On September 6, 30-year-old police officer Amber Guyger killed 26-year-old Botham Shem Jean in his own home. She was charged with manslaughter and there has been outrage over how District Attorney Faith Johnson, who is a Black, Republican woman, handled the case. On Tuesday, Johnson lost her reelection to retired judge John Creuzot, who is a Black Democrat, and he seems ready to do the job Johnson did not do.
District Attorney-elect Creuzot told NBC in Dallas, “I don’t know any police reports. I don’t know any forensic reports, but based on what I have seen, manslaughter is an inappropriate charge, based on the circumstances as I understand them. Once I get in there and I get everything in front of me and it appears the most appropriate charge is murder, then that’s the charge we will go forward with.” He also said, “anything less than murder deviates from Dallas County precedent.”
Back in early October, Faith Johnson, who had been dealing with backlash for months, said, “Only thing I’m saying to the people of Dallas County — trust me — we are planning to go before this grand jury, as soon as we can. In fact, we’re trying to expedite it to get it even quicker than we probably should, but we’re not going to compromise anything. That’s what is so critical, we don’t want to compromise any evidence that we think is going to be critical for them to make the right decision in the case.” Johnson lost to Creuzot by over 20 points.
There have been countless “mistakes” made in this case, from never searching Guyger’s apartment to claiming Botham Jean was a pothead to protesters in jail longer than Guyger was. Now with Creuzot in office, there will hopefully be less.