A black woman was fatally shot dead in her home on Saturday after a white policeman from Fort Worth, Texas, shot into a bedroom window while conducting a social check-up at her residence. The shootout has sparked outrage and calls for police accountability in a community whose confidence in prosecution has already been shaken by other shootings and the death of Botham Jean in nearby Dallas. 28-year-old Atatiana Koquice's neighbor Jefferson called a non- Emergency Hotline and said he was worried about an open door in the woman's apartment and wanted to make sure she was fine. According to Fort Worth police officials approached home at around 2:25 am to answer a "call for open structure" and, after seeing the open door, went around Perimeter around the residence.
The department said the officers saw a person standing near a window. "When the officer saw a threat, he pulled his service weapon and fired a shot that hit the person in the residence," the police said.
This person was Jefferson, who was shot in the bedroom. After the release, the police entered the house and began to provide emergency relief, but the woman was declared dead at the scene.
On Saturday, the department released body-shot of the shootout that showed what happened outside of Jefferson's house and the apartment itself, which had a door open and the lights inside. The video shows two policemen running around outside Jefferson's house and looking in screen doors before going into the backyard. One of the officers goes to a closed window on the first floor and quickly lights a flashlight on it before pulling his weapon.
Then he screams: "Raise your hands! Show me your hands! "Before you fire a shot less than a second later. At no point in the published video do men clearly identify themselves as police officers.
In addition to the body camera statement and video, the police also released edited footage of firearms officers they found at the residence, but with no additional information about where Jefferson was in relation to or whether the gun was always visible to the officers. Texas is an open-carry state and citizens are allowed to own and carry firearms with few restrictions.
The policeman who shot Jefferson was not named in the weekend police statement, but identified as Aaron Dean on Monday, on the same day he left the division. Dean, who was hired in August 2017 and became an officer nearly a year later in April 2018, is currently not cooperating with the shooting investigation and has not answered any questions from investigators, said Fort Worth police chief Ed Kraus to the reporters on Monday with.
Kraus also said he had asked the FBI to investigate the shootings for possible civil rights violations, and added that Dean was dismissed by the police on Monday for failing to comply with their use of violence and de-escalation policies. Dean could continue to be prosecuted. The police have already announced that they will submit the footage and other evidence to Tarrant District Attorney at the end of the investigation.
"None of this information can ease the pain of Atatiana's family, but I hope they show the community that we are serious about these incidents," Kraus told reporters.
Meanwhile, Jefferson's family has called for an independent investigation into the shootings, stating that they want justice through an "independent, thorough and transparent process."
The shootout devastated the black inhabitants of Fort Worth
] Jefferson's execution, according to the Fort Worth Star telegram, the seventh local police shoot-out, involving a civilian since June 1, has blacks Residents of the region left angry and confused. Community members say the shooting proves that they can not ask the police for help.
"The Fort Worth police have murdered this woman. They murdered this woman in their own house, "said Rev. Michael Bell, a local pastor who joined a group of church leaders for a press conference on Saturday. "And now, African American, we have no recourse. When we call the police, they come and kill us. And we know that.
Similar concerns were voiced by Jefferson's neighbor, James Smith, who called the police after noticing the open door and lights in their home and said he was worried about Jefferson and her eight-year-old nephew, who also lived in the residence. I'm upset, I'm upset, I'm upset and I think it's partly my fault, "he told the Fort Worth Star Telegram on Saturday," If I'd never called the police, it would still be alive . "
When Smith was called by the police on Sunday, the man was told to tell a police officer that the doors of the house were open since Friday 10 pm and that he was worried because he saw no movement in the house.
19659016] "I do not know what was going on in the house, but I know it was not a threat," Smith later told reporters. Biologin, a 2014 graduate of Xavier University, quickly compared the shooting of Botham Jean in 2018 A 26-year-old black man fatally shot dead by former Dallas duty officer Amber Guyger while eating ice cream in his home.
Lee Merritt, a local civil rights lawyer who owns Jean's family was also retained by Jefferson's family members. He said the weekend shooting was another example of blacks being unable to live safely in their own homes.
"You did not hear the policeman say" weapon, weapon, weapon "," you did not hear him – he did not have time to perceive a threat, "Merritt told reporters on Saturday. "That's murder."
"We expect a thorough and appropriate investigation," he added. A GoFundMe created by Merritt on behalf of Jefferson's family was released Sunday and raised more than $ 170,000 on Monday afternoon.
Prior to filming, Merritt said Jefferson, known as "Tay" by her loved ones, had played video games with her nephew. The boy was with her in the bedroom when the shots fell, and lived in the houses when Jefferson, a seller of pharmaceutical equipment, helped look after the house while her mother was in the hospital.
Merritt says when she went to the bedroom window on Saturday morning, Jefferson was worried after hearing the noise outside adding that she was probably worried that a wanderer or burglar might be outside.
"Law enforcement did not say that she wore a gun," Merritt told The New York Times. "It would not matter, because here she is at home."
When Merritt spoke to CNN on Sunday, he said that Jefferson's family spoke to the local police, but that they wanted an independent agency to investigate the shootings. "We do not think the Fort Worth police should investigate that on their own," he said.
The police department has offered limited updates, but promises a "
On Sunday, the Fort Worth Police Department held a brief press conference to discuss the shooting, but provided little new information about what was happening in the early hours of the morning October 12th.
The agency largely adhered to a prepared statement and shared the "very real and legitimate concerns" of Jefferson's residents and family.
"The tragic loss of life has great consequences for everyone involved, especially for the family of Mrs. Atatiana Jefferson. We communicated with the family and shared our sincere and heartfelt concern for this indescribable loss, "said Fort Worth Police Lt. Brandon O'Neill.
The department did not answer questions about why they were giving out information about a gun at Jefferson's home and also refused to answer questions about the exact nature of the "threat" the officer perceived.
The department, however, acknowledged some earlier statements by Merritt and Smith stating that Jefferson's nephew was in the room with her at the time of the shootout and that the police officer who shot the woman had previously failed to identify himself as a law enforcement officer ,
"What the police officer observed and why he did not announce" police "will be addressed later in the investigation," O Neil told reporters.
On Monday, Police Chief Kraus announced Dean's resignation, saying he regretted that the department shared pictures of the gun in Jefferson's house and said that she had every right to possess her.
"We are homeowners in the state of Texas," he said. "I can not imagine that most of us – if we thought we had someone outside our home who was not supposed to be, and we had access to a firearm – would not act as they did."
Department said there will be additional updates on the investigation on October 15.
Jefferson's death has garnered national attention – and comparisons with the death of Botham Jean in 2018
Message of Jefferson's death, who comes to Guyger less than two weeks, was convicted of murdering Jean and sentenced to 10 years imprisonment Police in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are already paying close attention.
In recent months, residents of Dallas have voiced several concerns regarding the Dallas Police Department. This has only been reinforced by evidence raised during the trial of Guyger and the death of Joshua Brown on October 4, a black man last month testified against Guyger. The Dallas Police Department has condemned speculation that its officials were somehow associated with Brown's death.
According to Washington Post's Fatal Force database, Jefferson is one of at least 689 people killed by the police since the beginning of 2019. Four of these women were black.
On Saturday, members of Jefferson's family told reporters it was "unimaginable and confusing" that the woman in her home was shot dead by the police. "It's another situation where the people who are supposed to protect us are not actually here to protect us," said Amber Carr, Jefferson's older sister, to NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, adding that she was worried about Officials Training
Sunday night saw further concerns over the shootings as hundreds of people gathered for a rally and vigil on the same street as Jefferson's House. "Systemic oppression has created the risk of blacks being killed," one participant, Michelle Anderson, told local reporters. "We speak of state-sanctioned violence – it has always been a culture for black people. No, it's not about training. "
Similar concerns were also voiced by national politicians, including several Democratic presidential candidates who shared Jefferson's story over the weekend on social media.
"Being black in your own home should not be a death sentence," tweeted Sen. Kamala Harris on October 13 . Sen. Elizabeth Warren said the shootings have shown the urgency of needing police reform and "federal standards for the use of force". Meanwhile Senator Bernie Sanders demanded an investigation of the covenant to the shots. Texas' former Congressman Beto O Rourke also spoke out in favor of recent high-level police firing in his home state, stating that people must "demand accountability and the promise to fight until no family returns." such tragedy ".
Jefferson's family and community say they intend to do just that and hold the shooting department accountable while the Fort Worth Police Department investigation continues shooting. "They want to see justice, but justice does not bring my sister back," Carr told reporters on Saturday, before bursting into tears.