A former Dallas police officer who lost her job after shooting an unarmed man was charged Thursday with aggravated assault.
A grand jury indicted former Officer Amy Wilburn on Thursday.
The indictment stems from an incident that was captured on police dash cam and took place in early Dec. 2013. Three weeks after that incident, Wilburn was fired.
In the video, Dallas police were chasing two carjacking suspects in the Pleasant Grove area. As the chase came to an end, the driver can be seen getting out and running while the car is still moving, and another officer gives chase.
Then, Officer Wilburn is seen running up to the driver's side of the car. She appears surprised that someone else is in the car, draws her pistol and fires one shot.
The man in the car, 19-year-old Kelvion Walker, was hit in the chest. He spent several days in the hospital.
Police said Walker did not have a weapon.
The indictment came as a surprise to many in law enforcement, despite the fact that Police Chief David Brown says the dash cam video clearly shows violations of department policy.
After reviewing the case, Chief Brown fired Wilburn, saying she did not follow department protocol by using deadly force without fear or justification.
FOX 4 spoke to criminal defense attorney and sworn deputy Pete Schulte on Thursday.
He’s not representing anyone in the case, but says the indictment could have a chilling effect on law enforcement.
“At the end of the day, police officers are human,” said Schulte. “They are going to make mistakes. You know, the last thing we want is police officers on the street having to think twice before acting because at some point they are going to find themselves either seriously injured or killed, so there is a really fine balance that has to be met."
Schulte says for Wilburn to be convicted, the state will have to prove Wilburn intentionally, knowingly or recklessly caused serious injury. Schulte believes the round fired may have even been an accidental discharge.
On Thursday, Walker’s attorney said he's glad the grand jury realized Wilburn needs to go to trial.
“On behalf of Kelvion and our firm, we are glad to see that the grand jury sees the facts the same way that we do,” Walker’s attorney, Geoff Henley, said in a statement. “It is extraordinarily rare that police officers get indicted for shootings and other instances of excessive force. Clearly, the grand jury found Amy Wilburn’s conduct egregious.”
Calls to Wilburn's attorney have not yet been returned to FOX 4.
The Dallas Police Association has declined to comment on Wilburn's indictment.
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