Oct 14, 2019

Fort Worth officer responsible for Atatiana Jefferson shooting resigns

Fort Worth police officer Aaron Dean, who shot and killed Atatiana Jefferson, a 28-year-old black woman, in her own home on Saturday morning, resigned Monday just hours before Interim Police Chief Ed Kraus planned to terminate his employment, NBC reports.

Background: Dean had been responding to a neighbor's call that stated Jefferson's front door was ajar. Jefferson was inside playing video games with her 8-year-old nephew when 2 officers went into her backyard. Body camera footage shows Dean shouted at Jefferson through a window to put her hands up without identifying himself as an officer. He proceeded to open fire through the window, killing Jefferson in one shot.

  • At the time, the Fort Worth Police Department said that "officers saw someone near a window inside the home and that one of them drew his duty weapon and fired after 'perceiving a threat,'" per AP.
  • The Jefferson family is demanding an outside investigation into her death and had been calling for Dean's termination.
  • Dean had already been placed on administrative leave.

Between the lines: The shooting came just a short time after the sentencing of Amber Guyger, an off-duty police officer who fatally shot Botham Jean, an unarmed black man, when she entered his apartment that she believed was her own.

  • The Guyger case has reinvigorated the debate over intrinsic bias and dynamics between police and unarmed black individuals, brought to national prominence by the Black Lives Matter movement.

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