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NFL releases Botham Jean PSA highlighting police brutality ahead of Super Bowl

The Botham Jean ad is the third to come out of The Responsibility Program, an initiative created by the NFL and Roc Nation.

The NFL released a public service announcement honoring the life of Botham Jean Wednesday ahead of the Super Bowl.

Jean, an unarmed black man was shot in his own apartment in 2018 by Amber Guyger, a former Dallas police officer who was also Jean's neighbor. Guyger, who lived on the floor below Jean and is white, testified that she had mistakenly entered Jean's apartment, thought Jean was a burglar and shot him in the chest. She was convicted of murder and sentenced to 10 years in prison earlier this year.

Jean, a St. Lucia native, was an accountant. He died at 26 years old.

"He is an active child," Allison Jean, Botham's mother, said in the ad as a slideshow of her son, featuring pictures of him at work and with his friends and family appear. "He is the light in any dark room.”

Image: Botham Jean
Botham Jean.Harding University

The Jean PSA is the third to come out of The Responsibility Program, an initiative created by the NFL and Roc Nation in 2019 whose purpose is to educate others and create awareness about social justice issues through video. It will be broadcast during the Super Bowl Feb. 2.

Botham's sister, Allisa Findley, also appeared in the 2-minute ad and described her brother as "the kindest, sweetest person you could ever know.”

In the middle of the ad, footage from news reports describing the incident play, as Findley says that her brother was in his apartment, watching football and eating ice cream before he was killed.

"Botham was everything to us," Bertram Jean, Botham's father, said. "I look forward to the day Botham would have gotten married, having kids. Life is not sweet anymore."

"What I hope to see happening is that our black boys aren't seen as a threat," Allison added. "What has happened to Botham should not happen to another family."

The message "We need to do more to create change" appears on-screen before the ad ends, directing viewers to go the website for the Botham Jean Foundation, an organization Jean's sister started to honor her brother and advance the causes and communities he was invested in.

Though the NFL has undertaken several social justice initiatives in recent years, including the Responsibility Program and its Inspire Change initiative, the league continues to face criticism over its treatment of Colin Kaepernick amid his public displays of protest.

The former San Francisco 49ers player has not been signed by any team since he opted out of his contract with the team in March 2017 to become a free agent. Kapernick made headlines in 2016 after he kneeled during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racial inequality in the United States. He played six seasons with the 49ers.

San Francisco is headed to the Super Bowl Feb. 2. and will square-off against the Kansas City Chiefs.