judge Tammy Kemp of the 204th District Court in Dallas County ruled that the jury could, as part of its deliberations, consider the Castle Doctrine, which is a part of Texas' "Stand Your Ground" laws that permits an individual to use lethal force to reclaim property that they "reasonably [believe] the other person had no claim of right [to]" and when "[one] reasonably believes the use of force is immediately necessary." In the same ruling, Kemp also stated that the jury could consider charging Guyger with manslaughter instead of murder. Guyger had the potential to walk free if the jury had decided that the Castle Doctrine was applicable or to serve up to 20 years in prison if the jury had delivered a manslaughter verdict.

Guyger now awaits sentencing for Jean's murder. She faces anywhere from five to 99 years in prison.

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  1. So we’re all good? The system works?

    1. I’m guessing this one was such a big pill to swallow that the jury– which statistically would tend to lean in favor of the police– couldn’t gag it down.

      This story was SO nuts that it produced reasonable conspiracy theories: Like she knew the guy or had a relationship with him, killed him, then depended on the untouchable nature of her profession to carry her through.

      I’m not sure I believe those theories, but they weren’t all half-cocked.

      1. The thing that hung her was that she wasn’t on duty and had no reason to be there. Had she been on duty and walked in the wrong apartment serving a warrant, she would have walked as infuriating as that is.

        But she was off duty and had no reason to be there and seems to have just walked in and murdered the guy. Even a cop can’t get away with that.

        1. Also, it seems the established departmental procedure was that she should call for back-up and then wait before taking action…which would have provided time for her to realize “Oops, wrong floor.” She walked in and started shooting before the victim had time to say more than, “Hey! Hey!”

        2. “But she was off duty and had no reason to be there and seems to have just walked in and murdered the guy. Even a cop can’t get away with that.”

          Cops: Hold my beer.

      2. So the answer is for her to be imprisoned?

          1. For a mistake? She didn’t set out to kill someone. It was the fog of war. Should it have happened? No, it shouldn’t have. But we should all know this is what happens when we tell young girls you can perform at the same level as a man. So before you start pointing the fingers because this is your opportunity to stick-it-to-the-man, look in the mirror and ask yourself how did I contribute to the events that led to this?

            1. It was the fog of war.

              Except she wasn’t actually at war. Is your position really that she should be at war with random strangers in her apartment building, and the rest of society should indulge this delusion? WTF dude.

              But we should all know this is what happens when we tell young girls you can perform at the same level as a man.

              And another WTF dude. I have to assume these posts are missing a /s tag.

            2. Are you serious? You are usually a very thoughtful commenter, so maybe this is just sarcasm. You cannot walk into another person’s apartment, murder that person, then claim something about the “fog of war.”

              1. Are you serious? You are usually a very thoughtful commenter, so maybe this is just sarcasm.

                I don’t think the regular Rufus T. Firefly has a period at the end of his name. Looks like someone is sockpuppetting.

                1. Also, going back to earlier threads, it looks like he’s going by Rufus The Monocoled these days.

              2. That isn’t Rufus, that’s someone new

            3. My first thought on this type of situation is “What would happen if the shooter wasn’t a cop?” If a random person walked into the wrong apartment and shot the person living there there is no doubt that they would be convicted. The same rules should apply to police. In fact, when it comes to shootings, police should be held to a higher standard than the general public. After all aren’t they trained professionals who should know better than the general public when it is ok to pull the trigger? Instead we often see the opposite happen where a cop gets away with a shooting where an average person would be sent to jail. This is one of the rare occasions where that did not happen.

            4. 1. You apparently have no idea what the fog of war means
              2. She wasn’t at war and the fact you believe she was is kind of disturbing
              3. Plenty of women perform just fine as cops, just because Guyger is a fuckup it doesn’t mean your ’50s ideas are vindicated
              4. We have contributed literally nothing to the events that led up to this, and the fact you believe people other then Guygar are partly responsible for her actions just proves how idiotic you are.

            5. Her immediate reaction was to start chucking bullets around. That’s why she should go in. She obviously couldn’t see anything, including whether Jean had his hands up, or she would have realized she was in the wrong apartment (I seriously doubt the two apartments were furnished identically).

          2. How libertarian of you. So we have to pay for someone to sit in jail because they committed only an accident that unfortunately resulted in the loss of life. When happens when she gets out of prison? I have to also pay for her any assistance she made need? Wouldn’t have the answer been that she was clearly not police material and should lose her job instead of being a financial drain on society?

            As a reminder to many of you quasi-liberatarians on statins, blood-thinners and on Viagra, none of us can escape entropy. So why not just let her go or at the very lease serve something less than 10 years?

            1. I was going to reply, but it seems you’re either a shoddy attempt at parody or a perfect example of Poe’s Law.

            2. “…none of us can escape entropy.”

              No, but by killing someone, she increased entropy. A living human body is very complicated and ordered, when a person dies their body breaks down to simpler components and its entropy increases.

              She didn’t just kill Botham Jean; she also hastened the heat death of the universe. That’s worth at least 10 years in prison. It’s also an argument against the death penalty, it’s just doubles the increase in entropy.

            3. they committed only an accident that unfortunately resulted in the loss of life.

              That sure is a funny way to say she was responsible for killing an innocent person. If we want to discuss reforming criminal justice and changing how we think of punishment/rehabilitation, by all means, but until then if jail is how we do things then putting her in jail is money well spent.

            4. Seeing the many ways the judge gave the jury to avoid finding her guilty, I’m gonna guess he sentences her to the minimum 5 yrs, and probably probation or house arrest.

            5. Rufus, a slight correction. You don’t know that it was an accident. All you know is that she is claiming it was an accident, and she is a murderer desperate to avoid prison. We can call her a murderer now, because she was convicted beyond a reasonable doubt by a unanimous jury given numerous options to acquit her, and that’s how these facts get decided.

              Given the choice of believing jurors picked for their lack of bias versus a lying convicted murderer trying to get off the hook, I’ll go with the jurors.

      3. I just hope she doesn’t have to much trouble finding her cell, I hear they all look very similar.

        1. But being horny will no longer be an issue.

      4. I still wonder about “murder” vs. “manslaughter”. Doesn’t murder require either intent or extreme indifference/recklessness. I don’t think Amber Guyger intended to go into the wrong apartment or even that she knew she was in the wrong apartment. The prosecutor bringing in the doormat into evidence? I used to live in an apartment building, 9th floor, accidentally got off on the 8th floor, noticed the mural on the wall was different and my first thought was not, “Oh, wrong floor” but rather “Oh cool, they changed the mural”
        The only argument that I would agree with, if she had in fact entered her own apartment and encountered an intruder, she still was not justified in shooting him (or her) – and was required by law to take some other action (call for backup, etc.) then OK.

        1. “Doesn’t murder require either intent or extreme indifference/recklessness.”

          Generally speaking yes. But that’s not a high bar to clear. All that requires is that you intended to kill someone before you pulled the trigger, not that it was part of plan. And it’s hard to argue that you didn’t intend to kill someone if you point a gun you know was loaded at someone and pull the trigger (and I only intended to wing them would get you extreme indifference/recklessness).

    2. The judge specifically said the jury could consider “castle doctrine” on the basis that she thought she was in her own apartment.

      So the “system” may work, but I don’t think it’s unfair to say that judge should not

      1. of course the castle doctrine would also apply to the resident as well or does it only apply to cops in the wrong house now

        1. That’s what the prosecutor said. He said it was ridiculous to invoke castle doctrine here since it would apply to the victim, not her.

        2. Sure it would, but so what? It’s like pointing out that Martin might have had a Stand Your Ground defense against Zimmerman had he killed him instead of the other way around.

          1. Except that all the evidence and witness testimony indicated that Martin was the attacker.

            1. But if Martin had been alive to speak and defend himself, and Zimmerman dead and unable to defend himself, we might all believe the opposite — a moral Schrodingers Cat. I took two lessons from this case:
              – Some fights are consensual (until, of course, someone regrets it)
              – History is written by the winners: If you’re fighting and there is no one else around, your odds of vindication increase if you kill your adversary, so you can blame them
              This episode was a milestone in my path to moral relativism.

              1. If you believe that, you don’t fully understand the facts of the case.

                1. He gets that Martin was the attacker. The point is, had the outcome been different and Martin had managed to turn the gun on Zimmerman, Martin could have availed himself of SYG. We understand that Zimmerman’s case was a classic self-defense case that probably never should have gone to trial.

                  1. Zimmerman was looking for a fight when he got out of his car to find Martin, who in turn was looking for a fight when he attacked Zimmerman. The fight was consensual. Maybe, at some point, it became non-consensual, as Martin was bleeding out. Or, maybe, Martin had already decided to kill Zimmerman or die trying. If Martin had turned the gun, he could have cited SYG. Either way, might makes right, you shouldn’t start a fight you can’t finish, and life is about the natural consequences of your mistakes, even if they are unforeseen.

                    1. Zimmerman was looking for a fight when he got out of his car to find Martin

                      The evidence and testimony do not support that.

                  2. Martin was the attacker…Martin could have availed himself of SYG.

                    You contradict yourself.

          2. Had Martin successfully killed Zimmerman, Stand Your Ground would have been available as a defense. The problem, though, is that the evidence wouldn’t likely have been available for Martin to successfully claim self defense anyway.

            After all, Martin was the aggressor in that encounter, and thus wasn’t innocent, so he didn’t have one of the five elements required to successfully claim self defense.

            1. Bah, Martin could reasonably have argued that being followed in the manner that Zimmerman did was an assault in and of itself (in Florida, a threat of force is classified as assault). Martin clearly thought he was defending himself, in any case. I don’t know how well that would have flown with a jury, but it’s not a nonsensical argument.

              Both of them had a rational case for self defense against the other. Zimmerman for starting the conflict. Martin for escalating it to violence.

              1. The question isn’t whether Martin thought he was defending himself, but whether he had a lawful recourse to armed self defense.

                Some states have an imperfect self defense law, which he might have availed himself of – but that would still be manslaughter, even in those states.

                1. If Martin had turned the gun on Zimmerman, the presentation of facts would have changed substantially. Martin could assert that Zimmerman pursued him, attacked him, threw the first punch, pinned him down, etc. until Martin got on top and turned the gun on Zimmerman to prevent him from pursuing him further until Martin got to safety.

                  Either way, might makes right, you shouldn’t start a fight you can’t finish, and life is about the natural consequences of your mistakes, even if they are unforeseen.

                  1. If Martin had asserted that, the evidence and testimony still would have proven him wrong.

      2. A charitable interpretation of that is the judge was trying to prevent appeals by informing the jury of all possible defenses. Now they can’t appeal with “Well what about castle doctrine?”

        A less charitable interpretation is the judge was trying their best to get the cop off the hook and failed. I’m glad it didn’t work, because on the whole castle doctrine is a good thing and if she got off using it as a defense we’d be rehashing the whole “Stand Your Ground” thing all over again.

        1. The judge did the right thing. If the jury had concluded she reasonably believed she was in her apartment, she should have been acquitted. Not giving the Castle doctrine instruction would have doomed any conviction on appeal.

          1. Seriously? You think “I walked into a stranger’s house and shot them dead, but it’s okay because I wasn’t paying attention to where I was and confused myself” should be a valid defense?

            1. Is it plausible to think someone could have made such a mistake? Yes, and in such a case perhaps it should be a defense to reduce the severity of the crime you’ll be found guilty for.

              Does it seem like that was the case in this particular case? Perhaps, but apparently the jury didn’t think so.

              Hence trial by jury.

              The question you should perhaps ask is if you murder someone on purpose is it worse than if you kill them by mistake? Our entire legal system seems to think doing it on purpose is worse. Perhaps your moral system says otherwise.

              Obviously, our justice system has it’s flaws but I’m not so sure this is an example of those flaws.

              1. The question you should perhaps ask is if you murder someone on purpose is it worse than if you kill them by mistake?

                The “mistake” was her being in someone else’s home by accident.

                How she handled that mistake, by pulling her firearm with intent to kill (and succeeding at doing so), was a decision. She didn’t have to draw. She didn’t have to fire. She didn’t have to shoot to kill.

                This argument is as absurd as a burglar suing you because they cut themselves on the glass of the window they broke on their way in.

                1. On the contrary, in self defense law, mistakes are allowed, even if they result in the death or injury of someone. It is sufficient to observe that a reasonable person would have concluded that their life was in danger, had that reasonable person found themselves in similar circumstances.

                  1. But there is the rub. I suppose it’s how you think of the “reasonable person” language.

                    A reasonable person may, in the course of life because we are imperfect, find themselves unknowingly in the wrong place (like this guys apartment) and act in a way that does not match the reality of the surroundings.

                    OR

                    A person, acting reasonably at the time thereby being considered a reasonable person, would recognize and know they were in the wrong place and adjust their actions to match accordingly (thereby not shooting this guy).

            2. I think it helps to ask yourself how the Dallas PD would have reacted had Botham Jean accidentally interrupted an off-duty Amber Guyger having ice cream on her own couch and shot her with his side piece in self-defense before realizing he was in the wrong apartment.

              I’ll bet they’d be all over themselves to ask the community to be understanding.

          2. If the jury had concluded she reasonably believed she was in her apartment, she should have been acquitted.

            But if she was culpably reckless in coming to that belief, she should not be acquitted. Apparently the jury found, as I do, that it was not plausible that would not recognize the apartment she was in was not hers had she taken just a second to think instead of opening fire on an unarmed man. That is, unless her apartment was furnished and decorated identically to Jean’s.

            1. Really, you’ve never miss-identified your car (or rental car) in a lot?
              Your brain will easily make excuses for things that seem out of place.
              However, if you tell me that even if she was in her own apartment and still would not justify the killing…..

              1. Have you ever misidentified your car in a lot, and then killed the occupants rather than take a second to ask what’s up?

                1. Winner winner chicken dinner!

                2. 🙂
                  Seriously. I can’t believe this discussion.

              2. If she had stopped and said “oh hey, sorry, I walked into the wrong apartment, you really should lock your door”, we wouldn’t be having this debate.

                We’re only having this debate because, after making a mistake, she compounded it with a dead body.

                It shouldn’t surprise you that dead bodies make many “innocent mistakes” not-so-innocent.

              3. Yes, I did exactly that. Same make and color, one row off in the parking lot. Pulled open the door and there was a scared young woman in the driver’s seat.

                I decided not to kill her.

                Much the opposite…I was profoundly grateful she didn’t kill me, which WOULD have been a reasonable split second decision. Jean had much more cause to kill Guyger than vice versa.

      3. Even if the castle doctrine could be considered “bizarrely only for her, but not the real resident”, said doctrine does not allow the deadly use of force unless there’s a reasonable justification for it. Otherwise we could all just be killing anyone who stepped into our home, even if invited. The Castle Doctrine is not a magic shield against prosecution for killing people within the four walls of our domicile.

        1. it isn’t!? Shit, and I was having the inlaws over Friday.

          1. There’s always TGIFriday’s.

      4. “The judge specifically said the jury could consider “castle doctrine” on the basis that she thought she was in her own apartment.”

        In Texas, “It is a defense to prosecution that the actor through mistake formed a reasonable belief about a matter of fact if his mistaken belief negated the kind of culpability required for commission of the offense.”

        So the judge correctly instructed the jury on castle doctrine, and the jury correctly found that her mistake was unreasonable.

      5. The Castle doctrine is relevant, in this case. The judge has the responsibility to explain the finer legal points in play to the jury, and since the defense was using a self-defense claim, it was necessary for the judge to explain Texas self-defense law, and what determinations the jury needed to make. In this case, Castle doctrine makes use of lethal force justified (even against an unarmed man) in one’s home, so the jury needed to determine if it was objectively reasonable for her to have believed she was in her own home.

        Note that the judge also explicitly told the jury they could charge manslaughter if they wanted – and by Texas law she’s pretty much dead to rights on manslaughter, so I think it’s pretty clear the judge was just doing their job properly without any particular bias.

    3. The defendant is a woman convicted for standing up to Male Privilege. The Patriarchy oppresses another strong woman.

      /sarc

    4. And she will do great in prison. They really respect cops in prison.

    5. She’s a woman first and a cop second so of course it worked.

    6. We won’t know that until the sentencing.

    7. Cops LOVE threatening, and especially shooting people, criminal or not. I had a jackass of a cop pull me over for driving in the center lane of an expressway where I live. This is not, as you all know, illegal, but apparently Mr. Crooked Cop wanted to have a little fun by pulling me over. I wish I had gotten his badge number (which cops should be required to give ANY TIME they pull someone over) as I’d sue his ass. I know that most suits don’t produce much, but at least this crooked cop would be inconvenienced and known as a crook.

    8. Yes. The system worked.

    9. The most powerful moment in this trial – which occurred after sentencing – is Botham Jean’s brother forgiving Amber Guyger.

      Very surprised no commenter mentioned it and it didn’t appear in the article either.

  2. wow vindictive jury.

    1. Don’t fret. The judge will likely give her a lower-than-normal sentence.

      1. Does the jury not have input when it comes to sentencing?

        1. Mandatory minimums say no, they don’t. Well, that and the law itself. Judges decide sentences in accordance with the law. Or, at least, they are supposed to.

          1. I don’t know about TX, but in some places juries decide sentences in at least some cases.

        2. right! she chose jury-sentencing before trial bc Judge Hometown wouldn’t move the trial

      2. No they won’t, as juries don’t assess sentences, prosecutors and judges do. Juries only decide if the prosecuting attorney has made his/her case or not..

    2. Seven of on the jury are African-American. I can only make a wild guess where they resided on the political spectrum and their thoughts on being given an opportunity to convict someone that is white.

      1. I take it you also make assumptions about majority-white juries, their political preferences, and proclivity to go after other races?

        1. Whites are much more diverse in their political leanings. Therefore, it’s much harder to make an educated guess where they lean. The other group, however, is much easier to make an assumption on. Why you think this isn’t so boggles my mind.

        2. Not to be the defender of trolls but…

          This morning on NPR (I know… leave it alone) they interviewed a black pastor who they referred to as a leader of the black community in Dallas. He specifically stated that the racial make up of the jury was very likely related to how they determined the case. He said they (not exact quote) “knew where they stood historically in this country” and that that thinking helped guide them to their decision.

          Infuriating… but it’s what he said.

          1. I heard that too on NPR. I experienced “reverse racism” regularly married to an Indian for 20 years. It’s a thing. Up here, they brag about defending their own…as they say.

      2. You will improve America, Rufus, when you take your stale, bigoted thinking to the grave and are replaced by a better person in our electorate.

        Thanks in advance for improving America in your special way.

        1. He’s Canadian, comrade.

          1. Not this fake Rufus.

        2. I can’t wait for all the bigots in America to die off, either. It’s still an open question, though, of what will take place of the Democratic Party when that day comes.

    3. Her defense was entirely dependent on whether the jury would find credible her claims of thinking that she was in her own apartment and that the victim was about to attack her. Even Helen Hayes would have had a tough time selling that.

      1. “stupid chick w/gun” and “murder” didn’t mesh in this case imho

        she made the mistake of putting on the record “when I fired i intended to kill him”

        1. As opposed to firing her sidearm and not wanting to kill him?

          1. no i mean the prosecution got her to say “I intended to kill him” … as opposed to “no dude they were totes warning shots I have no idea how I hit him”

            I don’t think she’s a murderer but the quote gets in the way of the manslaughter lesser charge

            1. What else was she going to say? You make it sound like they Perry Masoned during her trial and got her to admit something we all know to be true: if you shoot center mass the person is going down.

              1. >>>What else was she going to say?

                “no man I wasn’t trying to kill anyone per se I just panicked like an average chick would have and the gun was all I had”

                1. That’s probably the painful truth, but we still must hold adults responsible for knowing where the fuck the are before drawing a pistol.

            2. The prosecutor would have torn that idea to shreds. Any cop knows to not fire warning shots. That’s what shouting is for. If you want to be non-lethal, go for the baton or the taser. The gun is for killing and killing only.

        2. She should have said that she only wanted the bullets to tickle him. Because that’s why people shoot other people.

  3. Good. I believe that culture changes slowly and police culture can only change from outside forces.

    It will take a long and steady stream of cops going to prison for police culture to change. Ending qualified immunity and making cops personally pay at least part of lawsuit settlements will also help.

    The only thing cops understand is negative reinforcement. Lets let ‘em have it.

    1. This case is so out in left field and her actions so without explanation that I don’t think this will deter cops from doing anything. This case is truly a one off.

      1. There’s probably an identifiable percentage of cops looking at this case right now, figuring out how they would have tailored their response or doctored the scene to avoid a prosecution. You know, in case.

        1. The cops even searched his home for drugs, though. What’s amazing is that the blowback for the department as a whole isn’t greater and they’re able to keep the focus on this one cop.

        2. There’s probably an identifiable percentage of cops looking at this case right now, figuring out how they would have tailored their response or doctored the scene to avoid a prosecution. You know, in case.

          Between crooked cops and union reps, I put the probability close to 1. Above 1 if we throw in all LEOs and/or their union reps watching these proceedings while mumbling ‘Phbbt. Amateurs.’ under their breath.

      2. >>This case is truly a one off.

        it is. I’ve been in that building you never know where the eff you are.

        also it felt like the prosecution was trying to lose, like “why are we convicting our own here?” but then it happened anyway

      3. This case is so out in left field and her actions so without explanation

        I think you give her way too much credit. Just like Yanez killed Philandro Castile, she killed him because she was terrified.

        She walks in not paying attention, as evidenced by her entering the wrong apartment, probably looking at her phone. When she looks up because she finally realizes something isn’t right, she freaks out, just like Yanez did. Terror gives her tunnel vision, she doesn’t see the wrong apartment or register the TV and the ice cream, doesn’t recognize her neighbor, all she can see is the threat that has been the focus of years of training. She yanks that gun out, just like in training, and POP! POP! Jean is down before she finally registers he was not a silhouette, but an actual person with a mom and other people who love him.

        They go on and on in cop shows about using their gut to know when something is wrong. If they were trained to use their brain, shit like this might not happen. Then again, it might, most cops aren’t that bright.

        1. That is a nice story but she didn’t receive years of training. She got weeks of training. She didn’t shoot the guy out of some reflex. She shot him because she panicked and is likely more than a little nuts.

          1. People text while driving and crash their cars. People text while walking and run into buildings, doors, traffic, etc. Why would it surprise anyone that she was looking at her phone, got off on the wrong floor and walked into the apartment that corresponded to hers? She doesn’t need to be nuts to shoot him at that point, just terrified.

            The thing is, I am much more leery of frightened cops than angry cops. Angry cops will probably just beat you 9 times out of 10.

          2. Yeah but don’t forget she actually worked ten hour days four days in a row. Ten fucking hours. It’s like it’s the 19th century or something. No one can maintain their sanity after that.

            1. Now we know why the other cops rolled over on her. She was subverting the myth that they need to work 20-30 hours of overtime a week. Jesus, what a lightweight.

            2. What a load of crap, corporate america has been warming up to flexible work arrangements for office workers over the last decade or so. One of the most popular alternate arrangements is 4x10s, a 10 hour work day, but only 4 working days per week. You still get your 40 hours in and have a 3 day weekend every week.

        2. And then, also like Castile, they tried to say it was ok, because look! marijuana! Remember kids, its always the victim’s fault! They shouldn’t have eyeballed the cop.

        3. I’m glad someone remembers Philandro Castile. Jean’s lawyers didn’t mention him when they gave their big speech after the conviction. I think, and have always thought, he deserves first “mention.” His was a case that should never be forgotten.

      4. Left field is where the change TripK2 speaks of has to start. Break the ice with the most flagrant cases, and then we can move in to everyday police murders.

        1. Good point VDep.

      5. At least it helps to debunk the ‘cops are immune to conviction’ perception

        1. Hardly. Cops never were crazy about having females on the force…

  4. This is a bizarre case. There seems to be no connection between her and the victim or any known motive for her to have wanted to murder him.

    I don’t see how she could have confused his apartment for hers. Yeah, maybe she walked in the wrong door but unless the victim had the exact same furniture that she had, she had to have known that she was in the wrong apartment the moment she entered it. And certainly would have known when she saw someone sitting on the coach. How can you walk into an apartment with strange furniture and a person who shouldn’t be there sitting on the coach and not realize you are in the wrong apartment? It is impossible. There is no way you don’t.

    It is interesting to speculate just what this crazy bitch was doing. Did she get high on the power of being a cop and go in there planning to shoot him just for the thrill of it thinking she would get away with it? That is possible.

    I also wonder if maybe she went in the apartment just to fuck with the guy because she could and then after he was understandably upset she freaked out and shot him.

    I would love to hear her actual motive for doing this. Her actions make no sense. She is clearly guilty of murder. But this is one of the most puzzling and senseless things I have ever seen.

    1. I think it’s simple enough — she did get the wrong apt. The door opened just by trying to put her key in the lock — there’s startle 1. Didn’t have time to turn the lights on when she saw Jean silhouetted by the light behind him — startle 2. Cop brain absorbs two startles and spits out “Danger! Gun” and doesn’t get instantaneous obedience, bang bang.

      I’m willing to buy the two startles. I’d understand if the jury said manslaughter. But I’m glad they chose murder, because if it had been any civilian, it would have been charged as murder, and it’s time cops learned that they too are civilians and don’t get an automatic pass for bringing their cop mentality into real world interactions with real people.

      1. You cannot use deadly force unless you reasonably fear for your life. A guy standing there looking at you is not a reason to fear for your life. She is clearly guilty of murder. Now, the fact that she killed him because she is an excitable idiot and not because she was robbing him or a jealous girlfriend is mitigation. I don’t think she deserves life here. But she is guilty of murder.

        1. Good thing she wont be a cop anymore too.

          There are already too many trigger happy cops on the force.

        2. Not so in Texas. The Castle Doctrine does require you to fear for your life.

          1. Sure, but that is only if you are in your house. But even then the person you shoot can’t be lawfully on your property.

            1. Wrong again. Joe Horn shot two people who had rob a neighbor’s house and they were running down the street away from him and he was no billed because of the Castle Doctrine. Good bless the Great State of Texas!

              1. That is not what the law says. Just because Horn got away with it doesn’t change how it is supposed to work.

                1. It set a precedent so it doesn’t matter how you or even the people who wrote the law think it should work. That’s how it does work now because TEXAS!

                  1. Jury decisions are not precedential for precisely this reason.

                    If an appeals court ruled that he was justified in this case, you’d have something. But just because a jury acquitted a guy once for doing something like this does not mean you can try it yourself without also facing trial, and potentially getting a less permissive jury.

              2. And that was a very controversial decision for many reasons. On the other hand, they were clearly thieves who were clearly in the commission of a serious crime. He initially attempted to detain them and then shot when he thought they were starting to fight.

                We cannot have people being vigilantes. However, from a moral standpoint, until he pulled the trigger, he was in the right, even if it was unwise, stopping a crime in progress. If they did look like they were moving to attack him, which we can reasonably assume is the case, then he was also in the right to fire.

                If memory serves, I do not believe it was decided on Castle Doctrine, but the necessity defense. He clearly does not fall under the Castle doctrine. However, that is not a requirement, as necessity is a broader and always applicable legal standard.

            2. To quote you, John:

              If the jury had concluded she reasonably believed she was in her apartment, she should have been acquitted.

              So you’ve argued both that Castle Doctrine protects her as long as she thinks she’s in her house, and that it only works if you’re actually on your house and the victim isn’t lawfully on your property.

              Which John do we believe?

              1. Key word is “reasonably”. Her belief that she was in her iwn home was not reasonable, or at lwast the jury didn’t think so. I don’t either.

                1. Not what I’m objecting to.

                  John has said, here, that Castle Doctrine only applies on your own property, and only if the other person is unlawfully there.

                  He said, above, that reality doesn’t matter, just that she thought she was in her own apartment.

                  Beyond his poor understanding of castle doctrine†, he’s contradicting himself.
                  ________
                  †Any discussion of “Castle Doctrine” really needs a caveat to which state you’re discussing, as its a catch-all term for dwelling-specific self-defense laws, and is not an actual law or policy unto itself. And varies, a lot, state-by-state.

                  1. Texas is pretty broad, You don’t have to feel threatened in anyway. It doesn’t have to be in your house. It doesn’t even have to be your stuff. The person doesn’t have to be on the property unlawfully.

                  2. “John has said, here, that Castle Doctrine only applies on your own property, and only if the other person is unlawfully there.

                    He said, above, that reality doesn’t matter, just that she thought she was in her own apartment.”

                    1. The Castle Doctrine, (in Texas, we’re talking about Texas) applies to one’s home, vehicle, or place of business.

                    2. The “mistake of fact” defense says that reality doesn’t matter if you make a reasonable mistake of fact. But her mistake wasn’t reasonable.

    2. It is theoretically possible that she (and he) rented furnished apartments. If so, it is possible that the landlord bought the same couch for each room. I don’t know that was the case (and given that the defense didn’t try it, I’m guessing it wasn’t) but if it were the case, then the furniture wouldn’t necessarily be a clue about being in the wrong apartment.

      But the clothes, decorations and everything else in the apartment? Those would still seem to be pretty big clues. Also, the stranger sitting on your couch eating ice cream.

      1. Even if it were my house and some lunatic were sitting on the couch eating ice cream and I had a gun, I wouldn’t just shoot him. I might pull out the gun and I certainly would ask him what the hell is going on but I wouldn’t just shoot him. This woman has some serious mental and stability issues. There is just no excuse for that.

        1. I believe women gravitate to that tool they know they rely on since they know clearly, or learn very quickly while on the job, that they don’t have the open-handed skills to take on most men, if not all men. She is result of feminism telling us we are all equal, unless you’re white then you are privileged.

          1. Because male cops are so well known for not pulling the gun out early and often?

            1. They are well known for getting away scott free with pulling guns out early ad often though. Being a woman was her downfall. Well, that and she murdered a guy. But mostly being a woman in this case.

              1. Pretty sure it was unlawfully shooting a guy that was her downfall.

                1. “Pretty sure it was unlawfully shooting a guy that was her downfall.”

                  We are talking about cops here….

      2. The news flashed some of the photos. From what I could see, not only were the furnishings quite different but the cleanliness level was also very different.

    3. I’d give 10,000:1 odds she was fucking this guy on the down low, got jilted, and decided to kill him with the full expectation that she’d get full pussy immunity in addition to full badge immunity. Fuck her.

      1. You’d be wrong. Her story seems accurate, given how many people have said they live in that apartment complex and have walked up to the wrong door before.

        And it still doesn’t matter. Walking into the wrong room is not an excuse for shooting the first person you see in that room.

        1. Yes we should certainly take her for it.

          1. *take her word for it

          2. You’re free to accept your conspiracy theory, but you have zero evidence for it, and there’s been a lot of investigation into this. There’s apparently zero connection between the two other than his apartment being above hers.

            And in the end it doesn’t matter. The fact that it’s an accident doesn’t mitigate the crime. Being trigger-happy is not an excuse, it’s a damnation.

            1. That’s odd you tell someone they have no evidence and then in the second paragraph say that she was “trigger-happy”. How do you know this to be true when you weren’t there?

              1. I mean, she did shoot an unarmed man who was eating ice cream on his own couch in his own apartment. “Trigger happy” may not be a technical term, but colloquially it sure seems to apply.

              2. It’s my assessment of her decision making given the known facts in the case. In this case, he didn’t even have time to ask her why she was in his house. He said, “Hey! Hey!” and then the shots rang out.

                It may not be objectively verifiable that she was trigger happy but I don’t feel inaccurate in describing her so.

                1. Also, keep in mind this: She was trained, in cases like this, to call for back-up and wait in a safe position. That’s apparently department policy in Dallas. She instead went into the apartment on her own prerogative with her gun drawn, despite the fact that she was in no immediate danger.

                  Yeah, she’s a trigger-happy bitch.

                  1. I see a lot of people bringing up police dept. policy for this case – but she wasn’t on duty. What was expected of her was not what police officers are trained to do, but what civilians are expected to do; and you’d better believe no civilian could walk into a man’s apartment, murder him by mistake, and reasonably claim self-defense.

                2. Her social media postings were introduced as evidence.
                  In my opinion, some of them were mall ninja, first person shooter videogamer quality, not suitable for a law officer.

    4. Saw a comment at another site earlier today. The commenter said one night after working a long shift with overtime, he stopped by a restaurant and ordered some take out. He left the building and got into his car. Or what he thought was his car. Said it took him about a minute of struggling to get the key into the ignition before he realized he was in the wrong car.

      This tragic shooting went down in a matter of seconds. Doubt she had time to even look at the furniture etc. She thought she entering her own apartment, saw a man, panicked and immediately pulled her gun a fired. That’s how I see it anyway.

      1. And that makes her guilty of murder. There is no reason to shoot someone under those circumstances. She was not under any reasonable fear for her life.

      2. That’s my guess on it as well – I don’t know the layout on the apartment but I’m imagining a short foyer opening up into a living room and a cased opening into the kitchen off to the side, not much to see from the doorway to immediately differentiate one apartment from the next. Everybody saying she should have immediately known she was in the wrong apartment, well, maybe not. If the layout is the same and there’s not much to see from the doorway, it might take a few steps into the apartment to realize it’s different.

        The real problem here is the Combat Warrior Behind Enemy Lines “shoot first, ask questions late” training that teaches cops every single person you see is the enemy and a lethal threat and must be dealt with accordingly. What the hell happened to “protect and serve”? Who are they expected to serve and protect when everybody is the enemy?

        1. According to SCOTUS, ‘protect and serve’ is just a meaningless slogan.

        2. Your guess would be wrong. There was a huge difference in the furnishings, the general look and the cleanliness level. I’m not sure who had the clean apartment but one of them look pretty nasty. I’d love to see the stills.

      3. This tragic shooting went down in a matter of seconds.

        And whose fault is that?

        1. That’s the crux of the case. It was her fault, and that makes it murder.

      4. That happened to me once. Stopped at the convenience store after a night shift. Walked up to a car and opened the door and there is this guy eating twinkies.

        Took a few seconds as we were both startled but nothing bad happened.

      5. I can beat that. Once I was picking up my car at the repair shop. I paid the bill and got the key at the counter, went out to my car, and started it. Then a guy came running out yelling, “hey! That’s my car!” It was his car. Turned out we drove identical station wagons and my key worked in his car. To top it off, it was a guy I knew and I later ended up buying that car from him. I had two cars that started with the same key.

        1. That’s pretty good. Once my wife and I were at a bar we knew in OKC, but I was tired and went out to nap. Got in my car, went to sleep, was later woken up by the real owner of the car. And both cars were ancient buicks with the same body damage! I started arguing with them, but our car had CO plates and theirs had plates from OK.

    5. Which is why I tend to believe she did know the guy. Maybe we’ll find out on next season of Deadly Women.

    6. “There seems to be no connection between her and the victim”

      They lived in the same apartment building. In fact, the victim lived in the apartment directly above hers. How is that no connection?

  5. I’m finding the reports maddeningly inexact. Reports claim she’s been found guilty of “murder” but don’t specify a degree. First degree murder requires premeditation and other degrees usually require intent which doesn’t even fit the prosecution’s theory of the crime.

    The facts as advanced support negligent homicide. But if she’s been convicted of something worse the media hasn’t even reported what it is based on. All reports seem to care about is framing everything as pro BLM and anti-cop.

    Our media sucks.

    1. I’ve read elsewhere that Texas doesn’t formally have 1st and 2nd degree murder, it’s all just murder. There are sentencing guidelines for different circumstances, but if what I read is correct then they can’t call it 2nd degree murder even though that’s effectively it.

      And there’s plenty of intent here. If you draw your gun, point it at someone and then shoot them you intended to kill them, full stop. You might have valid reasons for intending to kill them, like self defense, but you definitely intended to kill them.

      1. Texas has “Murder” and “Capital Murder.” Capital murder includes killing peace officers or firemen who are on duty, contract killings, mass murders (more than one dead victim in a single act), and a few other cases like an incarcerated man already convicted of murder then committing another murder.

        She was not charged with Capital Murder since she didn’t fit any of those statutes. But she was also convicted of murder instead of the lesser-included charge of Manslaughter.

      2. Technically it’s all criminal homicide (see Texas Penal Code Title 5 Chapter 19). In order of severity,

        1. Capital Murder (eligible for the death penalty)
        2. Murder (no death penalty, 1st degree felony). What Amber Guyger was convicted of.
        3. Manslaughter (2d degree felony)
        4. Criminally Negligent Homicide (State jail felony)

        1. If anything, it should be No. 4 (I prefer she serve no sentence) that should have applied. But you are in a Democrat city with seven members that will most defiantly convict her because she is white, a copy and the person was black that was killed.

          1. Nope. Her behavior went beyond negligence to recklessness.

        2. Murder in Texas can be reduced to a 2nd degree felony if she can prove it to the jury during sentencing was the result of a “sudden passion” arising from “adequate cause”. The elements are pretty straightforward–basically in no way premeditated (it can’t arise out of any previous provocation).

          If that happens, she’ll get 2-20 instead of 5-99 (the standard 1st & 2nd degree felony sentences).

      3. And there’s plenty of intent here. If you draw your gun, point it at someone and then shoot them you intended to kill them, full stop. You might have valid reasons for intending to kill them, like self defense, but you definitely intended to kill them.

        Exactly. She is guilty of murder. All of the stuff about her being in the wrong apartment and panicking is mitigation and means she probably should not go to prison for as long as someone who doesn’t have that mitigation. But it doesn’t make her less guilty of murder.

        1. It’s right there in general gun safety guidance that you’d get on day 1 of any firearms training: Never point your gun at anything you don’t intend to kill/destroy. For most people that means you’d almost never point your gun at someone, cops tend to have a more cavalier attitude on that front than most people do.

          I’m also not inclined to cut her much of a break for those mitigations. Everything she did was fully of her own free will and consequences of her own decision making. She wasn’t forced by anyone to do anything she did. She made a great many mistakes if what she is saying is true, and mistakes that cost lives should have severe consequences.

        2. All of the stuff about her being in the wrong apartment and panicking is mitigation and means she probably should not go to prison for as long as someone who doesn’t have that mitigation.

          They aren’t clear on the distance, but it sounds like her 13.5 hr. shift strung out quick draw might put Lena Miculek to shame.

        3. She said on the witness stand that she intended to kill him. Reason #1 why you never take the witness stand in your own defense.

          1. In this case, she had no choice as she was asserting an affirmative defense to which there were no other witnesses and no conflict over physical evidence.

  6. Seems like manslaughter would have been the most just decision.

    1. Nope. Cops think they are above the law.

      Fuck her. She will get a light sentence anyway.

    2. No. Killing someone in a bar fight where you didn’t intend to kill them is manslaughter, or recklessly mishandling a gun so that it goes off and shoots someone.

      She was completely intending to kill the man, it didn’t matter that she had no premeditation. Her decision to shoot before she even knew who he was, what he was doing, or even where the fuck she even WAS, that makes it murder.

    3. Being so irrationally terrified that you kill someone is not manslaughter.

  7. Who hasn’t come back to their apartment complex after a long shift at the factory, then entered the wrong apartment and shot the guy living there? Police routinely give “civilians” a pass in those situations, so this verdict is shocking.

    /sarcasm tag

  8. It will be interesting to see what her sentence will be. I suspect it will be short as what happened here is negligent homicide and not pre-meditated. And I think that would be fair.
    Sad affair all the way around. A young man’s life taken from him because of the tragic mistake and reactions made by young LEO. And this young LEO will not only lose her freedom for a period time, but will live this the rest of her life. All because she inadvertently went to the wrong apartment. No winners here, only losses for everyone.

    1. The jury rejected her claim that she “simply went to the wrong apartment”.

      She murdered an innocent person for no legally justified reason.

      1. I don’t think they rejected her claim. I think they decided it didn’t matter. Nobody wants to accept that it’s a simple mistake if they’re at home eating ice cream and someone walks in and puts three bullets in their chest.

    2. “It will be interesting to see what her sentence will be. I suspect it will be short as what happened here is negligent homicide and not pre-meditated.”
      Since the victim is black and the perp is white, there is considerable on the judge to give a longer sentence so as not to feed the narrative that she is a privileged white person.

    3. I would agree to making whoever came up with the idea that protect and serve is less important than officer safety serve part of her sentence.

    4. Lesson to learn here? Lock your door.

      1. No. Lesson to learn here- don’t shoot people sitting on their couch eating ice cream.

    5. “All because she inadvertently went to the wrong apartment”.

      As many people have pointed out, most of us have made very similar mistakes and decided not to kill anybody. Pulling the gun was the bigger mistake. But she made a lot more “mistakes” in addition to those two.

      1. She decided to carry a gun off duty while – by her own explicit claim – her judgment was impaired. That alone is, or ought to be, equivalent to killing someone while driving drunk. Which by the way can get you 2-20 years in TX. If she knew she was impaired by working a 40 hr week, she should have called in and had another officer take her gun (and car keys too).

      2. When confronted with the unexpected, she instinctively decided not to question whether she’d made a mistake but instead assumed someone else was committing not just a mistake, not just a crime, but intended to kill her. When most people bump shoulders in the elevator or on a sidewalk, they instinctively say “excuse me”. A few rare people (they’re called sociopaths) instintively jump into karate pose or shove back, assuming the other person wants a fight. Guyger appears to be in the second category, meaning she needs to be put where she can’t share elevators and sidewalks with the rest of us.

      3. Immediately afterward, she decided wailing about losing her job was a higher priority than giving first aid, which kind of gives the lie to your sob story about “live this the rest of her life”. By the way, if a DWI behaved like that after an accident, it would not go over well with a jury either.

  9. God it would be hilarious if she got raped to death in prison for accidentally walking into the wrong cell.

    1. What is it with you and rape fantasies? Posting one is creepy, but this is like, the third time? You certainly do have rape on your mind a lot.

  10. Finally, a brickbat with a happy ending,

    1. Wouldn’t really call this a happy ending. Botham Jean is no less dead today. It is justice, however.

  11. CourtTV comes on OTA and I watched it last night when the prosecutor was giving closing arguments. I was shocked that he was actually trying to get a conviction.

    1. I am not. Contrary to what you guys think, the cops and DAs really don’t think the cops can just wander around and shoot people at all times. They are all about protecting cops on duty. They think that no cop doing his job should ever be second guessed if he shoots someone. That is a stupid way to think but that is what they think.

      This woman wasn’t on duty. And that is a bridge too far even for your typical yahoo DA.

  12. I know Texas likes to go big, but the gap between 5 and 99 years is bigger than big. Is that huge range how they distinguish the levels of murder instead of first, second, etc?

    1. It’s the standard range for 1st degree felonies. Outside of a special exception in the statute, all 1st degree felonies here include that range.

  13. I am very surprised that this happened in Texas, I never would have imagined. But maybe it’s finally going to start getting through to cops that shooting people is not an acceptable first response when you’re not sure what they have in their hand.

    Trigger warning!:

    (And maybe stop hiring women who have no other means of protecting themselves than lethal force. Despite the new science that says men and women are exactly alike in every way, a large man is less likely than a small woman to perceive every threat as potentially lethal. A large man might be more apt to see a threat as nothing he can’t handle with a short left jab and a long right overhand. Women don’t tend to have that option.)

    1. As a woman, I completely agree with Jerryskids

      1. As a woman, I don’t. This wasn’t a matter of a cop thinking she didn’t have the physical capacity to defend herself. This was a woman who walked into someone else’s apartment and shot them. If I remember correctly, most of the murder by cops are done by men.

    2. Because male cops have such a great track record of not shooting people that pose no threat?

      1. It would be interesting to see the stats on that. Are female officers more inclined to draw a weapon?

        1. I don’t know about stats but the training and culture has changed since they started hiring women and smaller guys who don’t know how to fight.

          1. And cops who don’t know how to handle fire arms under pressure. In my son’s police academy class in Houston there were quite a few people who had never held a gun before. They got three days of training but not full days only day of shooting before they were allowed to be cops. Apparently, that’s common.

  14. Harvard’s anti-Asian admissions system ruled constitutional

    A federal judge on Tuesday ruled in favor of Harvard University’s admissions process that court documents show discriminates against Asian-Americans by requiring higher academic achievement for admittance and rating them lower on soft characteristics like “likability.”

    Ugh.

  15. She deserves to be in the clink, but i’m curious if the jump from manslaughter to murder was due to facts not yet public or the racial implications of the case

    1. So after reading some other comments it sounds like murder was the correct charge in that she clearly intended to kill him. Her reasons for doing so may factor into sentencing, but you can’t intentionally shoot someone and walk away with a manslaughter beef.

      Curious how much time she’ll get. I’m guessing towards the lower end, but not the minimum

  16. Lesson for apartment dwellers: lock your door when you are inside.
    Someone else’s key won’t open your door by mistake.

    1. Dude, you sound like a cop.

    2. Victim blaming FTW.

  17. I think that, here at Reason, we can all agree that the real victim is her newly out-of-work immigrant houseboy.

  18. The death of Botham Jean; tragic accident or public service?

  19. It is nice to see that white cops don’t always get away with killing unarmed black men.

    1. Many of these police abuse cases involve white victims, where have you been?

      While I wouldn’t put it past a bent cop to be a racist as well, that’s not the entirety of the problem, not by a long shot.

  20. Is “feared for my life” really an accurate description of the state of mind of a psychopath?

    1. Nothing about her says psychopath. Inept, yes but psychopath, no.

    2. Look, she took the job of murdering people over plant leaves to please prohibitionist politicians. Any child knows you have to kill people as an example so survivors will obey patently idiotic laws. A paycheck goes a long way toward ingraining looter doublethink into the police mentality. The people who vote for parties eager to have cops shoot people for no good reason got a twofer out of the deal. This is their voted-for initiation of deadly force in plain view. Remember that in November 2020.

  21. This is a tragic story and should not have happened, however I am curious about the composition of the jurors. Did she have a jury of her peers? If so I believe it would have been different. The News media has punished the law enforcement so much that it has prejudiced the general public. At the most she should be guilty of manslaughter and given a light sentence. We need good law enforcement and if these kinds of decisions keep going down this way, nobody will want the job or the ones that have a law enforcement job will stop doing their duty for fear of being condemned for being too aggressive. Better training is needed.

    1. “given a light sentence…Better training is needed.”

      She should get the sentence as a “civilian” who (allegedly because of her tiring job) comes into someone else’s apartment without authority (but allegedly by mistake) and kills the person living there.

      But by all means show why a police officer should get more leniently treated than a “civilian.”

      1. I thought about replying to that comment, but honestly, it reads far too much like satire.

        1. Well you know, WAR ON COPS and all.

    2. nobody will want the job or the ones that have a law enforcement job will stop doing their duty for fear of being condemned for being too aggressive.

      What’s the down side?

    3. When you’re off the clock, you’re not law enforcement. Had she acted like a civilian instead of a cop with a warrant, none of this would have happened.

      There is no question better training is needed, not only to protect cops from their own hair-trigger stupidity, but to protect the rest of us from them.

      If an off-duty cop shoots a guy to death in his own apartment, the problem is not that it will make people unjustly wary of cops, but that it will make people rightly terrified of cops.

      1. EXACTLY. Bad cops should be punished, and not coddled, because if bad cops are not punished, it makes everyone justifiably fearful of even good cops, which hinders the cause of justice overall.

        1. Which good cops are those, Jeff? The ones who cover for their corrupt fellow officers, or the ones who searched the victim’s apartment looking for drugs in order to justify murder?

          1. The good cops who do neither of those.

            Team Red wants us to believe that the Good Cops are 99.999% of them and it’s just one or two bad apples. I think that, like most populations of people, there are some good cops and some bad cops, and probably a sizable portion of each one of those. Not all bad and not all good either.

            Even in Libertopia there would be some sort of law enforcement service (either something publicly funded, or a completely private one), and some good cops and bad cops, and the bad cops would presumably be punished if not by their own agencies, then by torts from victimized citizens.

            1. I don’t like the idea of “proving” with the neatness of a geometrical theorem that there are no good police.

              If they’re all guilty then none of them are guilty.

              There may be different levels of temptation to which a police officer, under the wrong circumstances, might yield, and one such temptation would be covering for some of the real bad apples.

              But if I see particular police officers actually enforcing the law – especially against burglars, rapists, and other bad elements – then I’m going to put them in the “good” basket, not into the same basket as the bribe-takers, rapists, trigger-happy shooters, etc.

              1. Because bribe-taking, raping, trigger-happy shooting cops don’t enforce the law sometimes?

              2. You can like someone (or someones) for their best behavior.

                But when we find their worst behavior, and that worst behavior is literally criminal, it’s not unfair to judge them for that worst behavior, regardless of how “good” their best behavior is.

          2. Red-blooded Republican First Responders™ to whom The Platform is dedicated would not have shirked their solemn duty to plant some dope in the victim’s apartment and save a brother, um, sister offissa. That was standard Dallas procedure after the JFK impeachment. Cops brought a throwdown gun, some dope to plant, and… um… oh! mebbe a warrant.

    4. Looky here. Dallas Police Union klavernmasters are alluva sudden subscribing to that scurrilous scalawag rag Reason Magazine to get into the comments! In the 70s, before libertarian spoiler votes were taken seriously, a white Dallas cop killing innocent blacks could count on a commendation from Governor Adolph Briscoe or Bill Clements! The 328% increase in LP votes has made a palpable difference.

  22. Especially since this person committed her crime while off-duty, she should be punished as any civilian would be punished if that civilian had committed the same act.

    If I accidentally enter my neighbor’s apartment and shoot the occupant, I should AT LEAST be charged with some form of negligent homicide, and perhaps some stronger charge, depending on my provable state of mind. That this person has a badge should make no difference whatsoever.

    1. And you’d probably be arrested that same day, not three days later after the police couldn’t retroactively justify it.

  23. For the sake of argument I’m going to give this woman the benefit of the doubt, say she should be set free, and blame this incident on the fact that she’s a woman. Not because I agree with any of that, but I just want to throw that idea out there to see if it is able to gain any traction. Someone that feels women are victimized could latch on while disregarding the negative implications.

    1. She froze. Except for her trigger finger.

      1. No,no,no.
        You see, racism is at play, but not how you would expect. Due to the racism of others she viewed black males as a threat. It’s the fault of the narrative. Out of fear of being raped (Due to the racist narrative) she shot him.

        1. So, some kind of double reverse gotcha where you’re hoping to lure some woke person into saying she’s also a victim because of racism?

          Nope, too complicated. Even the SJW you imagine arguing with would realize this case is a straight win and there’s no need to put any spin on it.

          1. I’m just trying to cover all angles. Her victim being a man has to contribute to her innocence, right?

  24. I was as surprised by this verdict as Jacob Sullum was surprised that the legalization of a few plant leaves is poised to take less than two centuries. My expectations for law-changing libertarian spoiler votes are fast being adjusted. When my mom was a baby, sth like 24000 ku-klux klanbakers occupied the Dallas State Fairgrounds without raising many eyebrows.

  25. A murder conviction works for me. Anyone authorized to use lethal force needs to be held to a higher standard.

  26. Good. Let’s hope it’s closer to 99 years than 5 while fully recognizing it will be the bare minimum.

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