DALLAS - For the first time in 44 years, a Dallas police officer has been indicted for a deadly shooting in the line of duty.
21-year-old Genevive Dawes was shot and killed inside a car that was reported to police as a suspicious vehicle. The officer who shot her, Christopher Hess, is charged with one count of aggravated assault by a public servant. Another officer involved in the shooting was not charged.
Body cam video was a key part of the case, and it was presented to the grand jury. The district attorney's office talked about the importance of video evidence.
The key witness in the case is Genevive’s husband, Virgilio Rosales. He was sitting next to her in the passenger seat when she was shot. He was arrested after the shooting for a gun found in the car that police say belonged to him.
In an exclusive interview with FOX 4, Rosales recalled that deadly night and even remembered the hail of bullets that blew right past him and into his wife’s body.
Rosales is still in jail since the fatal shooting and charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. He talked about the incident for the first time after testifying before the grand jury on Wednesday.
"My first love,” he said. “For them to take her away from me like that is hard."
The 23-year-old has been in the Dallas County Jail since the night Dallas police officers shot his wife to death in the driver seat next to him. He did not learn his wife and mother of their two children was dead until hours later.
Police were called about a suspicious vehicle. Rosales says the two were sleeping inside the car when officers approached and his wife woke him up. He says he couldn't clearly see who was outside because they were shining flashlights into the car.
"She got scared,” he said. “They got guns in her face. At first, she don't know they are cops."
A barrage of bullets then tore through the car as police say Dawes put it in reverse and struck a squad car.
Rosales testified before the grand jury on Wednesday.
"They asked me if I'd seen the video,” he recalled. “I told them I don't have to see the video, I was there!"
Body cam video from that morning shows the gun police found in the car after the shooting. Rosales says the gun was not his and does not know why it was there.
"I want to see some justice,” he said.
Daryl Washington, the Dawes family attorney, is trying to get the weapons charge against Rosales dropped. He also believes Hess should face an additional count because Rosales was in the car.
"At a minimum, there should be two charges against this officer,” the attorney said.
Family members are relieved by the indictment but are praying for a conviction.
"They're not exempt from committing a crime because they're police officers,” said Mary Dawes, Genevive’s mother. “I mean, he's going to take responsibility for what he did to my daughter.”
"She's gone forever,” said Christine Saucedo, Genevive’s grandmother. “And the only thing we got is just pictures to remind us of her and her two daughters."
Hess is expected to turn himself in on the aggravated assault charge on Monday.