A Fort Worth police officer who fatally shot a black woman in her home while she played video games with her 8-year-old nephew was charged with murder Monday, just hours after he resigned from the force.
Aaron Dean, who is white, was booked into Tarrant County Jail on a $200,000 bond.
Interim Police Chief Ed Kraus said Dean would have been fired and is considered dishonorably discharged from the department. Kraus said the U.S. Justice Department will examine the case for possible civil rights violations.
Atatiana "Tay" Jefferson, 28, was shot through her bedroom window early Saturday by an officer responding to a call from a neighbor who was concerned because her doors were open.
Her family was relieved by Dean's arrest, said S. Lee Merritt, a lawyer for the Jeffersons. He added the family "needs to see this through to a vigorous prosecution and appropriate sentencing."
Earlier Monday, family members held a news conference demanding that the officer be fired and criminally charged. Ashley Carr said her sister was killed by the officer's "reckless act," and the federal government should take over the investigation.
"There is simply no justification for his actions," she said. "We demand justice for Atatiana through an independent and thorough investigation."
Jefferson's brother, Adarius Carr, said: "This man murdered someone. He should be arrested."
Authorities arrested Dean at about 6 p.m., Sgt. Chris Daniels said at a news conference on Monday night. Police are "diligently" conducting a criminal investigation of the incident, Daniels added, and are working with the Tarrant County District Attorney's Office.
"We understand that this is a tough and tragic event, not only for her family but for the community," Daniels said. We value the trust that we've had with our community. We will continue to build that trust."
Investigators were scheduled to interview the officer Monday, police Lt. Brandon O’Neil said. Police released audio of a neighbor's call to a nonemergency phone number that sent police to the home.