Authorities have said Guyger was still in uniform when she mistakenly entered Jean’s apartment, thinking it was her own. She then encountered and shot Jean, telling authorities she thought he was an intruder, an account Jean’s relatives have questioned.
A grand jury indicted her last year on a murder charge, something Guyger’s attorney attributed at the time to the political pressure of the moment. Her legal team also unsuccessfully sought to have the trial, which is set to begin Monday, moved out of Dallas County.
An attorney for Guyger did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.
Prosecutors and defense attorneys are under a gag order prohibiting them from speaking to the media about the case, according to the Dallas Morning News, but the newspaper reported that before that order was issued, an attorney for Guyger said the shooting was “a tragic mistake” rather than murder.
The shooting came amid an increased nationwide focus on how law enforcement officers use force. Jean was one of 992 people fatally shot by police officers in 2018, according to The Washington Post’s database tracking these deaths.
Jean’s family has also filed a federal lawsuit, arguing that Guyger used excessive force and violated Jean’s civil rights during the shooting.
In their federal complaint, Jean’s family described him as an ambitious and active member of his community, saying he was on track to become a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, the accounting firm where he worked, and was a worship leader in his church.
“Jean had an enthusiasm for life that was contagious,” the complaint said.
A magistrate judge agreed to stay that lawsuit until the criminal case concludes. An attorney for Guyger had argued that there were “overlapping issues between” the criminal and civil cases.