A court in Dallas, Texas, has sentenced white former police officer Amber Guyger to 10 years in prison for shooting and killing her upstairs neighbor Botham Jean, a 26-year-old black man, in his own home in 2018. In a remarkable scene following the sentencing, Botham Jean’s younger brother Brandt said during a victim’s impact statement that he forgave Guyger and wished she would not serve any time in prison.
Brandt Jean: “Again, I love you as a person, and I don’t wish anything bad on you. I don’t know if this is possible, but can I give her a hug, please? Please?”
Judge Tammy Kemp: “Yes.”
The pair then embraced for a minute. State District Judge Tammy Kemp later hugged Botham Jean’s family members before turning to Amber Guyger, handing her a Bible and embracing her, as well. Guyger will be eligible for parole in five years. Outside the courtroom, protesters condemned the sentence as too lenient, chanting “No justice, no peace.” Protesters later marched through the streets, blocking an intersection near the courthouse; one woman was tackled to the pavement and arrested by riot police.