Ex-Dallas Cop Amber Guyger Testifies At Her Murder Trial

Former Dallas Police Officer Amber Guyger was the first defense witness to testify at her own murder trial.

Dallas, TX – The first week former of Dallas Police Officer Amber Guyger’s murder trial ended abruptly on Saturday morning when the judge cancelled a planned full day of testimony in defense of the officer who fatally shot a neighbor she mistakenly believed was in her apartment.

On Thursday, prosecutors rested their case and on Friday morning, the 31-year-old former Dallas police officer was the first person her attorneys called to the stand in her own defense, WFAA reported.

“I feel like a piece of crap,” Guyger told the jury. “I hate that I have to live with this every single day, and I ask God for forgiveness and hate myself every single day.”

The 911 call that Guyger made to police after she shot 27-year-old Botham Jean was played in the courtroom.

"I thought it was my apartment. I thought it was my apartment," she repeated countless times to the 911 operator. "I didn't mean to. I didn't mean to. I’m so sorry.”

"I shot an innocent man who didn't deserve it,” Guyger told the operator.

The former police officer sobbed in the courtroom as the recording of the 911 call was played, WFAA reported.

“I wish he was the one with the gun and had killed me,” Guyger testified. “I never wanted to take an innocent person’s life. And I am so sorry.”

Prosecutors who cross-examined Guyger accused her of failing to render aid to the man he had shot because she was more worried about herself than her victim, WFAA reported.

Earlier in the week, evidence was presented that showed then-Officer Guyger had texted her police partner boyfriend after she called 911.

Jason Hermus, a prosecutor, grilled the former police officer about why she had failed to stay inside the apartment and perform CPR on the man she had just shot.

“I wanted somebody there fast to give him help," Guyger explained.

She said she went out into the hallway to confirm the address and summon help, WFAA reported.

"You knew how to do CPR properly?" Hermus asked.

"I've never done it on a person," Guyger replied.

Hermus confirmed that she had been trained by the police department to properly perform CPR, WFAA reported.

"Did you properly perform CPR on Mr. Jean?" Hermus asked.

"No, I did not," Guyger replied.

"But you could have, right?" the prosecutor asked.

"I tried to do a little CPR," she said.

“Why would you try to do 'a little CPR' on a man who is dying and needs your full attention?" Hermus hammered back.

The prosecutor also wanted to know why Guyger hadn’t used any of the medical supplies she had in her backpack, WFAA reported.

"Is there a reason why you didn't use this stuff right here, which is designed to control traumatic bleeding?" Hermus asked and pulled out the contents of the first aid kit to show the jury.

"It never crossed my mind," she admitted.

Guyger admitted on cross-examination that she had intended to kill Jean when she shot him because she had perceived him as a threat, WFAA reported.

On Saturday morning, the lead investigator on the case, Texas Ranger David Armstrong, testified about how stress can affect the senses when an officer confronts a suspect, The Dallas Morning News reported.

"Some of the physical sensations ... would be auditory exclusion, which basically means that you may not hear at the normal volume that you normally would because you’re under stress," Ranger Armstrong told the jury.

He also said a person in that situation might experience an elevated heart rate, tunnel vision, and short-term memory loss, according to The Dallas Morning News.

Retired Dallas Police Deputy Chief Craig Miller was also scheduled to testify as an expert witness on Saturday but the judge ruled that the retired law enforcement officer could not tell jurors his opinion that Guyger’s reactions had been “reasonable” when she opened fire on Jean.

Ranger Armstrong opined the same thing in court when he was called as a witness earlier in the week but that also was not in front of the jury, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Several other residents of the Southside Flats apartment building were called to the stand on Friday and testified that on multiple occasions, they had also parked on the wrong floor of the parking garage and gone to the wrong door on the wrong floor in search of their own apartments as Guyger testified that she had done on the night she killed her upstairs neighbor.

Officer Guyger was initially arrested on a manslaughter charge on Sept. 9, three days after she fatally shot Jean in his apartment.

A grand jury later indicted her for murder. A murder conviction could put Guyger behind bars for life, whereas manslaughter would have carried a maximum penalty of 20 years, the Dallas Morning News reported.

After having worked 14 hours serving warrants in high crime areas of the city, the exhausted officer parked on the wrong floor of the parking garage adjacent to her apartment building, WCAU reported.

The arrest affidavit said the garage levels correspond with the floors in the apartment complex. Officer Guyger lives on the 3rd Floor of the Southside Flats apartment complex, and should have parked on the 3rd floor where her apartment was.

But the off-duty officer parked on the 4th floor of the parking garage and proceeded into the building, where she went to the door of the apartment she believed to be her own and used her key.

The door wasn’t fully shut and opened right away.

The sound of the door opening alerted Jean, who was home alone in his apartment watching football.

The affidavit said Jean went to see what was going on at his front door.

Officer Guyger told investigators she saw the silhouette of someone in what she believed to be her own apartment, and drew her firearm, WCAU reported. The affidavit said she believed she was being robbed.

She gave verbal commands that were ignored by Jean, according to the affidavit. Then she fired her weapon in the dark at the person twice, striking him once.

The arrest affidavit said it wasn’t until Officer Guyger was already on the phone with 911, that she reached to turn on the lights and she realized she was not in her own apartment.

She went into the hall and checked the address on the door and confirmed for the dispatchers that she was in unit 1478, one floor above her own apartment, WCAU reported.

Jean was transported to Baylor Medical Center in Dallas where he later died.

Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall announced that Guyger had been fired from the police force on Sept. 24, but not for the shooting.

Comments (87)
No. 1-19
LEO0301
LEO0301

It's not murder. If anything, they should be looking at manslaughter at the most. Anyone in law enforcement who has worked extended periods of time working knows that after 15 hours you're not functioning like you should.

Hi_estComnDenomn
Hi_estComnDenomn

everyone in the Navy knows that 12 - 16 hour days during deployment is normal, and if you accidentally shoot a noncombatant, you better get your Dress uniform ready for Captain's Mast.

dcoskrey
dcoskrey

For the life of me I don't get what the prosecutor hopes to prove with questions like why didn't you perform CPR, why didn't you use the first aid stuff in your backpack, etc. Are they trying to say she assassinated him? Or hated him? Or wanted him to die? Or she's a shitty person? Or a shitty cop? Other articles talk about the red doormat, the open air parking, the décor on the wall, etc. In a post above @tfort says that plenty of people work more than 14 hours and don't kill people. True. But in asking those questions, and making those points, I just don't understand WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY??? I mean, aren't the facts pretty clear, no matter which side you are on? She worked a long day, parked on the wrong floor, went to the wrong door, opened the wrong door, saw a dude in what she thought was her apartment, and shot him dead. A horrible, tragic mistake. The worst day of her life. She is not innocent … she did it. She was negligent, no question. The question just becomes what the consequences should be for her mistake.

bryantrent
bryantrent

She is guilty anyway

TexasStrong
TexasStrong

I've been watching this since she killed Mr. Jean. I watched her testimony on Friday. She would screw up her face to appear to cry but I never saw a tear fall from her eyes. I don't think she went home planning on killing this man but she is guilty of negligent homicide. She should be punished. This man's family deserves some justice for his death.

Jbkerner
Jbkerner

This whole story is confusing! The article says she was fired from her job, but not because of the shooting. Then what for? And why is she being tried for murder? Manslaughter seems like a more appropriate charge. From what I've read, she's guilty of manslaughter, not murder; a terrible accident, caused by a series of mistakes, brought on by fatigue.

Gman130
Gman130

I worked 2-12 hour day shifts from 0600-1800, and then night shifts from 1800 to 0600. 4- 12 shifts. 2-dayshift and 2- graveyards, all in four days. I never knew if I was coming or going. I saw numerous people go through divorces, alcoholism, speed, Pain pills, Ppl, fired etc. A police officer should never work longer than a 10 hour shift. Had Amber, attended to the victim and performed CPR at least fake it, if she was worried when the officers, showed up it would’ve really made her look a heck of a lot better instead of worrying about herself and her career that’s the mistake she made. IMO. that will hurt her the most. Also this type of work is not like the Navy unless you’re in combat in the Navy of coarse being a first responder is a lot different than having a normal job you are worn out like no other dealing with human beings is the hardest job in the world trying to solve their problems. Specially nowadays.

lccooper
lccooper

As a retired LEO,I can see the mistakes that were made by the officer . But,there is also a suspicion that the victim was,to a degree,responsible for the tragic outcome. There is a presumption of safety,security nd privacy in your domicile,HOWEVER,there is a reasonable assumption that some steps must be taken in order to reasonably expect those. "safe haven" expectations. Primarily and foremost is the obligation that you limit access to your premises in order to control,and/or deny unauthorised or unexpected entry.The failure,intentional or not, to close the entrance door was in itself the sole factor that granted mistaken unauthorised entry by the officer.Had the door been closed Approiately access would have been denied to the officer.This is a terrible tragedy that has claimed more victims than we realize.That lack of a reasonable ,common effort to control access to the venue was the single act,that if effected,would have guaranteed the reasonable expectations aforementioned.Negligence on the party of one,a mistake on the party of the other.I see no criminal intent by any party,to this tragedy.

Gman130
Gman130

Prison is not the answer!!!!!

Rottweilerowner7
Rottweilerowner7

Just by reading this over half of this is a mess. As a former LEO working very long hours engaging in things such as serving warrants, dealing with public etc can cause an officer to have stress at the end of the day. Now Officer Guyger didn’t realize she was on the wrong floor-simple mistake. Now the door she “opened” just happened to be slightly ajar as well. At this point she should’ve called 911 or radioed if she was in uniform still and got a backup officer. Every time we had a call like that two units went not one-safety first. This would’ve cause the guy to turn the lights on and the mistakes would’ve been found, and everything would’ve been clear today. So personally no murder charge, she wasn’t going there to “murder him”. However I could see a manslaughter charge being stuck here. As for a sentence?? That’s a different story.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Glad her tox reports ended up negative.

Marxest
Marxest

There we have it! The pale she-devil admitted that she intended to kill him. That was some testimony that she gave - she should get an Oscar! Contorting her face and whining but not shedding a single tear, why should she? She isn't at all sorry that she murdered a innocent man, she's upset that she lost her job and is on trial. She said that during the 911 call. Then to hear that shifty retired chief and that slimy alleged Texas Ranger try to justify her murderous actions as "reasonable". That's exactly what the defense wants: a murder committed by an officer to be "reasonable". I guess they are helping her because she is the right color and Mr Botham Jean (rest in peace- your life was good and your life mattered) was the opposite color that attracts bullets. Guyger's and her defense teams whole behavior has been absolutely vomit inducing. I hope justice is done.

Popcop.M1
Popcop.M1

It's not murder, it's Capital Stupidity. Lock her up and throw away the key on her stupid ass. She took a life for being a complete dumb ass. If it were the other way around, the occupant shooting and killing her, they would have hung him out to dry.

Spikester
Spikester

She’s responsible either way. That man is dead. She killed him. All he did was forget to close his door all the way. Perhaps he was tired too. He should be safe in his own apartment . That man did nothing to deserve being shot and killed. She did not even attempt to help him after she realized what she had done. Therefore she let him die. That family deserves justice.

PositiveThoughts
PositiveThoughts

I feel like a piece of crap,” Guyger told the jury. “I hate that I have to live with this every single day.... WTH she gets to live and she's complaining???? One of the first things she did was call her union rep. She's right, she is a piece of crap and needs to pay the price for murder.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

I think she she get the same charge / conviction as a civilian in similar circumstances. And I think down in Texas, that charge would be murder.

Gretagarbo
Gretagarbo

She wasn’t too tired to sext her cop boyfriend and talk dirty. She was texting him on the way from the garage and probably before that. When I’m exhausted from work I don’t think I’d be doing that. I’d at least wait till I was sitting in my apartment. Distraction is the name of her game. He had a bright red doormat outside so his friends could easily pick out his apartment. You guys are making too many excuses for someone like her. She’s an irresponsible person. Not murder but she should definitely get jail time. Especially since she again texted her boyfriend instead of administering CPR. Isn’t that why they teach it in the academy for God’s sake? She needs to get a job that requires no thinking. Then she can text and sext all she wants. She’s a poor excuse for law enforcement.

George P
George P

Prayers for the soul of the victim, his family and friends. But am quite curious how this Judge came to rule that experts could not testify. DRat perhaps?