While Dallas cops were preparing as if Amber Guyger will be acquitted for killing Botham Jean, the shooting victim’s mother said she was “anxious” for the trial to begin. Many people have been anticipating the trial, but perhaps no one has been as eager for its start as much as Allison Jean.
She recently spoke to the Dallas Morning News from her native St. Lucia to discuss a number of topics, including her expectations for the trial and how she and her family have been holding up since Guyger illegally entered her son’s home, implausibly mistook him for a burglar and shot and killed him a year ago Friday.
Confirming that Botham Jean wanted to one day become the prime minister of St. Lucia, Allison Jean said her 26-year-old son was the glue that kept the family together. Without him has “just been terrible,” she said. “Even how though I want to try to dismiss it, put it behind me, try not to think about it, it is just very, very, very difficult living without Botham.”
Allison Jean said she was still in disbelief about Botham’s death, but especially the manner in which he was killed.
“I don’t know that anywhere in the world someone can walk into another person’s sanctuary and murder an unarmed person,” she said incredulously. “This is the last way that I believe Botham thought he would have died, and that’s the last way I thought he would have died because he never put himself in a situation where he could come into contact with people bearing guns and shooting and so on. Botham was not, never dabbled in anything that would ever cause that. So for it to happen to him, it is an injustice. It is wrong, and therefore, I just need the courts do what’s right.”
But when Allison Jean was asked what would constitute “justice” in the trial, she said she wasn’t holding her breath for it to be served.
“I have no control over it, so I’m not raising my expectations, but I just want to see that there is punishment, that there’s a conviction for murder, and the corresponding punishment that goes along with it,” she said. “That’s all I’m looking for.”
She also said that this would have been an open and shut case had Guyger not had the protection of the police, which afforded her a series of privileges that a typical murder suspect would not have normally received.
“[I]f she was just a common citizen, we wouldn’t even be talking today because that person would be in jail by now,” Allison Jean said about Guyger.
Previously, Allison Jean was much more outspoken about how she felt about Guyger and the way Dallas law enforcement was handling the case.
Back in February, she referred to Guyger as her “son’s murderer” and said that seeing images of Botham’s killer gave her “bouts of anger” that were keeping her emotional.
“He was not on the road. He was not walking. He wasn’t driving. He wasn’t running,” Allison Jean told Radio Caribbean International’s show “She Speaks” in an interview at the time. “Most of the other murders that you see in the United States you hear that they say ‘He had something that looked like a gun’ or ‘He had something that looked like a weapon.’ My son was just sitting on his couch waiting to watch a football match at 10 O’ clock and he did not see 10 O’ clock.”
She continued: “When I see – especially when I see her in videos walking like a human being and I don’t have my son that I could hug and I can be with … There are times before I go to bed that I just have to cry myself to sleep.”
In June, after Guyger’s 911 call following the shooting was published online, Allison Jean said she the audio was leaked to gain sympathy for her son’s killer. “Listening to it, it sparked some anger within me because I’m not hearing the dispatcher pay much attention to him,” she said at the time. “I didn’t hear the dispatcher ask about his condition, whether he was breathing, whether he was responsive…And I’m wondering whether it was because it was a police-involved shooting that the victim didn’t matter.”
One week after Botham was killed, Allison Jean called Guyger “the devil” in response to irrelevant reports her son had marijuana in his apartment.
“To have my son smeared in such a way, I think shows that the persons who are really nasty, who are really dirty and are going to cover up for the devil, Amber Guyger,” Allison Jean said during a press conference Sept. 15.
About 4,000 potential jurors have been summoned to participate in jury selection beginning Friday. District Judge Tammy Kemp, a Black woman, has delayed her ruling on a change of venue motion, writing in a separate ruling that she would only decide whether a new location was warranted once the process of questioning prospective jurors is “completed or it becomes apparent” during the interviews “that a fair and impartial jury cannot be selected in Dallas County due to the pervasive publicity in this case.”
On the night of Sept. 6, 2018, Guyger claimed that following a long day on the job as a Dallas police officer, she somehow mistook his apartment for her own and, after ordering Jean not to move, shot him twice before realizing the error of her ways. Her story was met with doubt because of a number of factors, including and especially her assertion that Jean’s door was ajar. Videos posted on social media by neighbors appeared to show that apartment doors in the building shut automatically after being released, an indication that Guyger might have lied about that.
In addition to inconsistencies in her alibis, which have changed several times, Dallas police, of which Guyger was a member for five years before being fired, appeared to be helping to cover up the shooting for their colleague. The department was accused of allowing Guyger enough time to scrub her social media accounts and get her story straight before turning herself in three days after killing Jean. It also gave Guyger enough time to move out of her apartment, which was never searched by police despite five warrants allowing them to do so.
The actual trial’s start date was scheduled for Sept. 23.
You can read the full interview with Allison Jean in the Dallas Morning News by clicking here.