‘Mistake of Fact' a Likely Defense for Amber Guyger

The murder trial of former Dallas Police Officer Amber Guyger begins Monday and many legal experts believe her guilt or innocence will likely be determined by the defense's ability to argue "mistake of fact."

"Once that is raised by the defense, which it will be by the defense, the burden shifts back to the state to disprove that defense beyond a reasonable doubt," said Defense Attorney Pete Schulte, who is not connected to the case.

Guyger has said from the start she mistook Jean's apartment for her own and then thought Jean was an intruder, opening fire. To get a murder conviction, prosecutors will have to prove Guyger intentionally or knowingly caused Jean's death.

"The burden will shift to a jury to some degree, when the defenses are brought up, whether those are valid base on the facts they hear," former Dallas County Prosecutor Thomas D'Amore said.

Amber Guyger Murder Trial Attorneys

Learn more about the prosecutors and defense attorneys

Source/Credits: Larry Collins, Jack Highberger, NBC 5, Attorney Firms

The great unknown ahead of the trial surrounds what previously unknown evidence prosecutors may enter and whether or not Guyger will take the stand.

A forensic analysis of Botham Jean's door and the fatal shot fired by Guyger are expected to be among the key pieces entered by prosecutors.

Contact Us