During the sentencing of former Dallas cop Amber Guyger who murdered Botham Jean in 2018—a resident who lived in the same apartment complex as her— Jean’s brother, Brandt, asked the court if he can give the distressed Guyger a hug. The gesture sparked confused reactions from spectators as they witnessed the 18-year-old’s form of forgiveness. Now, the teenager will receive an award for this moment from the Institute of Law Enforcement Administration.
According to St. Lucia News Online, Jean and his family will travel from their native country to the States to receive the accolade on Dec. 3. “Brandt Jean represents the best in us,” a statement from Gregory Smith, the administration’s director reads. “Despite an unimaginable loss, he saw the humanity in the person responsible for his brother’s death. He saw her pain and regret and had the ability to show empathy, caring, and forgiveness.”
Smith noted that the award’s recipients “recognize an individual or organization for outstanding ethics and integrity.” On Sept. 6, 2018, Guyger entered an apartment she assumed to be hers. Once she noticed someone else was inside, which was Botham Jean, she opened fire and killed him. It was Jean’s apartment Guyger took for hers and believed Jean to be an intruder. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
“There are many Christians who asked me if I would forgive Amber. I will leave my forgiveness for Amber to myself. God knows my heart,” his mother, Allison Jean said per NBC-DFW. “What I want you to do for us, for the family is to support the legacy of Botham. We have created the foundation not to help us, but to help the underprivileged, the underserved, the vulnerable, the voiceless. So I ask you to support the Botham Jean Foundation. I would love to help someone who Botham would have wanted to help.”