FORT WORTH, Texas (NBC News) – A Texas police officer who shot and killed a woman inside her own home over the weekend has been charged with murder.
Aaron Dean’s arrest came Monday evening, hours after he resigned from the Fort Worth Police Department.
“Had the officer not resigned, I would have fired him for violations of several polices including our use of force policy, our deescalation policy and unprofessional conduct,” interim Police Chief Ed Kraus said shortly before Dean’s arrest.
The shooting happened early Saturday morning when a concerned neighbor called a police non-emergency number to ask for a wellness check on his neighbor after he noticed her front door was left open.
Footage from Dean’s body camera shows him approaching a window and firing a shot almost immediately after spotting someone inside the home, never identifying himself as a police officer.
The victim, 28-year-old Atatiana Jefferson, was babysitting her 8-year-old nephew at the time.
Her nephew told investigators he and his aunt were playing video games when Jefferson said she “heard noises coming from outside,” took her handgun from her purse, raised it and pointed it toward the window and was then shot and fell to the ground.
“It makes sense that she would have a gun if she felt she was being threatened or there was someone in the backyard,” Chief Kraus said.
Dean posted bond Tuesday.
Jefferson’s family says blame for her death extends beyond the officer who pulled the trigger.
“The system failed him. The senior that was with him, that was out with him, failed him. Whoever sent him out failed him. The training failed him. There is a lot that has to get fixed. The city failed him,” said Adarius Carr, Jefferson’s brother.
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