The investigation into the death of Botham Jean has taken an odd turn as police acquired a search warrant for the victim’s home and released their findings. After it was reported that law enforcement officials found marijuana inside Jean’s unit, activists are calling out the police for attempting to criminalize and cast doubt on Jean’s victimhood.
Activist Shaun King, who was irate about the search of Jean’s home, called police to ask when the results of Amber Guyger’s home search will be made available. He was told there was no search of apartment belonging to the woman who killed a man in his own home.
Attorney Lee Merritt, who represents Jean’s family, criticized the police’s search warrant, which was obtained just hours following the shooting.
“They immediately began to smear him,” Merritt told The Associated Press.
According to a search warrant affidavit, obtained and released by NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, on Thursday, police seized two fired cartridge casings, one laptop, a ballistic police vest, a backpack with police equipment and paperwork, two radio frequency identification keys, 10.4 grams of marijuana (equal to less than half an ounce) and a marijuana grinder, and other items.
Attorney Benjamin Crump, who is also representing Jean’s family, told NBC DFW that Jean’s family does not know who the marijuana belongs to. Still, Crump maintained that the seized drugs were “nothing but a disgusting attempt to assassinate his character now that they have assassinated his person.”
David Menschel, an Oregon-based criminal defense attorney and activist, called the release of the search warrant “propaganda.”
“An off-duty cop goes into the wrong apartment and shoots the man who lives there dead, and so, as we’ve come to expect, local law enforcement is doing what it can to cast aspersions at the innocent victim — to suggest he was ‘no angel’ — and therefore apparently deserved to be shot dead in his own home,” Menschel told HuffPost. “And much of the media plays along, amplifying law enforcement’s propaganda.”