Judge Tammy Kemp hugged Amber Guyger and gave her a Bible on Wednesday, after the former Dallas cop and convicted killer was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
While video of the incident went viral, largely drawing praise and talk of Christian forgiveness, the moment was much less appreciated by former ESPN anchor Jemele Hill, who called it “unacceptable.”
In another touching moment, the 18-year-old brother of the shooting victim, Brandt Jean, spoke during the victim impact statement segment of Guyger’s sentencing proceedings. Brandt showed the perfect example of Christian love and grace by forgiving the killer.
Brandt then stood and asked the court if he could give the convicted woman a hug to show that he truly did forgive her.
What a moment in the courtroom, just now. Botham Jean's brother Brandt took the opportunity to forgive Amber Guyger, tell her to devote her life to Christ, and then asked the judge if he could give Guyger a hug.
The judge, wiping tears from her eyes, allowed the moment to happen pic.twitter.com/rxo6sNOwa7
— Mike Leslie (@MikeLeslieWFAA) October 2, 2019
However, Hill took a swipe at Judge Kemp for following the young man’s example and giving the convicted killer a hug in the courtroom.
“How Botham Jean’s brother chooses to grieve is his business. He’s entitled to that,” Hill dismissively tweeted before taking aim at the judge. “But this judge choosing to hug this woman is unacceptable. Keep in mind this convicted murderer is the same one who laughed about Martin Luther King Jr’s assassination, and killing ppl on sight.”
How Botham Jean’s brother chooses to grieve is his business. He’s entitled to that. But this judge choosing to hug this woman is unacceptable. Keep in mind this convicted murderer is the same one who laughed about Martin Luther King Jr’s assassination, and killing ppl on sight. https://t.co/Nu5QGOIR1K
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) October 2, 2019
Hill’s reference to racism concerns some of the social media posts that former Dallas Police Officer Amber Guyger posted over the years, including one where she joked that she wanted to spray pepper spray onto a crowd at a Martin Luther King, Jr., parade. The tweets were highlighted during the trial.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.