The trial for the white ex-police officer who killed Atatiana Jefferson is slated to begin next year.
The high-profile murder trial of Aaron Dean was initially scheduled to begin this month. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Judge David Hagerman ruled that the trial would commence on January 4th, 2022, with motions for the case to be heard on December 6th.
The former Fort Worth, Texas officer, responded to a call placed by Jefferson’s neighbor on October 12th, 2019. The person stated that the front door of Jefferson’s home was wide open, prompting police to conduct a welfare check. When Dean arrived, he fired at the 28-year-old woman through a window as she played video games with her nephew. According to body cam footage, Dean walked around the back of the home and never announced himself before firing his weapon. He can only be heard commanding Jefferson to put her hands up before shooting her. She passed away at the scene.
The nephew said that his aunt retrieved her weapon after hearing noises outside, but a separate officer on the scene said that Dean only saw the woman’s face in the window when he shot her.
Two days after the shooting, Dean resigned and was arrested shortly after. He later posted a $200,000 bond and has remained free ever since.
A crowd of protesters was present at Tuesday’s hearing. They yelled names at him such as “murderer” and “devil,” to which he did not respond.
If convicted, Dean faces life in prison.