Fort Worth cop who killed Atatiana Jefferson details prior assault charge
Aaron Dean revealed in a job interview that he inappropriately touched a woman while in school
More information has come out about the Fort Worth cop who shot through a window and killed an innocent Black woman as she played video games with her nephew. Recently, it has been revealed that Aaron Dean once inappropriately touched a woman, and faced charges of simple assault.
Dean told a review panel, who interviewed him for a job with the Fort Worth Police Department, that while he was in college he had a run-in with the law, according to NBC 5 DFW.
“There was a young lady at the school flirting with me. I wanted to respond to see where it would go. It escalated a bit,” Dean was heard in the videotape telling the 5-member panel, according to NBC 5. “I touched her inappropriately. It was an inappropriate action. And she, of course, took exception to it and rightfully so.”
He said he pleaded no contest to a single charge of simple assault, and had to pay a fine. What he took away from the incident, Dean told the panel, is to be “careful about my actions and how they’re perceived by others.”
Dean was ultimately hired in April 2018 by the Fort Worth Police Department.
Last month, Dean shot and killed 28-year-old Atatiana Jefferson. He was responding to a wellness check phoned in by a neighbor who noticed that Jefferson’s door was ajar. When Dean arrived, he reportedly fired a single shot into the house, striking Jefferson as she played video games with her 8-year-old nephew.
In the job interview, Dean was also asked if he would be able to kill somebody if he had to.
“No problem,” he answered.
Dean, who was 32 at the time of the job interview, also expressed that while he worked in construction and didn’t have any experience in law enforcement, his age would give him a leg up on younger candidates in terms of making better decisions.
“Being 32, and not being wet behind the ears anymore… I think brings maturity that you might not find in someone straight out of high school,” Dean said, according to NBC 5.
NBC 5 reported that supervisors noted some issues in Dean’s personnel records during his first year on the job, including that he had “tunnel vision” and needed to improve “communicating with the public and fellow officers,” but his most recent evaluation in the spring was glowing. His supervisor wrote, “You are a young officer working at a level commonly seen from more experienced officers. Keep up the good work!”
After shooting Jefferson, Dean resigned from the police department. He has since been charged with murder and has pleaded not guilty.