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Atatiana Jefferson Was Playing Video Games When A White Police Officer Shot And Killed Her



Joyce Marshall/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

UPDATE: (10/15/19, 10:17 p.m. ET): The white former Fort Worth police officer who shot Atatiana Jefferson, Aaron Dean, resigned before he could be fired on Monday (October 14), a local Fort Worth CBS News station reported. He was arrested and charged with murder on Monday and was released on $200,000 bond.

Jefferson was playing video games in her bedroom with her 8-year-old nephew when Dean shot and killed her from outside her window in the early hours of October 12 in Fort Worth, Texas.

The officer was responding to a call reporting that the front door of Jefferson’s house was open. The responding officers surveyed the area, opened the backyard gate, and noticed that someone was standing inside the house near a window, according to the Fort Worth Police Department. As body camera footage showed, one officer yelled, “Put your hands up, show me your hands;” he then shot through the window and killed the 28-year-old before he finished asking to see her hands. He did not tell the woman, who turned out to be Jefferson, that he was law enforcement before giving her orders or shooting her.

Dean, whose identity was not immediately released by the Fort Worth Police Department, had been with the department for a year and a half at the time of the killing. He was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of a police investigation, according to the police department. The Fort Worth Police major case unit, the internal affairs unit, and the Tarrant County criminal district attorney’s law enforcement incident team are all involved in the investigation. Police overturned body camera footage and other evidence from the scene to the Tarrant County district attorney’s office, which will decide whether or not to prosecute the officer who shot Jefferson.

Lee Merritt, a prominent civil rights attorney in the Dallas area who told the Washington Post that he is representing Jefferson’s family, said in a Facebook post that

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