Texas Governor Looks To Pardon Daniel Perry

Texas Governor Looks To Pardon Daniel Perry

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott wants to pardon U.S. Army Sgt. Daniel Perry a day after a jury convicts him of killing Garrett Foster at a Black Lives Matter protest in 2020. In a state where the “stand your ground” law prohibits arguing self-defense if a person provoked a threat from someone else, Perry can possibly face no charges.

Perry and Foster

On July 25, 2020, Daniel Perry was downtown driving for Uber. A Black Lives Matter protest takes place on the street he was driving. Instead of turning around, Perry stops his car and honks at the people protesting. The crowd surrounds his car and directs him to turn around. Seconds later, Perry begins driving his car into the crowd, police said.

Foster, who was a 28-year-old white man and an Air Force veteran, was openly carrying an AK-47 rifle at the time, which is legal. There are conflicting accounts as to whether Foster raised the rifle to the driver first — but seconds later Perry, who was also legally armed, shot and killed Foster and fled the area. He called the police and reported what happened, claiming he shot in self defense after Foster aimed his weapon at him.

“Stand Your Ground” and Gun Reform

The question of self-defense and gun reform plays a role in the situation. Abbott believes strongly in the “Stand Your Ground” laws to where Perry can be exhonerated, but to whose innocence? Foster’s life with his rifle depicts him as a man looking for trouble even though he was openly carrying it. Perry took time to pull out his gun and shoots repeatedly out of self-defense. The protection of Perry himself leads to a malicious act of self-defense, but the magnitude of self-defense in the court varies by the different perspectives of the jury.

While the pardon review gets under way, Perry is facing a sentence of up to life in prison. Criminal District Judge Clifford Brown looks to set a date for the sentencing at a hearing this week.

Featured Image by Jana Birchum/The Austin Chronicle

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