Former Fort Worth Police Officer Aaron Dean shot and killed Atatiana Jefferson on Oct. 12, 2019. Not only did it take him nearly three days to be arrested, even when he was allegedly not cooperating with police, he is now reportedly refusing to even talk to investigators.
CNN reports, “Dean has declined to speak with investigators since Saturday, the warrant states. He first refused to be interviewed by the detectives in the immediate aftermath of the shooting, and his attorneys told police that he was going to provide a written statement at a later date, according to the document.”
CNN explained officers usually “give an oral or written statement about what happened for an internal investigation, either immediately after the shooting or within 72 hours.” As of yesterday, Interim Police Chief Ed Kraus confirmed that Dean has not been cooperating and stated, “I cannot tell you what he felt. He did not give a statement.”
Even before he was arrested, Kraus revealed that Dean was not being cooperative with police and said during the press conference that Dean “resigned before his opportunity to cooperate.” Kraus said he planned to fire Dean before finding out he quit. It was unclear why Krause did not fire him on Saturday or Sunday. Dean was apparently never even interviewed about the shooting before being placed on paid administrative leave.
Dean was in custody for less than four hours. The Associated Press reported, “Jail records show Aaron Dean, 34, was out of custody after posting bond Monday night, less than four hours after his arrest in a shooting that began with a call about an open front door. He had been held on $200,000 bond. Earlier in the day he resigned from the force, and the police chief said he would have been fired if he hadn’t.”
Dean has been charged with murder, see the mugshot below.
On early Saturday morning, an officer responded because a concerned neighbor requested a wellness check. Jefferson died about 2:30 a.m. local time after the officer killed her in her own home by shooting his gun through a window. Jefferson was reportedly playing video games with her nephew. Jefferson was reportedly shot within four seconds of the officer arriving.
In a subsequent press release announcing the shooting, Fort Worth police claimed the officer was “Perceiving a threat” at the time. The press release also said that officers saw “a firearm” when they entered Jefferson’s home and found her. The Fort Worth Police Department then reportedly released an image of that firearm, even though there was no claim of that gun being used or even wielded during the one-sided encounter. Texas is a state with laws that permit citizens to openly carry guns.
According to local news outlet WFAA, police held a press conference Sunday and offered no explanation for why they “released images of a gun in Jefferson’s bedroom, what those images were intended to convey, or what may have prompted the officer to fire his weapon.”
Attorney for the Jefferson family Lee Merritt started a GoFundMe page to help pay for the 28-year-old’s funeral and related costs. According to her Facebook and LinkedIn pages, she worked at and attended the historically Black college Xavier University of Louisiana.
Sounds like Dean is already using his privilege as much as possible to avoid justice.