Jury Selection Begins For Officer Charged In Death Of Atatiana Jefferson

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Jury selection has begun for a former Texas officer accused of fatally shooting a Black woman through a window of her own home.

Monday (November 28) marked the start of the murder trial for ex-Fort Worth police officer Aaron Dean, who is charged with shooting and killing Atatiana Jefferson in 2019, WFIN reports.

Jefferson died on October 12, 2019, after a neighbor called police to report that her front door was open. She was watching her nephew when Dean approached the door of the home, according to body camera footage.

Video shows Dean walking around to the side of the home and pushing through a gate to enter the fenced-off backyard. He shouted at Jefferson to show her hands just before opening fire through a glass window.

Dean doesn't appear to identify himself as a police officer, per the body camera footage.

After Dean was charged with Jefferson's killing, he resigned from the police department.

The beginning of his trial comes years later due to delays including the COVID-19 pandemic and the declining health of Dean’s former lead attorney Jim Lane, who died on Sunday (November 27) according to the Fort Worth Police Officers Association.

On Monday, District Judge George Gallagher started proceedings by acknowledging that the case has received significant media coverage. He asked potential jurors if they had seen or read anything about the fatal police shooting.

Gallager said he hopes to have a jury of 12 and two alternates in place by Friday (December 2).

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