DALLAS — Dallas police swiftly admitted that a white officer who shot a black man in his own apartment last week had made a mistake. They expressed contrition, turned the case over to independent investigators and reached out to the victim’s family.
That proactive approach appeared to tamp down anger in the community in the first few days after the killing on Sept. 6. There have been protests but not large-scale unrest since the death of Botham Jean, a native of the Caribbean island of St. Lucia who went to a Christian university in Arkansas and worked in Dallas for accounting firm PwC.
The killing by officer Amber Guyger — who told officers she believed the victim’s apartment was her own — could have led to an “explosive situation” on the streets, said Frederick Haynes, pastor of a Baptist church in Dallas and vice president of the African-American Pastors Coalition.
Haynes praised the actions of Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall, who has been in her job only a year.