Legal expert: Arrest affidavit in Botham Jean shooting is not typical
An attorney not involved in the Botham Jean shooting case says the arrest affidavit for Dallas Officer Amber Guyger is not your typical one.
A probable cause affidavit for arrest, or a PCA, is a sworn statement typically made by a police officer that outlines the factual justification for why a judge should consent to an arrest.
“The nature of a probable cause affidavit is accusatory,” said attorney Geoff Henley, who is not involved in the case.
But Henley says the probable cause affidavit for Guyger is starkly different. The off-duty officer who shot and killed Jean thought she was at her apartment encountering a burglar when in reality she was at his apartment. Henley says the affidavit of arrest reads more like an exonerating document.
“I mean it lays out in everything that we know of to date that’s exculpatory for her,” the attorney said. “The units were identical. He ignored her commands. That’s not the way most charging instruments read.”
The information in the arrest affidavit presented as facts in the case come through a Texas Ranger from an interview either he or a colleague conducted with Guyger Friday evening after the shooting. The Texas Ranger says Guyger parked on the fourth floor thinking it was the third, which is her floor. She went to Jean's apartment directly above hers, inserted a unique door key with an electronic chip into the door key hole. She claimed the door was slightly ajar. She saw a large silhouette moving in the apartment and drew her firearm, gave verbal commands that were ignored and fired her handgun two times.
Henley is suspicious of the narrative's account even though it led to her arrest.
“What makes far more sense? That a person would have left his door open on top of all these other staggering coincidences? That she parked on the wrong floor? That she walked down the wrong hall? She entered the wrong door?” Henley said. “No, it seems far too convenient.”
Henley says like the case itself, the arrest affidavit is not the norm.
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