Dallas Youth Pastor Mistakenly Killed by Off-Duty Police Officer
Kayla KosloskyReligious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2018 Sep 11
EDITOR'S NOTE, Monday, September 24, 1:49 p.m. EDT: The Dallas Police Department has released a statement announcing the termination of Office Amber Guyger from her position as a Dallas Police officer. According to the statement, Guyger was relieved of her duties because she "engaged in adverse conduct when she was arrested for Manslaughter." Guyger's termination comes after weeks of protests from the public including demands from Jean's family and church community.
On Thursday the youth Pastor of Dallas West Church of Christ was shot and killed by a police officer in his own home.
Botham Jean was shot Thursday by an off-duty Dallas police officer who reportedly mistook Jean’s apartment for her own.
According to CBN, investigators are saying that Officer Amber Guyger was returning home from a shift when she entered Jean's apartment and opened fire thinking Jean was an intruder.
Jean's family’s lawyer is calling for Guyger's arrest and has spoken out against the fact that days after the shooting Guyer remained free. Reportedly, the family’s lawyer is proclaiming that the officer is receiving favorable treatment. Guyger was arrested on Sunday and is out on bond.
Police are still investigating the shooting.
On Sunday at Dallas West Church of Christ, the family and church congregation held a service to honor the life of Jean.
According to The Dallas Morning News, Jean moved to Dallas after graduating from Harding University in Arkansas.
While attending university, Jean was reportedly known for his “beautiful voice,” and often led worship at the university chapel.
Jean would go on to serve as a youth pastor and worship leader in Dallas.
CBN reports that during the service on Sunday, family and friends paid tribute to Jean by singing "My God is Real,” one of Jean’s favorite hymns.
Church member Jessica Berry told CNN, "I'm feeling numb. I have anger right now. I'm frustrated, just knowing who he is. The way he died is not fair."
Minister Sammie Berry said, "Bo's" death is a painful loss to his church family."
The Minister continued, "Bo was an outstanding young man. He was an outstanding Christian. He was having an impact. We're definitely going to miss him. I don't think you could find a better person when you look at the life he lived, the contributions he made, the passion that he had for the church and anything that he did. He always wanted to do his very best."
Jean's girlfriend, Cynthia Johnson said at the service on Sunday, "Pray for me that I find peace, acceptance, and healing in Christ our Lord."
The members of Jean’s church among others are praying for justice for the youth pastor’s death.
"The events of the past week, they've changed me, they've transformed me," said Berry. "But we ought to be like Bo this morning...He understood his purpose."
Photo courtesy: Unsplash/Benton Witcher