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The family of Botham Jean gathered in Dallas on Saturday for a ceremony to unveil the newly named Botham Jean Boulevard.
Jean was shot in 2018 inside his Dallas apartment by white, female, off-duty police officer Amy Guyger. Guyger claimed she shot Botham because she thought she had entered her own home, and he was a trespassing burglar. Guyger, who is serving a 10-year sentence after being convicted of murder.
The street naming ceremony included a speech from Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson, who said Jean “embodies the very spirit of what this city is supposed to be about.”
“Somebody who was not from here… could have gone anywhere he wanted to but chose to make Dallas, Texas, his home,” Johnson said. “And didn’t just live here quietly … he contributed to this city. He found a church home … and contributed to making Dallas a better city,” he added, according to CBS Dallas.
“Yes, we want everyone to remember Botham. We want everyone to say his name. But for his name to be up there, that means he’s not [here],” said Jean’s sister, Allisa Findley. “And it is hard for us.”
“I miss my brother,” she added. “I want him back.”
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Mayor Johnson also proclaimed Saturday as Botham Shem Jean Day in the city.
“Every single Dallas police officer has to say his name. ‘Yeah? Where do you work? What’s your address? 555 Botham Jean Blvd.’ They will say his name,” Jean’s mother Allison said.
“The city of Dallas mourns with you,” Mayor Johnson said. “We honor your son’s legacy, and hopefully this is just a small demonstration of how we feel about the contributions that your son made in the very short period of time that we had him here.”
According to reports, the City Council unanimously approved renaming the street in Botham’s honor two months ago.
“We want everyone to remember Botham, we want everyone to forever say his name, but for this sign to be up here it means he’s not,“ Allisa told the crowd of around 200 on Saturday.
Mayor Johnson said the city is “honoring someone who is just as worthy — and, in my opinion, more worthy — than many of the names that grace many of the thoroughfares throughout the city.”
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