(CNN)A police officer who claimed she killed a Dallas man in his own apartment in the mistaken belief that he was in her home was indicted Friday on a murder charge, authorities said.
The indictment of Amber Guyger comes more than two months after she was arrested in the shooting death of Botham Shem Jean at the Dallas apartment complex where both lived — a killing that sparked days of protests.
Guyger was arrested after the September shooting and charged with manslaughter by the Texas Rangers, the lead investigative agency, Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson said at a news conference.
When asked why the grand jury indicted Guyger on the more serious offense of murder, Johnson replied, “We presented the evidence and we explained the law.”
ohnson said murder constitutes someone “intentionally and knowingly” committing a crime, whereas manslaughter involves “recklessly doing something.”
“At the moment of the shooting it was a knowing … offense,” Johnson said.
The court records Friday showed both a manslaughter and murder charge entered in Guyger’s file, but a clerk of court clerk confirmed that the murder charge is the one prosecutors are moving forward on.
Robert Rogers, Guyger’s attorney, was disappointed but not surprised by the indictment, given what he called an “outpouring of vindictive emotion” in a statement late Friday.
“This is a terrible tragedy that resulted from a true mistake,” he said. “We are confident that a dispassionate jury in a fair forum will objectively apply the law to the facts and find Amber not guilty.”
Guyger had already been arrested again and released on bond, Johnson said at the news conference.
‘He didn’t deserve it,” Jean’s mother says
Botham Jean’s mother, Allison Jean, said during a news conference that she’s satisfied with the murder indictment.
Guyger “inflicted tremendous evil on my son,” Allison Jean said. “He didn’t deserve it.
He was seated in his own apartment. He felt safe and he was violated by her coming in and murdering him,” she said.
Allison said she hopes a proper penalty will cause Guyger to reflect on what she has allegedly done and the pain she has caused.
Family attorney S. Lee Merritt said the grand jury decision is “groundbreaking, but it is also just a start.”