A former Dallas police officer was sentenced to 10 years in prison this past week for killing her unarmed neighbor, Botham Jean.
In a powerful moment in front of the courtroom, Brandt Jean, the brother of Botham Jean, forgave Amber Guyger and urged her to give her life to Christ in court last week.
Last year Dallas police officer Guyger shot Botham Jean to death in his apartment, after she entered thinking it was her own, and that he was an intruder.
During the sentencing, many of Jeans’ family members broke down at the ruling, but Brandt Jean took the stand to speak to Guyger.
“I know if you go to God and ask him, he will forgive you,” Brandt said.
“I love you just like anyone else and I’m not going to hope you rot and die,” Brandt added. “I personally want the best for you. I wasn’t going to say this in front of my family, I don’t even want you to go to jail. I want the best for you because I know that’s exactly what Botham would want for you. Give your life to Christ. I think giving your life to Christ is the best thing Botham would want for you.”
In a picture of compassion and forgiveness, Brandt asked the judge, “I don’t know if this is possible, but can I give her a hug, please?”
The video below shows the powerful moment between Brandt and Guyger.
BREAKING: In stunning moment, Botham Jean's brother embraces Amber Guyger after her sentencing for his brother's murder.
— ABC News (@ABC) October 2, 2019
Following the powerful exchange, Judge Tammy Kemp, who presided over the case, descended from the bench and hugged Guyger.
“You can have [my Bible] I have three or four more at home,” Kemp told Guyger. “This is the one I use every day. This is your job for the next month. Right here. John 3:16. And this is where you start, ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.'”
“He has a purpose for you,” the judge added. “This will strengthen you. You just need a tiny mustard seed of faith. You start with this.”
In an interview with Good Morning America, Brandt explained that forgiving the woman who killed his brother set him free.
“This is what you have to do to set yourself free,” Brandt said on Good Morning America. “I didn’t really plan on living the rest of my life hating this woman.”
“I know that there’s something called peace of mind and that’s the type of stuff you need to do to have peace of mind,” he said. “That is why I wake up happy in the morning. That is why I want to live happy later on in my life.”
The eighteen-year-old explained that not every person in his family agreed with his decision to forgive and hug Guyger, but that he was ready.
“Each and everyone has steps to get towards actually forgiving. I probably went through those faster than other people. Some people went through it faster than me,” he said. “If you are trying to forgive [Guyger], understand that she is a human being. She still deserves love.”
“She made a mistake that she probably truly regrets so if you want to forgive her, just understand that God forgave you,” Brandt Jean added. “I know that every time I ask God for forgiveness, he forgives me, so who am I to not forgive someone who asks?”
“If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you,“ Matthew 6:14.