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Ex-officer Amber Guyger responds to federal lawsuit filed by Botham Jean's family

The civil lawsuit was filed in October of 2018, following the fatal shooting of Botham Jean.
Credit: Texas Department of Criminal Justice
Amber Guyger begins 10-year prison sentence.

DALLAS — Fired Dallas police officer Amber Guyger has responded to allegations in a civil lawsuit filed by the family of Botham Jean for the first time since it was filed in October 2018.

Guyger is currently serving a 10-year prison sentence for the murder of Jean. Court proceedings regarding the federal lawsuit were put on hold until the murder trial was completed. 

Guyger's response comes a few weeks after a federal judge ruled that the City of Dallas was dismissed in the lawsuit over the death of Jean. 

Judge Barbara Lynn dismissed the wrongful death case with prejudice in December. The dismissal of the case against the City is because Jean's family failed to "state a claim," court records show. 

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the Jean family in October 2018. With this ruling, former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger is now the lone defendant in the wrongful death lawsuit. 

Jean's family claims Guyger used excessive force when she killed Jean. 

Though attorneys for Guyger had previously acknowledged the lawsuit and requested a stay until the end of the criminal proceeding, Guyger's answer filed Thursday is the first detailed response to Jean's family's claims. 

RELATED: Jean family files notice of appeal after judge dismisses City of Dallas from civil lawsuit

On Sept. 6, 2018, Guyger had just completed a nearly 14-hour work shift when she shot Jean inside his apartment

Guyger told investigators she thought the South Side Flats unit was her own. She was off duty but still in her police uniform at the time of the shooting. She was later fired from the Dallas Police Department. 

A year later, in October 2019, Guyger was found guilty of murder in Jean's death. 

Credit: WFAA
Botham Jean

The civil lawsuit states Guyger did not have proper training as a police officer and used excessive force in the deadly shooting of Jean. 

In May 2017, Guyger was involved in a non-fatal police shooting. She fired her weapon during a physical altercation with a drug offender. The man had taken her Taser.

"Defendant Guyger has been a police officer for less than five years yet the shooting of Jean represents the second suspicious shooting of an unarmed suspect of color," the lawsuit against her claims.  

"Upon information and belief, Defendant Guyger was not required to undergo any mental counseling and/or training after the first officer-involved shooting she was involved in," the lawsuit states.           

In the recent court documents filed, Guyger denied that either of the shootings were "suspicious."                         

The lawsuit also mentions that Guyger’s Pinterest account included photos that indicated that she was a dangerous person with "highly violence and anti-social propensities." 

RELATED: State reveals racist and violent texts, social media comments during Amber Guyger sentencing phase

The suit states Guyger violated the Police Department’s social media policies and never faced any reprimands for it. It also claims Guyger was given time to delete content from her social media accounts before her name was publicly released after the night she killed Jean. 

According to court documents, Guyger states she sometimes clicked "Like" on Pinterest posts and admitted she never was reprimanded for violating DPD’s social media guidelines. 

Guyger has requested a jury trial in the federal civil case. 

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