Justice Served

Texas cop who shot Black woman through her bedroom window is sentenced to over a decade in prison

A former Fort Worth police officer was sentenced to over a decade in prison on Tuesday for shooting a woman through her bedroom window, KERA News reports.

Aaron Dean shot Atatiana Jefferson through her bedroom window while responding to a call about open doors at her home. He was sentenced to 11 years, 10 months and 12 days in prison. Dean is white, and Jefferson was Black and her case is often brought cited by civil rights activists as another example of racist police violence.

Dean was convicted of manslaughter on Thursday. He was originally charged with murder.

Dean claimed he thought Jefferson’s house was being burglarized, and when he and his partner went into Jefferson’s backyard, he saw Jefferson holding a gun through the window and he shot her in self-defense. But the prosecution argued there’s no evidence Dean saw a gun and Jefferson had every right to pick up a gun for self-defense. Before the shooting, Jefferson was up late playing video games with her 8-year-old nephew.

“This verdict and sentence won’t bring Atatiana Jefferson back,” Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney Sharen Wilson said in a statement. “This trial was difficult for all involved, including our community. My sympathies remain with Atatiana’s family and friends, and I pray they find peace.

Wilson went on to say that the trial was not about politics or race.

“If someone breaks the law, they have to be held accountable. The jury agreed. We thank the jury members for making sure justice was served,” Wilson said.

After the sentence was delivered, Jefferson’s family members took the stand to address Dean.

“I have loathed the idea of you with your family during the holiday seasons for the last three years. Today, I have just arrived at pity,” said Jefferson’s sister Ashley Carr. “I pity you for your ignorance. You do not know enough to be ashamed.”

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