Atatiana Jefferson’s father dies weeks after his daughter was killed by a police officer


28-year-old Atatiana Koquice Jefferson who was shot and killed by a white police officer in her Fort Worth, Texas home after a neighbor called dispatchers to report the woman’s front door was open, police said.

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(CNN) — Marquis A. Jefferson, the father of Atatiana Jefferson, died Saturday at age 59.

Marquis Jefferson suffered a cardiac arrest and was taken to a hospital in Dallas on Friday night, family spokesman Bruce Carter said. His death comes less than a month after his daughter was fatally shot by a police officer in her home in Fort Worth, Texas. Atatiana Jefferson was his only child.

“He ultimately just succumbed to, I don’t know, I can only say a broken heart,” Carter said. “He just never recovered from the grieving process.”

On October 18, a Dallas County judge granted Marquis Jefferson a temporary restraining order, giving him full authority to make arrangements for his daughter’s funeral and burial.

“He was battling to be a part of her life to the end,” Carter said. “I think it just got the best of him.”

The father had sought the restraining order so he could be included in the arrangements but had a good relationship with his daughter’s mother and siblings, Carter told CNN last month.

Marquis Jefferson told reporters that his daughter, whom he called “Tay,” was “love.” “And that smile? Lord have mercy,” he said last month, “It could brighten up any room.”

His daughter was killed while playing with her nephew

In the early morning hours of October 12, Atatiana Jefferson, 28, was playing video games with her nephew when two officers arrived at her home.

A concerned neighbor had put out a call to the non-emergency police number after noticing the home’s exterior doors were open at that late hour. As officers walked around the house in the dark, Jefferson heard a noise in the backyard, pulled out a gun from her purse and pointed it at the window, police said.

Former Fort Worth Officer Aaron Dean yelled “Put your hands up! Show me your hands!” before he fired through the window, killing her, body camera footage showed.

Neither of the officers had identified themselves as police.

Dean resigned from the force and has been charged with murder. An attorney representing him previously declined to comment.

In the days following the shooting, the former officer declined to speak with investigators, an October arrest warrant states, and his attorneys had told police he’d provide a written statement at a later date.

In most police shootings, officers give an oral or written statement about what happened for an internal investigation, either immediately after the shooting or within 72 hours. But as Dean resigned from his job from the police department, he also declined to provide a written statement, court documents showed.

After the shooting, the neighbor who asked for a wellness check told CNN affiliate KTVT he felt “guilty’ for calling the police because “had I not called the Fort Worth Police Department, my neighbor would still be alive today.”

Atatiana Jefferson, graduated from Louisiana’s Xavier University in 2014 with a degree in biology and worked in pharmaceutical equipment sales.

She had just moved back to the home to care for her ailing mother.

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